Another Day, Another Digger

Eleven, twelve, dig and delve..

 

 

Work starts on the track to our community turbine site (with the Ben Mor Hydro pipeline in the background). Renewable energy – and an income for the community is on its way!

It’s been all go in the East End of Coigach these last few months with several construction projects in action. RJ Mcleod have been busy on the Ben Mor Hydro site, Curries are now at work on the turbine site, and Kinellan Building and their sub-contractors have been all-out at the Schoolhouse. Scottish Water have had a new road put in below the Piping Cafe for the new water treatment works and a new house is going up in Badenscallie.

It’s all great entertainment for some of the younger members of the community who are delighted by the parade of lorries, diggers, vans and other mysterious vehicles – and good for the local cafe and shop where sales of bacon rolls and snacks have received a welcome boost.

Hardy Perennials

The Ground Force!
The Ground Force!

 

Work will be starting soon on Achiltibuie Schoolhouse so we held a clear-out day to cut back some of the undergrowth that was beginning to take over the garden. Local volunteers armed with a various bits of gardening paraphernalia gathered on Saturday 19th March and were soon chopping and lopping to tackle the jungle. A couple of hours later and there was something of a transformation – it may not be a contender for garden of of the year yet, but there is space now, allowing access for the construction team who will be working on the building (soon we hope).  Many thanks to all our volunteers for their time and effored – and missing from the picture Bill and Iain who removed several trailer-loads of branches and greenery – and especially to Lesley and Rose at the Piping School Cafe who generously sponsored the day by providing lunch for the garden army.

 

Steve chopping trees Work underway Ruth and Iain dealing with clematis

 

And after…..

 

Schoolhouse after clearance

Good Wind Forecast

Coigach Community Development Company

At last night’s directors’ meeting we met Andy Oldroyd of Oldbaum Services Ltd (www.oldbaumservices.co.uk) who gave a brief but very encouraging resume of his analysis of the data Oldbaum have been collecting from our meteorological mast on the site of our proposed community wind turbine. Meanwhile, Atmos Consulting Ltd have almost completed their very thorough report which examines  the environmental  issues including ornithology and we are looking forward to receiving that within the next few weeks. Another step nearer to our submission for planning permission!

Flying the Flag for Coigach Kids

Designed by Achiltibuie Primary School

Last year, children at Achiltibuie Primary School led by Local Development Officer Linda Macleod had a go at designing a flag for Coigach. Their designs were all so good it was difficult to pick one – so we’ve used them all!

Achiltibuie Primary School is currently looking for a new Head Teacher. Highland Council will probably be recruiting for this exiting post soon so if you would like to know more, get in touch and we’ll let you know when it is advertised or watch this space: we’ll post the appropriate links when they are available. Apart from our wonderful children, and fantastic enviroment this job comes with a school house – over looking the Summer Isles.  Hullo Mr or Ms Chips!

Featured in Guardian/Observer Travel

Splendid isolation: looking out from Loch Broom to the Summer Isles. Click on the magnifying glass icon to see a large version of the image. Photograph: Murdo Macleod for the Observer

www.guardian.co.uk

Journalist Paul Webster visited Coigach as a youngster and came back recently to see if it was as good as he remembered. To summarise: it was!  All  in all Mr Webster has written  an enthusiastic piece which gives a very positive impression to the potential visitor  though as locals were quick to point out, there were are few inaccuracies: we have TWO whole shops, which between them serve the community with a wide variety of goods and services and the school has not been downgraded to a one teacher establishment…..yet.  The CCDC continutes to work hard towards our goal of providing  housing to encourage young families with children to live here. The happy news that the wind turbine can be transported here means we are a little step further towards a sustainable income but there’s lot of work to do – not least finding a suitable site for housing development.

We’re looking forward to welcoming visitors spurred on by Mr Webster’s article – and if they want to come and live here too so much the better. Vibrant community, excellent little school, fantastic scenery in an unpolluted environment, fun for all ages – what’s not to like?

For accommodation and visitor information go to  Achiltibuie Tourist Association’s own website www.coigach.com

(Click the link to read the whole article – but if that doesn’t work, we’ve pasted it into Coigach Connections for posterity.)

Well attended AGM – click to read notes and Chair’s report!

Click on ‘Chairman’s Report AGM 2011’ tab above to read Chair Iain Muir’s round-up of a busy year’s activities: the work of  Local Development Officers Linda and Peter and the Directors, Nick Clooney, Steve Husband, Ann Macleod (Ali Beag), Anne Macleod, Ian Macleod, Iain Muir, Phil Shaughnessy, Rich Williams, Julia Campbell and Ben Walton and other members of the community giving of time and skills.  The ‘Notes from 2011 AGMtab will give you the detail of all the topics discussed at the AGM.