Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Would this be your 'City Vision'?

Thanks to this post in the 'Chris Brown' blog for drawing my attention to a letter in the Telegraph

The letter makes the following points;

'Cities are this country's economic engines and the centre of creativity. People move to cities to find jobs and earn more. Ninety per cent of us live in cities, so the form of our urban settlements must be sustainable. This means compact, polycentric cities.'

'There is no shortage of brownfield sites – England has 66,000 hectares which could be used for building – and while there is a need for more well-designed dwellings, there are 750,000 homes lying empty and 22 million homes which should be retrofitted. Some 330,000 dwellings have planning permission but have not been built.'

'The movement back to cities is to be encouraged. '

'A green belt helps to contain the city and protect the countryside.'

Do you share this 'vision'?

Updated DPS with Scottish Government

Development Plan Scheme

The Highland Development Plan Scheme 2011 has been reviewed and updated for November 2011. This has been submitted to the Scottish Government for their consideration. The updated document is available at the link below:

The Highland Development Plan Scheme has 3 purposes:

  • to explain what future local development plans for Highland will contain;
  • when they are likely to be produced;
  • and how individuals, communities and organisations can be involved in making these plans.
Taken from THC web page here

Get up to date with the Development Plans Team

THC web page here

For the most up to date news on the work of the Development Plans Team (and more) please follow our twitter account, 'Like' our Facebook page and check out our blog:

Housing in the Countryside and Siting and Design

Highland Council web page here

The Highland Council have reviewed the Interim Supplementary Guidance: Housing in the Countryside and Siting and Design. The document is available on the link below:

The guidance is used to highlight how The Council will interpret and implement the policy set out in its development plans relating to the development of housing in the open countryside. The guidance largely covers the implementation of policy within the most pressured “hinterland of towns” area.

If you would like to discuss the document further please contact Malcolm Macleod on 01463 702 506 or by e-mail to

Development Plan Policy Guidance

Below taken from page here on Highland Council web page

Development Plan Policy Guidance (or Supplementary Planning guidance) is founded upon the development plan. It provides more detailed guidance for Local Plans (where the guidance is founded on the Structure Plan), for development control, for developers and for the public on the interpretation of specific policies contained in the development plan. It must, however, be read in conjunction with the development plan.

Details of any consultation on draft Development Plan Policy Guidance (or SPG) is also available

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Trees, Woodlands and Development

The purpose of this Supplementary Guidance is to ensure that applicants seeking planning
permission effectively consider and subsequently manage existing trees and woodlands, as well
as identifying opportunities for planting and management of new trees and woodlands. This
enables planners to make quicker, efficient and more consistent decisions.

Pages 19-22 may be of particular interest to those with an interest in a current planning application in Nairn town centre.

(With thanks to the HC Forestry Officer, Mr Stuart for taking the time to answer my questions this morning)

Monday, 12 December 2011


Just in from Scottish Government, 'Housing and Regeneration Newsletter':

"Published today, Achieving a Sustainable Future, Scotland's Regeneration Strategy sets out a £175 million programme of investment to support the country's most disadvantaged communities, transforming the prospects of the people who live there.

You can download the document from our website."

"Part of the regeneration investment set out in the strategy includes a £50 million SPRUCE Fund created with the European Commission and the European Investment Bank, through Scotland's JESSICA (Joint European Support for Sustainable Investment in City Areas) Fund, which is now open for business.

North and South Planning Committee membership confirmed

As noted from links in Agenda (item 17) for forthcoming Highland Council Meeting

South Planning Applications Committee (19 Members)

Mr E Hunter (12) Mr B Wynd (18)
Mrs M Davidson (13) Mr L Fraser (19)
Mr H Wood (13) Mr A S Park (19)
Mr A Graham (14) Mr J Crawford (20)
Mrs J Campbell (15) Mr T Prag (20)
Mr D Kerr (15) Mr S Black (21)
Mr N Donald (16) Mr D Fallows (21)
Mr D Henderson (16) Mr D Cameron (22)
Mr J Gray (17) Dr M Foxley (22)
Mr R Balfour (18)

North Planning Applications Committee (17 Members)

Mr G Farlow (1) Mr M Rattray (7)
Mr D MacKay (2) Mr R Durham (8)
Mr G Smith (3) Mr P Cairns (9)
Mr D Bremner (4) Mr D Chisholm (9)
Mr R Coghill (4) Mr B Barclay (10)
Mr I Ross (5) Mrs I McCallum (10)
Mrs I Campbell (6) Mr H Fraser (11)
Mrs A Sinclair (6) Mr I Renwick (11)
Mr M Finlayson (7)

West Link Working Group minutes now available

Minutes of Meeting of the Inverness Trunk Link Road (West Link) Working Group held in Committee Room 1, Council Headquarters, Inverness on Thursday, 10 November 2011 at 2.00pm.

Minutes of Meeting of the Inverness Trunk Link Road (West Link) Working Group held in the Council Chamber, Council Headquarters, Inverness on Thursday, 17 November 2011 at 4.00pm.

Confusingly both these notes state that the next meeting will be: accordance with the timetable set out, another meeting take place on 27 January 2012 at 10.30 a.m.


Date of Next Meeting -
The Working Group NOTED that it’s next meeting take place on 27 January 2012 at 10.30 a.m.

Good news from the second round of the Community Council elections (12/12/11)

Council web site reports - click here

16 of the 19 Community Councils in the Highlands that had gone into abeyance last month will be able to continue following a second round of elections.

When the deadline for nomination closed at 4 pm on Friday 9 December, 12 Community Councils received sufficient nominations to form a Community Council ie they attracted half or more than their maximum entitlement (7-13). They are:-

Caithness: Bower

Sutherland: Tongue,

Ross: Gairloch, Fearn.

Skye: Glendale, Broadford and Strath, Skeabost and District.

Inverness: Merkinch, Inverness South.

Nairn: East Nairnshire,

Lochaber: Nether Lochaber, Glencoe and Glen Etive.

There may be elections in Dunvegan, Lairg, Raasay and Sleat, where more nominations than the maximum membership were received. These would take place via a postal ballot early in the new year. Candidates have until 4 pm on Tuesday to withdraw their nomination, so the picture can change.

The three community councils which remain in abeyance are Caol, Inverness Central and Laggan (where they operate a community association instead and were never going to form a CC).


Royal Burgh Parks, Land for Road Options and the Common Good

A thought provoking post on the blog of Andy Wightman click here