Minutes of LCDC Board Meeting


Date: August 2, 2021, 6.30pm

Location: Cafe Ceardach

Present: Board members: Helen Murchison (HM), Hilary Rooke (HR), Peter Mackenzie (PM) and Peter Barr (PB), Local Development Officer: Kristine Mackenzie (KM), Observer (Social Media Manager): Vicky Stonebridge (VS).

Apologies: None

Declaration of interest: None

1 Approve minutes of previous meeting: N/A

2 Acting Chair’s introductory remarks: HM agreed to take the chair after resignation of Colin Sharp and welcomed new board members, PM and PB.

3 LDO’s Report:

a KM said housing project would be slightly delayed due to planning issue caused by extra drainage requirement, leading to a need for compromise without reducing value of land. Meeting will be held soon with planners and housing association to finalise. Work should start early next year.

b Restocking of woodlands (40 hectares) due to be done next summer at a cost of £106,000-£110,000. Key aim – to increase value of open space and plant trees which are best for the environment. Consultant from Scottish Woodlands Association to come soon to recommend species.

4 Online Purchases

KM said she needs to be able to make online purchases without HR (as the only remaining signatory/named cardholder) needing to verify every purchase via message from bank – a new requirement. HR pointed out that the Articles require two signatories for payments, including at least one director.

ACTION: It was agreed that KM should be given a card, with the logistics to be finalised to verify purchases and avoid undue delays.

5 Cafe Ceardach

PM expressed concerns about the Cafe’s reduced hours and forced early shutdown. All are concerned about staff shortages. KM said she needed to monitor status to report back to funders, and it was suggested that this could be handled by asking the Cafe Board for relevant info when required. General agreement that management structure needs to be clarified – e.g. The Cafe Board and manager, reporting to LCDC Board. PB said there seem to be two issues, management and chronic shortage of staff, and all agreed that LCDC Board should meet Cafe Board to fact check and clarify management structure.

ACTION: Meeting to be confirmed next Thursday (August 12), focusing on management structure, roles and recruitment.

6 Finance & Accounts Report

The Cafe has been doing well since reopening in terms of finances. Cafe and Kirkton Trading accounts still to be signed off, but LCDC ready. HR reported anonymous legacy to Woodland.

7 Reschedule AGM: Thursday, September 2, 2021, with guest speaker (to be confirmed) and refreshments to encourage more people to come.

8 Any other business

ACTION: KM’s contract to be sorted. To be discussed after meeting with Cafe Board.

ACTION: Maintenance plan to be drawn up with help from VS.

ACTION: Market stalls to start again last Friday of month.

9 Time, date and location of next meeting: To be confirmed

Further community engagement after the AGM.

Thanks to everyone who attended the AGM and talk by Michael Scott last week. It was a welcome change to see a strong attendance and for people to get a chance to air their views how LCDC is doing. Michael’s fascinating talk was a much needed break from the frank exchange of views! We thank him for giving up his evening to talk about his adventures as a wildlife cruise ship speaker.
The LCDC committee are desperately in need of more directors and active members, but it became clear that events of recent years have left members with lots of questions and concerns which need talking through further. It was decided to hold another public meeting as part of this process.
This will take place on the 30th September at 7pm, in Cafe Ceardach once again. Please come along, join up if you are not already a member ( £5 life membership details in comments ) . If you are already a member but didn’t get the email about the AGM, PM with your correct email address.
Together we can push forwards for the benefit of our community!
Vicky ( web admin ) .


Wellness walks for winter 2021

We’re delighted that our development officer has been once again able to access funding to allow the successful ‘Wellness Walks’ from last year to go ahead again. Thanks to organiser Lynda’s enthusiasm, these have provided a vital opportunity for many people to socialise safely outdoors while getting exercise and to explore new places.

children’s activities in Summer Holidays- Report and photos 2021

It’s hard believe the school holidays are over and our children have settled back into school.  Best of luck to all of those entering primary school and moving on up to secondary.  We had a great turnout at our Summer Activities program funded by Green Health “Think Health Think Nature” .  In all 23 children attend our outdoor activities up at Kirkton Community Woodland.   Our younger pupils were eagerly involved in identifying Mini beasts, providing a luxurious new home within the “Bug Hotel”, pond dipping & endless hours of fun with wheelbarrows.  A note to all parents out there wondering what to get their children for Christmas this year – A Wheelbarrow!  As for our older children, they immersed themselves in everything survival.  From making shelters, navigation, foraging, using a kelly kettle and  101 uses an old pair of tights can have in a survival situation.  We promised to hand back children wet and tired and we certainly delivered some drenched looking specimens who surprisingly turned up for more the next day.
Thanks to Angela Goodman for her amazing assistance, the on-going support from our community development officer Kristine Mackenzie, the Cafe Ceardach for providing a wonderful lunch each day & to Green Health for funding these activities.
( Thanks to Lynda for the Photos and write up )

Volunteer day in KW- report and photos- August 2021

Many thanks to Lynda for coordinating lots of activity in Kirkton Woodland & providing photos and write ups.

We had another fruitful volunteer day up at Kirkton community woodland.  Thanks to  volunteers Greg, Toby who assisted local historian Paul Swan to uncover one of the ruined cottages along the heritage trail.  There was much excitement as we uncovered more of the foundation stones.  Leigh came along and helped Lynda along the sensory trail, giving the willow tunnel a bit of TLC & a new up-date in wool carpet fittings courtesy of Keith Pearce.  We would like to thank all those involved so far and encourage more people to come along and get involved.  There are always tasks to be done, it’s a few hours of being outdoors and meeting new folk with jobs to fit all abilities.  We hope to bring you some more dates together in October.  So, please do get intouch with volunteer Lynda Beveridge by email:  beveridge.lynda@yahoo.co.uk


woodland activities Aug 2021- reports

As part of the Green Health program of events we’ve had some new folk come and join us on the the volunteer days.  Thanks to Toby, Gwen and Greg that helped clear vegetation from one of the old ruins of the Kirkton Settlement along the heritage trail as well has helping to weed areas of the path.  If you’d like join, come along to our next Volunteer day on Sat 21st Aug 1-3pm at the community woodland – there’s plenty of jobs to do.

Thanks to local historian Paul Swan for a fascinating guided walk around the ruinous settlement of Kirkton up at Kirkton community woodland.  Paul has been instrumental in organizing the signs that are now placed along the Heritage Trail.  Many thanks also to local artist Cindie Ritcher for her interpretation of how the cottages would have resembled when they were in use.  Paul led an engaging talk as part of the Green Health events taking part in Kirkton Community Woodlands.

Lands Tribunal letter: What does it mean?

Residents at Kirkton recently received a letter from the Lands Tribunal for Scotland which has caused some concern and we would like to reassure everyone that this is simply a formality relating to the access route for the new housing to be built on the neighbouring land owned by LCDC. As part of this process, LCDC has applied to the Lands Tribunal to “remove historic burdens from its title,” and this basically means updating the obligations of the landowner – a standard procedure for such developments. The letter provides the opportunity to residents receiving the letter to register any objections if they believe that they will be adversely affected by any of these changes. We are sorry if the letter from the Lands Tribunal has caused any concerns and please get in touch if you need any more information.

LCDC’s solicitors have provided us with the following summary.

“Lochcarron Community Development Trust (LCDC) has applied to the Lands Tribunal for Scotland to remove historic burdens from their title. Because your property is proximate to LCDC’s land, you have been notified by the Lands Tribunal in case you have issue with the historic burdens being discharged (and therefore giving up any potential rights to enforce said historic burdens). Descriptions of the burdens can be found in the titles enclosed with the Lands Tribunal Notice. However, for ease of reference, we have noted them below.”

Deed of Conditions by Alkest Ltd recorded GRS Ross and Cromarty 5 May 1977

(FOURTH) requiring a residential dwelling house to be erected on the Property; (FIFTH) restricting the use of the residential dwelling house to a private dwelling house for no more than one family with no additional buildings of any description and open ground to be kept as ornamental garden ground;

(SIXTH) prohibition on carrying on any other building on the Property;

(EIGHTH) requiring the construction of fences along with lateral and rear boundaries and maintenance thereof, with no alterations to be made to the boundaries;

(NINTH) where within the boundaries of any feu there I included an area of ground reserved as part of a roadway, footpath, pedestrian way, common good or amenity ground the feuar of that feu shall ensure that such area of ground is never developed or built upon in any way and when called upon to do so by the Superiors or the Local or Public Authority shall convey the same to such Local or Public Authority without any consideration or compensation being paid therefor; and

(TENTH) to keep the dwelling house erected on the Property insured, and to re-instate.

Title Condition 2 

Disposition by Loch Carron (Guernsey) Ltd in favour of Howard Doris Limited dated 2nd April and recorded GRS Ross and Cromarty 18 April 1975

 A real burden to the effect of prohibiting the erection of buildings other than private dwelling houses on the Property and of binding the owner of the Property to keep the area unbuilt on other than with private dwelling houses for the occupation of single families and not exceeding two storeys in height with relative garages.

Title Condition 3

 Deed of Conditions by Gainlong Limited recorded GRS Ross & Cromarty 14 April 1989

 (FIRST) requiring dwelling house and garages to be maintained in good order and repair;

(SECOND) that no exterior or structural alteration be made without the prior written approval of the relevant local authority;

(THIRD) that each dwelling house be used as a private residence for one family only and for no other purposes whatever;

(FOURTH) that garages to be used for the storage of private motor vehicles only and for no purpose whatever;

(FIFTH) that the dwelling house, garages and offices be kept constantly insured against damage or destruction;

(SIXTH) that in the event of damage or destruction all erection be rebuilt; (SEVENTH) that no additional buildings be erected without the prior written consent of the local planning authority;

(EIGHTH) that any fences shall not be altered or removed and no additional fences or walls be erected without the prior written consent of the relevant local planning authority;

(NINTH) that walls and fences be maintained and in good order and repair and where necessary renewed and replaced;

(TENTH) that any trees grown shall not be removed etc. with the prior written consent of the local authority;

(ELEVENTH) that the Property so far as unbuilt on shall be laid out and used as garden ground or as ground for the drying of clothes and shall be kept in a neat and tidy condition and free from weeds;

(TWELFTH) no business, trade or manufacture of any nature shall be undertaken and no activity carried on therein which in the opinion of the majority of the proprietors shall constitute a nuisance.

Funding for Woodland replanting plan.

Part of the criteria for the community purchase of Kirkton Woodland, was that it will be replanted within a certain timescale. There have been a lot of changes and activity within the woodland since it’s purchase, including some tree-planting with local children and volunteers. Now the previous replanting plans need updating. We are delighted that Kishorn Port Limited has recognised Kirkton Woodlands importance to the community and future development plans, and have very kindly provided the necessary funding to engage The Community Woodland association to conduct site visits, produce a species layout plan and work with LCDCs Development Officer to fit the plan to the community needs while delivering on the replanting obligations.

Kirkton Housing Development Update

Kirkton Housing Development Update
Lochcarron Community Development Company can report that as the site has moved through the planning process, the drainage solution proposed for the first phase (14 units and 4 self build plots) requires to be redesigned to make sure we have a single adoptable drainage solution for all potential future phases, this has pushed the determination date for planning back to the Autumn. Other statutory consents follow on from planning therefore the estimated start date for site works has been pushed back to January 2022