Lochcarron Covid 19 Community Response Project – Covid 19 Volunteer Co-ordinator Required

Lochcarron Covid 19 Community Response Project

Covering, Strathcarron, Glencarron, Lochcarron, Achintraid, Kishorn

Covid 19 Volunteer Co-ordinator Required

We are looking for someone with a good knowledge of the community, able to commit to a regular time slot (average 3hrs x 3 times per week), for a minimum of 3 months, renumeration is set at £10 per hour plus expenses

Job Description;

Given the ever-changing circumstances the role may change in line with policy, as a basic guideline we wish the Co-ordinator to deliver the following;

  • Work with our existing team to establish a secure, signposting service, the “first port of call” for Covid 19 related information, the format to include alternative measures to meet the needs of those experiencing digital exclusion
  • Understand and be responsive to community needs – work closely with the community and encourage people to provide input to the service
  • Establish a befriending chat line service
  • Compile a register of known volunteers, seek to extend numbers and engage regular conversation with those involved

Essential Skills;

  • A good knowledge of the Third Sector
  • Good IT and social media skills
  • Diplomacy and the ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality


  • A basic understanding of the Third Sector

Please Note; Given the current circumstances and the need for swift action, please be aware of the following deadlines;

Expressions of interest – deadline for submission April 29th

Commencement – May 4th

For further information or an informal chat, please contact; covid19lcdc@gmail.com

Another report from Nic about volunteer work up Cnoc na Staing , Saturday 21st April, thanks everyone for all your Stirling work! :

“Four of us went up the Cnoc path from the Wee Campsite. I was a bit horrified to find the gorse – particularly on the East side of the path – had been burnt off. It was difficult to fathom out how, but it has finished the job we started (until it regenerates, of course). We found a few small trees on the left side of the path which we moved or noted for coming back to quite soon with guards. The before-during-after pictures show the path as seen from the top of the hill.

At the edge of the moor the path has a culvert which had become blocked so we did a bit of digging and squelching around, and Judith scraped the surface clear of mud so it should be better to walk on.

We went over the Cnoc viewpoint and found a sheltered spot on the east side for a brew and a piece of cake (made that morning!). Then down through the wood to Kirkton Gardens, some of which was quite passable. Through to Croft Road we found some more vegetation to prune and it was after 5pm when we finished!

A good afternoon, well spent with friends.”

photos of School and Nursery Tree planting 22nd Feb 2018

On the 22nd February 2018 pupils from Lochcarron Primary School and the youngsters from the Nursery group went up to Kirkton Community Woodland to plant lots of trees donated by The Woodland Trust. They were assisted by Lynda our Community engagement animateur, Nic volunteer coordinator, parents and volunteers, many thanks to all of them and the School for their help. The volunteers have also been busy clearing the ground for this event. The trees are tubed for now as their isn’t enough funding to re-fence the whole woodland yet. They planted are a mixture of deciduous native trees, including Rowan, hawthorn, birch, oak.

Come along and see what’s been happening in your woods!

December 23rd, 10am till 1pm.
Come along and see what’s been happening in your woods! 
There will be a bonfire of some of the felled waste timber (which will help us tidy up a bit) and you can bring marshmallows to toast. Fire lighting at 10am and Kirkton Woods volunteer supervisor, Nic Bullivant, will be on hand to show you round till 1pm. Turn up any time after 10.00. Head for the wood yard which is up the track from the forest entrance.

It’s the first day of the holiday, a good opportunity to get out of the house and enjoy the short winter’s day.

Here’s just some of what our fantastic squad of Volunteers achieved already;

A classic day in the woods.

A well-defined job that will make a big difference, a friendly bunch of folk, a variety of weather, but not much rain and good satisfaction by the end.
We put a culvert in to the drain which runs past the pond and is crossed by a direct walking route from the pond to the big gable-ended ruin.
We also cleared waste obstructing this route and extended it down towards the main stream at the bottom of the woods. More to do on this.
After three days laying back the gorse on the path up towards Cnoc an Staing, we returned to the big woods.
The main plan is to start to make the path to the big ruin a reality. There are some great drainage pipes to install and the usual “harvesting waste” to clear back.
We concentrated on clearing the ditch on the left as you go up. Don’t worry – we’ll be back. There are more big bushes Davie Thomson said he would chain saw, and the path along the top to the viewpoint is still a bit beset with bushes and water. It was much too cold on Friday to work up there! Another job in that region is to install the new viewpoint bench and remove the remaining metal poles which used to support the TV aerial.
And, as the ghost of work yet to come, here is a picture from the old Coffin Route. Who said it was wet? That’s an understatement.

New programme of Kirkton Woods Volunteer Days

Hey! You with the Loppers!

Hello, my name is Nic Bullivant and starting at 10.00 a.m. next Wednesday October 11th I’m inviting you to the first in a new programme of Kirkton Woods Volunteer Days – actually half days to begin with – which we plan to run a couple of times a month over the winter, spring and autumn months until Christmas 2018. And we’d like you to come along, lend a hand and Enjoy Yourself! Even if you can’t manage that date, look out for others, and they won’t all be on Wednesdays, either.

What will we be doing?              

Well, just to get warmed up we’ll be clearing up some more of the old dead branches from around the ruins of the old Kirkton settlement within the woods and its new footpath – so that they can be better appreciated by visitors, better accessed by local school children who are doing project work there as well as creating a nice picnic table/reception area at the threshold for a Grand Opening in Spring next year.

Branches & felling debris on Kirkton blackhouse ruin

Over the weeks and months to come we’d like to:-

  • clear encroaching gorse from the Cnoc an Staing public footpath up through the crofts to the Viewpoint;
  • provide something a little more stylish and welcoming at the Viewpoint  than the present ‘plank’ seat; (see picture)
  • install new timber signs and plaques incorporating artwork that the primary school children are producing to explain the heritage and wildlife interest in the woods;
  • prepare an area  of cleared ground for a Public Tree Planting Event planned for late February 2018 that will involve the school and anyone (i.e. everyone) from the area;
  • improve access, drainage and way-marking along the old drove route through the forest;
  • develop a new entrance for woodland visitors/walkers from Kirkton Gardens

oh, and finally – the Big One!…


  • help build a new timber forest classroom/wet weather refuge at the Timber Stackyard.

Artist’s Impression of new Forest Classroom

Do I need to have a background in woodwork, landscaping or forestry to get involved?

Absolutely not. This for anyone who can simply spare a few hours once or twice a month and who just wants to get out for a bit and do a Good Turn. If you can push a wheelbarrow, or use a pair of loppers/secateurs – or even just bring along some biscuits and help make the half-time hot drinks – then you will be Most Welcome. We hope to ensure there’s always a range of tasks to choose from to suit all levels of strength and ability and to make everyone feel involved, busy and part of the team.

Will it be cold, wet, hard work?

Well, it’s only going to work if it’s fun, and we can’t guarantee fine weather every time, that’s for sure. Yes you will need to dress warmly with sturdy footwear and bring waterproofs in case it rains (see What to Bring below). We have a Bad Weather Refuge which will allow us all to get out of the wind and wet whenever needed. The whole session will last a maximum of three hours but there will be an obligatory half-time break for a warm drink, rest and get to know who else is as mad (keen) as you to turn up in the first place!

Why is it on a Wednesday morning?

No reason really. We had to choose some day of the week to get the Programme started and – if you get in touch and/or turn up we can talk about another Regular Day (or even time of day) that best suits you. So do get in touch if you’d really like to get involved but just find the current timing impossible or impractical. We want to capture as much local enthusiasm (and energy!) as possible.

OK – how do I get involved?

It would be really great if you contacted me beforehand just so I know how many chairs, biscuits and hand tools I need to provide. But you don’t have to. You can just turn up on the day and you would be just as welcome. You can drop me an email at nic.bullivant@gmail.com. Alternatively you could ring The Smithy on 01520 722232 and leave your details (or any queries) on the answer machine there so that I can register your interest or get back to you if required. Thank You.

What to bring?

As mentioned earlier, you should dress for The Outdoors: warm, hard-wearing clothes and boots/wellies that you might use to do gardening (say) or hill-walking. Definitely bring waterproofs and a warm hat. At the moment we don’t have many Volunteer Tools and are therefore hoping that those people who have them might bring some of their own along at least at first. The first task is some branch and woody debris clearance work so any loppers, secateurs, pruning or bow saws would be the most appropriate tools. Obviously some robust gardening gloves are best if working with cutting tools like this. If you have a garden fork or spade then they might be useful as we pick over the ground to make it suitable for future grass seeding and picnic tables. If you have no tools or simply are unable to bring any along then that’s OK. We will have a small array of tools that you can use. Don’t forget to bring some personal refreshment for the half time break (a mug, flask of tea/soup and some food to keep you going). There will be a ‘Kelly kettle’ going so there should be hot/boiling water available on the day so even just a mug and a sachet of powdered soup, hot chocolate or the like would be sufficient with your snack food.

Where to meet?

The meeting point is the Kirkton Woods stackyard: if you drive/walk up the new forest haul road (located halfway between the school and the old kirk) you will reach the timber stackyard where we stockpile all our logs and firewood. There is a large blue metal lorry container there on the right hand side which is where we’ll meet up, drop off bags, food, tools, spare clothes etc and discuss the plans for the morning. The area where we will be working is then just next to the stackyard so no distance at all to walk to and from the shelter to the work area.

And (again) what exactly is the point?

Where to start!…

  • You’ll be contributing to and improving your own ‘backyard’: planting trees, enhancing new ponds, developing new walks and rest areas, building new structures and social spaces in the woods that will ultimately make Lochcarron an even better place to live and recreate.
  • The fresh air and gentle exercise should be good for you.
  • You may meet new (like-minded and different) people from your community that you never even knew existed.
  • You’ll probably develop skills, knowledge (and confidence?) you never even knew you were capable of.

Remember Kirkton Woods has only been in community ownership a little over 2 years. But it is now Ours and Forever. And you can help shape its brighter, more environmentally friendly and more accessible future.

See you at 10 on Wednesday then!

Many Thanks,

Nic Bullivant

PS look at all these people who think this is a good idea and have put money into it. Thanks, folks!   N.

LCDC – New board members

Lochcarron Community Development Company is a community run charity. As one of the HIE supported community anchor organisations, together with its Development Officer; LCDC’s  role is to identify, prioritise, develop and deliver sustainable legacy through creative employment opportunities, culture, heritage and educational activities. Overall, to support  social, economic, and cultural activities to strengthen the community  – increase income levels, assist population retention, and enhance community resilience. It is administered by a duly elected board of volunteer directors.

LCDC is currently managing and developing Kirkton woodland, the smithy Community Hub, a Tree house venue for hire, a volunteer run visitor information point, monthly local market days, the ‘iGallery’- a local craft & gift retail space, educational projects with Lochcarron Primary school, housing options, developing a heritage all access footpath network and developing The strathcarron Artisan Dairy project.

With such a wide range of ongoing activities and projects we need to expand the board of directors. We are looking for people with time, commitment, energy and enthusiasm to join our Board and take things to the next level. We are particularly seeking people with good business acumen, experience in catering, general charity administration, building maintenance, good team skills and people with experience managing large projects.

If you would like to get involved at this exciting time please get in touch at infosmithyhub@gmail.com.


Voluntary workparties in 2016

Work parties &
Volunteering Days in 2016

all welcome

Sunday 28th February 1030 – 1530
Help Get the Smithy Community Hub tidy and ready for visitors. Tasks to suit all abilities, Lunches provided.

Regular Volunteer days will be monthly, on the second Sunday of that month.

Rendezvous at the Smithy Hub for 11am.
Work parties will then take place at either 
Kirkton Woodland or The Smithy Hub depending on circumstances.

Lunches provided.

20th March
10th April
8th May
12th June
10th July
14th August
11th September
9th October
13th November

Tools and Safety items provided, please wear suitable outdoor clothing and foot wear.

For further information;



or  01520 722 232 or 952