I had been in London at the weekend and took the train to the airport on the way home as usual.  It was quiet when we boarded and found a seat easily behind an elderly well-to-do couple sitting diagonally on a 4 seater.  I soon noticed that the man had edged our suitcase forward and was using it as a convenient armrest whilst reading the paper and wasn’t too happy when the bairn retrieved it suddenly.  As the train began to fill, their empty seats remained free of people  but laden with bags until a young woman got on with a baby and proceeded toRead More →

We have been glued to the TV this week watching the swimming at the Commonwealth Games and feeling so proud of how they have all done.  Swimming is probably one of the few sports where there is not the same sporting rivalry between the nations as it is such an individual sport.  I was a swimmer as is one of my children so I understand only too well the hours of training and discipline that the athletes have put in and to see all the swimmers not only qualifying for the events but reaching the finals is incredible.  Hearing the roar of Flower of ScotlandRead More →

Like everywhere else in the country,  the recent local election results were particularly fortunate for us in Highland Region.  SNP councillors were returned in every ward bar one with the majority being returned on first preference votes and many successes with two candidate wards.  The results were expected in one way as the campaigns had been positive with the candidates putting in a tremendous amount of work but unexpected in the sense that Highland is traditionally seen as Independent and the opposition parties and candidates had in some cases fought personal and hostile campaigns.  As some councils were won outright by the SNP, others beganRead More →

With less than a fortnight to go before the local council elections are officially called, candidates for the different parties are beginning to make themselves known over social media and the local rumour mill is in full force filling in any gaps. There has been an interesting development up here; a Tory Councillor from Inverness has announced that he will stand in our constituency as he feels not enough is done for rural communities.  He has been getting himself involved in local issues for a few months now which seemed strange but now makes sense and in the press release he states that he isRead More →

I’m not long back from a week in London with my daughters that has been postponed several times in the last 18 months and spent the prior week panicking in case any of us were infected with Covid as once again rates in Wick were proportionately the highest in Highland. An abundance of masks, hand sanitiser and lateral flow tests packed to save time hunting for them when down there, we took the train to Inverness before flying south. I don’t think I’ve ever been on the train since masks were made mandatory without the majority complying and on the plane, it appeared to beRead More →

The SNP in Caithness has long had a difficult relationship with the Dounreay complex, a series of sites run by various companies and government departments catering for different developments but all with nuclear technology at their heart.  Whilst the party is firmly anti-nuclear, and many individual members share this view, there has never been any escaping the fact that Dounreay was the largest employer in the county and job security and career advancement whilst staying in your local area could override concerns either emotional or moral.  Always seen as unique in Scotland anyway, Caithneseian members trod a fine line between wanting the removal of theRead More →

We were lucky enough to partake in an online video meet with the First Minister tonight to discuss aspects of the agreement that will see the Scottish Greens have shared governance, and answer questions that SNP members might have.  It was very well attended but it was apparent that the members shared the same concerns and that these are not the concerns that those in the more populated areas of Scotland have.  The agreement has compromises relating to manifesto commitments and affords the Greens two ministerial posts.  Although in general the two parties share many similarities they are not the same and there is an undercurrentRead More →

As England begins its divergence from the rest of the UK in relation to Covid rules and regulations and relies on the public to do the right thing according to their conscience, the gap between England and the other nations grows wider.  With all restrictions lifted south of the border and a statement that we need to learn to live with the  virus, there was some backtracking at the last minute when the advice on masks changed from don’t wear them to wear them in crowded spaces if you wish.  Since then, things have continued to develop unsurprisingly with the Health Minister catching and recovering from covidRead More →

I wrote before about changes the Electoral Commission was proposing to implement in the Highlands and how there was a consultation ongoing into it.  The initial proposals were insulting, reinforcing the belief that we carry up here that we dont matter and many objected including those not remotely interested in politics as it was seen as yet another attempt to erode services from the far north and into Inverness. It was only a few years ago that the electoral commission altered the boundaries within Caithness moving it from 3 wards with 9 councillors to two wards with 8.  Previously there had been representation for theRead More →

As the polls close at the end of this election campaign, things will be very different from normal.  There is to be no overnight count and we will all have to wait a couple of days for all the results, not just the outlying areas that are historically later to declare due to the distances involved in getting boxes to the Count.  In a campaign like no other, where we have not been able to enjoy the social side in the same way as we normally do and where we have an unprecedented array of list parties to choose from, it will not be forgottenRead More →