Local Interest

Local news stories supplied to or wrtitten by us


Council Lands Coveted Planning Awards

Moray Council has won an award at the Scottish Government’s Awards for Quality in Planning ceremony for its Creating Places in Moray initiative.

The submission, submitted by the council in partnership with Architecture and Design Scotland (A&DS), explained the steps that have been taken to improve the design standards of development and promote better placemaking across Moray.

The benefits of high quality design include creating places that are attractive, safe and well connected with their own sense of identity which, in turn, helps to establish communities, promotes healthier lifestyles, and encourages inward investment.

Winning the award reflects the commitment and leadership of the council to work together with its partners to improve design standards which is supported by the three key steps of training, policy and process.

The council’s head of development services, Jim Grant, said: “The award recognises our commitment to improve design standards in new development across Moray.

Moray businesses urged to enter for awards

Moray businesses urged to enter for awards.

Businesses in Moray are being urged to put themselves forward for this year’s Highlands and Islands business excellence awards.

Entries from across the region are being invited for the awards, which are organised by the Scottish Council for Development and Industry.

They provide a unique platform to showcase the achievements of the area’s businesses and celebrate excellence in a range of sectors.

The 2016 awards will be presented at the annual dinner on Friday, September 9 at the Drumossie Hotel in Inverness in front of 350 guests.

Entries, which close on August 1, are being sought in a number of categories, including international business, marine business, outstanding business ambassador, research and innovation, business service and engagement, environmental sustainability, people development and outstanding business achievement.

New Speyside-Elgin Bus Service

A new bus serving will take to the road next week linking Speyside with Elgin.

The Moray Council-operated service - number 366 – will run every Monday and Wednesday.

It will leave Aberlour at 9am and travel via Marypark, Knockando, Lower Knockando Archiestown and Rothes before arriving at the Elgin bus station at 10.20am.

The return journey will start at the bus station at 1.20pm and arrive back in Aberlour at 2.40pm.

Connections will also be available to and from Carron and Dailuaine.

Timetables are being distributed in communities along the route and are also available here online.

National entitlement cards and the Young Scot card can be used on the route.

Moray Man to Surf for Scotland

Moray Man to Surf for Scotland

Lossiemouth surfer Donald Peace is to join the Scottish Surf Team to compete at the ESF European Surfing Championships in Morocco next month.

Donald (30), who runs the New Wave Surf School based in Lossiemouth, is one of only seven team members chosen by the Scottish Surfing Federation from across Scotland to travel to Morocco and represent their country.


Read more: Moray Man to Surf for Scotland

Moray Life Supports

Moray Life Supports

Donald Peace from Lossiemouth gets in some training ahead of his appearance for Scotland.


Moray Life Supports


The Scottish Surf Team


Join us in our quest to ensure that The Scottish Surf Team raises enough money to pay for their participation in the Eurosurf (European Surf Championships) in Morocco.


Elgin western link road application refused

Plans for Elgin’s western link road were rejected by Moray councillors today following a one-and-a-half day public hearing.

Members of the council’s planning and regulatory services committee refused the planning application by seven votes to six.

The £8.5million scheme had been promoted by the council as a means of easing traffic congestion in Elgin and helping to encourage economic development within the town.

It would have seen Edgar Road extended to meet the southern end of Wittet Drive and the construction of a new road bridge over the Aberdeen-Inverness railway line as well as a new signalled junction where Wittet Drive meets the A96 at West Road.

The application attracted almost 800 objections and most of the first day of the hearing was taken up with presentations by opponents of the scheme who claimed it would result in increased traffic on Witted Drive and Edgar Road and unacceptable noise pollution and visual impact along the proposed route.

The motion to refuse the application came from committee chairman Councillor Douglas Ross seconded by Councillor Gordon McDonald. The amendment to approve came from Councillor John Cowe and seconded by Councillor Allan Wright.

Councillor Ross said afterwards: “Today’s vote is a culmination of many years deliberations and for the campaigners who erected signs saying, “Are you listening Moray Council?” I think the planning committee showed them we were.

“Planning applications are often controversial and divide opinion and this one was no different but for me, after hearing the public submissions and the responses from the applicant and council officers, I wasn’t convinced this road was the best way forward.

“A number of issues remained uncertain, including noise mitigation, projected vehicle numbers and safety aspects. These were just some of the material planning considerations that led me to move refusal of the application and a majority of councillors agreed.

“I’m in no doubt that doing nothing is not an option but this scheme, in this location was not going to deliver the benefits required to take such a monumental decision to approve the application.

“This saga has gone on for too long and now the planning committee, appointed by the entire council, has spoken. The Western Link Road is not the way forward and campaigners against the route must be commended for the case they presented.”