Local Interest

Local news stories supplied to or wrtitten by us


Moray Council selected for national netball pilot

MORAY Council has been selected as one of the first local authorities in Scotland to pilot walking netball.

Working in partnership with Netball Scotland, Moray Council’s sports development team will trial this new initiative in Forres from the start of September for five weeks.

A slower version of the game, which is suitable for all ages and abilities, walking netball is tailored to the needs of each participant. Newbies are welcome and a safe, comfortable and fun environment is guaranteed, as well as an outline of all the rules.

The hour-long sessions will run at Forres House Community Centre each Monday from September 4, starting at 9.30am. Joining in is free for Fit Life? members, or £3 a session for non-members.

Community Council elections under way in Moray

Elections for Moray’s 20 community councils are now under way.

Nomination packs are available for prospective candidates looking to stand for any of the 208 seats available across the region. Larger community councils like Elgin and Heldon have up to 18 seats, while smaller ones like Dyke Landward have seven.

Community council members get involved in a range of issues from environmental projects and organising local events, to campaigning on local issues, conducting local surveys and organising public meetings.

Prospective candidates have until 4pm on Thursday 28 September to lodge nomination papers with the Returning Officer at Moray Council’s election office.

If more candidates apply than there are seats available on any particular community council, an election will be held by postal ballot during October.

Nomination papers are available on Moray Council's website, by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or calling 01343 563334.

Approval for Portgordon icehouse development

An application to build a coffee shop, wellbeing centre and manager’s flat as part of the development of Portgordon ice house was today given the go-ahead by planners.

The proposal, which was recommended for refusal by planning officers, received 48 letters of support and seven objections.

The applicant and supporters addressed a special hearing of Moray Council’s Planning and Regulatory Services committee.

Following the submissions Cllr Marc Macrae proposed a motion to approve the application, seconded by Cllr David Bremner. Chair of the committee, Cllr Claire Feaver, proposed the application be refused and was seconded by Cllr Amy Patience.

Cllr Macrae’s motion was carried seven votes to three. Voting for approval were Councillors Macrae, Bremner, Divers, Eagle, Edwards, Laing and Wilson. Cllr Donald Gatt joined Cllrs Patience and Feaver in upholding the officer’s recommendation to refuse.

Find Your Polling Place Online

An online tool has been developed to help voters in Moray find their assigned polling place.

The search facility is up and running ahead of the Moray Council elections on May 4 and the General Election on June 8.

The easy-to-use tool – which can be accessed at http://www.moray.gov.uk/pollingplace - enables voters to identify their polling place by entering either their home address or the elector number on their polling card.

There are currently 58 polling places across the Moray Council area and voters should be aware that changes to ward boundaries for the council elections may mean their polling station has changed.

Temporary closure of Wards level crossing

A busy section of road in Elgin will be closed to traffic for two days at the end of this month.

The closure of the level crossing at the Wards will apply from 8am to 8pm on Saturday, April 29 and Sunday, April 30.

Diversions will be in operation via Wards Road, Station Road, New Elgin Road and Edgar Road.

Vehicular access to business premises at the Wards will still be possible from Edgar Road, but not from Wards Road.

The closure of the level crossing will enable Network Rail and their contractor BAM Nuttall to install services in connection with new signalling.

Rent Rise Consultation

Council house tenants in Moray are to be consulted over the level of rent increase for the next three years.

In 2013 councillors agreed to raise rents by 4.5% over the following two years followed by a 5% increase for the eight years thereafter to help fund new house building

However, a recommendation that tenants be consulted on an increase of 3.5% or 4%, ahead of February’s budget meeting, was approved by full council on December 7th.

The consultation will run until January 13th.

Members were told that the housing service business plan could sustain investment of 50 new homes a year for the next seven years based on a 3.5% rent increase or 70 new homes over the same period with a 4% increase.

Moray currently has the lowest average rent level among Scottish local authorities.