Moray SNP News
Moray MSP, Richard Lochhead, called a multiagency meeting including The Moray Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Newmill Communty Association and Keith and Cullen Councillor, Gary Coull, to look at options for moving forward and to find a long term solution for road and lane maintenance in Newmill.
The meeting, which took place on Thursday, follows ongoing talks between Richard Lochhead and the Newmill community and numerous unsuccessful attempts to get Newmill Estate to carry out repair work to the roads and lanes which are in a very poor state of repair. The meeting resulted in a commitment from The Moray Council to provide an estimated cost to bring the unadopted roads and lanes in the village up to an adoptable standard, which would then mean the Council could take over responsibility for their upkeep.
Furthermore, Highlands and islands Enterprise offered to assist the community by meeting with Newmill Community Association to look further at the community’s options going forward, including community ownership possibilities, albeit this is for information purposes at this point.
Commenting, Richard Lochhead said:
“I called a multiagency meeting to look at options for the Newmill Community who have faced an unacceptable and ongoing situation with roads and lanes in the village which have been left to deteriorate to a very poor standard by absent landlords. The community do not even know who the landowners are and numerous requests for repair made via the local factor have unfortunately been turned down.
“This leaves the community in the undesirable situation where they themselves need to look at alternatives and I welcome the Council’s promise to provide an estimate for the costs involved to bring the roads and lanes up to an adoptable standard as well as HIE’s offer to work with Newmill Community Association to further examine options available to the village.”
Councillor Gary Coull added:
“The meeting we held was extremely constructive and thanks must go to Richard Lochhead for bringing everyone together. I am glad that HIE have committed to working with the Community Association to see if a long term solution to the roads problem can be found.
“It’s not good enough for an absent land owner to neglect their land in this way. It is the members of the Newmill community that suffer because of that and I hope that a solution can be found for the good of the people in the village.”
Newmill Community Association Chair, Rhona Patterson commented:
“We were delighted to be invited to be part of such a productive meeting and we look forward to working with the Council, HIE and Richard Lochhead, whose ongoing involvement we are extremely grateful for.”