PR Grant Awards 2018-R2 Published on 29th June 2018

PRESS RELEASE CNSF2018PR030 (29/06/2018)


The Caithness & North Sutherland Fund has committed over £100k to seven community projects in its latest round of grant awards.

Jim MacGregor, CNSFund Chair said, ‘We are pleased the Fund continues to attract a good level of funding applications from groups to carry out improvements in their communities.  Our latest funding invests in a diverse range of worthy community projects that help to deliver long term improvements throughout the Dounreay travel to work area.’

The Rotary Club of Thurso was granted £29,750 towards constructing a surf support building at the popular surfing site at Thurso East.  The new watersports facility will provide shower, toilets and changing facilities and an open viewing shelter.  The internal space will include a multi-function club room, office and galley area.  Parking and safe access steps to the beach will also be created.    Picture: North Shore Surf Club surfer, Thurso Bay. Photographer: Malcolm Anderson

Kevin Sutherland, Thurso Rotary Club Project Coordinator said, ‘Three years ago, the Rotary Club of Thurso set out to deliver a new major community project and considered several proposals after consulting with local groups.  However, it was clear that a facility to support water sports & surfing on the north coast was a priority for the area.  Surfing in Thurso is very much part of our community and attracts many visitors which boosts the local economy, so receiving this grant is a fantastic step forward. The new facility has been designed with assistance from the North Shore Surf Club and will further develop Thurso East as a top surfing location and championship venue.’

Berriedale Church and Cemetery Association was awarded £20,000 towards refurbishing the former church building in Berriedale.  The Thomas Telford church which was built in 1826 is now managed by the local charity for the benefit of the community.   The historically important building has a distinctive bell tower and manse and is one of the few Telford parliamentary churches still standing that remains furnished and in its original layout.  The money will be spent on restoring the deteriorating exterior with a traditional lime harling to preserve the classic 19th century Telford building as a visitor attraction and community facility.

Lybster Community Improvement Fundraising Group was granted £20,000 towards the costs of refurbishing the main street play park in Lybster to improve the recreational play facilities in the village.   The funding will be used to purchase new, modern play equipment, picnic benches and to create a sensory garden area.  Safer surfacing and new fencing works will also be carried out.

Strathnaver Museum was awarded £12,354 towards creating a new project manager post to take forward an extensive redevelopment programme of the museum as a heritage hub for the North-West Sutherland area.  The redevelopment plans include a major refurbishment of the museum’s grade 2 listed building.  The refurbishment will provide improvements to the museum’s layout and facilities that will enhance the visitor experience.

Wick Golf Club was granted £8,500 towards purchasing a new low maintenance hybrid greens mower to help the club maintain its course greens to the quality standards expected.  The golf club provides an important recreational facility for the East Caithness area and also works with numerous visitor initiatives to promote and develop golf tourism in the area.

Freswick Hall Committee secured a grant of £8,000 towards refurbishing the Freswick hall kitchen.  The money will be used to equip the rural hall with a fully working modern kitchen that will enable the hall to be fully utilised and increase its community benefit.

Thurso Amateur Swimming Club was awarded £3,000 to upgrade the swimming club's old timing equipment with a new electronic timing system.  The new equipment will instantly capture, display and record swimmers’ finish times and orders and will enhance the swimming competition experience for both competitors and spectators.  The improvements will help the club to further develop and offer top class sport competition facilities for people living in the area.

The CNSFund is funded by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and distributes money to community organisations for projects that will increase the attractiveness of Caithness and north Sutherland as a place to live, work and invest. The Fund has a particular emphasis on achieving environment, social, culture and infrastructure improvements.  Applications are assessed on a quarterly basis and information on how to apply can be found at or by contacting the Fund Coordinator David Shearer on  Tel: 07841 204 982.