Community Services Upgrade
Managing a water and sewage supply are not particularly glamorous projects, but are pretty essential to allow any future development to take place. In most parts of the UK these will be provided for you, but there are plenty of parts of rural Scotland where its down to individuals to manage their supply. Ever since the Foundation took over, the sewage system down at the bunkhouse end of the village was a problem. The original system had been broken and repaired so many times it wasnâ€™t possible to work out what was going where. Whilst all sewage did go into septic tanks, these sometimes overflowed and did not deal with all the grey water which collected into a ditch system – neither pleasant to look at, nor to try and dredge clean.
The building of the new Rural Homes for rent housing provided the incentive to clean up the area and to put in a new system.
We considered many options for how best to treat the sewage but came back to the simplest system of a large septic tank with a long outfall, most of which is slotted to provide a soakaway
More recently we had been having problems with the water supply, with the environmental health department being concerned about the 2 sources of water for the area. If we were going to have to dig up the road to put in new pipes for sewage it made sense to put in a new water supply at the same time.
A bid was submitted to rural priorities but with new rules coming in we had to resubmit to LEADER and were fortunately successful. Funding also came from HIE, Foundation reserves and Highland Housing Alliance Charitable Trust. Highland council discretionary fund also supported consultants costs. Wallace Stone were commissioned to draw up the project, and provided invaluable advice.
The scheme was implemented by a number of contractors and is now up and running. The water system has had a few teething glitches but with regular maintenance this should not be an issue. We have now employed Willie Dowlen ( who also works on our hydro scheme) to oversee the new systems. The works have vastly improved the area – from a health, visual and environmental point of view. More importantly, it also allows us to take forward development plans for the area.