About the Highlands
- At 26,484 sq kms, the land mass of the Highlands is 33% of the Scottish total. It stretches 334 km from Dunnet Head to Dalwhinnie and 304km from Ardnamurchan to Auldearn.
- Overall the Highland Council has a population density of 9 people per km2 compared to 66 per km2 for the whole of Scotland but this ranges from ‘highs’ of 18 people per km2 in the Inner Moray Firth to just 2 people per km2 in Sutherland.
- Over 1/3 of our area is designated as being of national and international heritage importance. The Cairngorms National Park is one of only two national parks in Scotland.
- Our coastline is 3,065 miles – 21% of the Scottish total. The region is home to Loch Morar, Scotland’s deepest loch at 330m.
- Approximately 15% of Highland is forested.
- 80% of the land rises to over 300 metres. This includes Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, Fort William at 1343m.
- Inverness is the administrative and transport centre of the Highlands. It was awarded city status in 2000.
- Around 7% of the population speak Gaelic (indigenous language of the western parts of the Highlands).
About the Highland Council
The Council has 80 elected members, serving on 14 four-member wards and 8 three member wards. Members will serve on the Council until 2012. The total revenue budget for 2011/2012 is £595 million; the capital budget is £71 million. The housing revenue budget is £44 million and the housing revenue account capital budget is £16 million.
Our responsibilities include:
- 56 nursery units, 183 primary schools, 29 secondary schools and 3 special schools and we educate 31,723 pupils, 16,954 primary, 14,769 secondary pupils. Gaelic Medium Education is delivered to 718 primary school pupils in 21 primary schools and 349 pupils in 12 secondary schools.
- 4,200 miles of local road network
- 25 harbours, 1321 bridges and 80 marine facilities
- 114 bus contracts, 2 ferry contracts and 23 community transport schemes.
- 21 recycling centres, 200 recycling points & provide kerbside collections to 90,000 urban and rural households. Our recycling rate is 34% and our target for 2013 is 50%.
- 17 day centres, 8 for adults with learning disabilities, 21 care homes and 600,000 hours of home care per year. 7 care homes and 2 respite care units for children.
- £14.26 million in the Highland LEADER/ Convergence programmes.
- 13,700 council houses and 1900 non housing buildings
- £20 million which is allocated to improve energy efficiency in 3,000 council homes.
Highlands in Europe
The Highland Council has produced a programme of action, ‘Strengthening the Highlands’ which sets out its priorities for making the Highlands one of Europe’s leading regions.
The Council aims to create sustainable communities with more balanced population growth and economic development across the Highlands and to build a fairer and healthier Highlands.
The Programme contains a total of 93 commitments across five main themes and a further 15 actions to work with the Scottish and UK Governments. The themes are:
- What we will do for children and families
- What we will do for communities and older people
- What we will do for the economy
- What we will do for our environment
- What we will do to make The Highland Council more effective and efficient
EU Funding and Policy enquiriesGordon Summers Principal European Officer The Highland Council Glenurquhart Road Invernes IV3 5NX Tel 0044(0)1463 702508