Registered Charity SCO40977

Join us on Facebook


Shorefront Project

Shorefront Update – January 2021

FAO of Arisaig residents and businesses – we have been disappointed to hear that our grant application to the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund has been unsuccessful. On the positive side purchase of the land from the MacMillan Trust has been completed and our planning application for the proposed scheme has been approved, without conditions, by the Highland Council. In addition we have received a grant of £1000 from the Co-op Bank to be spent on an accessible picnic table and interpretive signs.
As a community we are now faced with a choice – do nothing or do something. ACT would like to hear your views on whether to simply leave things as they are or to start a community DIY effort to improve the shorefront area. To this end we will be putting a simple survey question on our website. The poll will be active until the end of February. We appreciate that not everyone has online access and this is just a simple snapshot to gauge whether or not there is appetite for action. If there is, we will make sure there is consultation and involvement as the project moves forward.
If you have suggestions for action and/or would like to volunteer your time then please email us at We’d love to hear from you.

Shorefront Update 21 Oct 2020

The final design has now been submitted to the Highland Council for planning approval. The reference is 20/03984/FUL and if you wish to comment on the application you can do so either by logging into the HC website or in writing. The full documents submitted for the planning application are available to download here.

In addition to the planning application we have submitted a grant application to the Scottish Government’s Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund. The decision on this application is due in early December and we’ll let you know how we get on with another update on this website.

Please note the following about the planning submission:
● The question whether or not to retain the three large bins has been passed to the Community Council for resolution.
● The proposed site for the new bin stores opposite the bottle bank was chosen in preference to retaining them in their current position which would be either at the expense of a parking space or further widening of the car park and removal of some rock close to the Christmas tree site.
● Detailed design of some of the key elements has not been done and will be open to further discussion if the grant application is successful. These include the coastal garden, the interpretive seating area, the exact form of the benches and picnic tables and the planters on the verge opposite the bottle bank.
● Any volunteers wishing to take the lead on any of these elements would be very welcome!

Please contact us at

Steve Westwood
Shorefront Project Manager

Shorefront Planning Application Documents

Shorefront Update 21 Sep 20

We have received the latest design for the project
● This is almost the final proposed design but there are a couple of more changes:
○ The Christmas tree’s position will be changed back to where it always goes
○ The decision on the bin store is still pending
● The precise details of the coastal garden and the circular seating area are not final and more detail will be made published as it becomes available. Further input on these two aspects is very welcome.
● Parking in the main car park will be limited to two hours.
● Signs will direct people to the LSIC car park and IF allowed by the NHS the Health Centre car park.
● There will be signs to direct visitors to key locations e.g. Toilets, pier, LSIC, PO. These will possibly be mounted on the existing lamp posts. A maximum of three signs are envisaged.
● Part of the path will be done in natural stone pavers, please see below.

Fund Raising
The project is to be funded by a grant from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund. We have been selected to submit a grant application no later than 14 October.
There is no guarantee we will be successful and if we are to succeed one of the things we need to demonstrate is that we have match funding of 30% of the project costs. We can “raise” this money in a number of ways:
● By using the value of the land.
● Through volunteer hours (e.g. project manager’s time).
● By sponsorship
I conducted a straw poll on the “We Love arisaig” Facebook group to see if people would be prepared to sponsor a bench or picnic table. I had an overwhelmingly positive response and am confident we can raise sufficient funds to pay for all the benches and tables and have surplus to go to other elements.
Another form of sponsorship will be to give people the opportunity to make a donation for an engraved natural stone paver to be set in part of the path. Similar projects around the UK have raised thousands of pounds in this way and it has the potential to do the same for us.

Steve Westwood
Shorefront Project Manager



Shorefront Update 28 Aug 2020

Having collated the feedback from the recent community consultation we have re-briefed our designer. We now have a revised shorefront proposal – please see the document Concepts Layout Option 4”. We have also put together some visual ideas for seating, interpretation boards etc and these can be viewed in the other attachment “Arisaig Shorefront ConceptsV.1”.  We would be grateful if you could take into account and comment on the following:

  • This is not yet the final proposed design.
  • The question whether or not to retain the three large bins has been passed to the Community Council for resolution.  Please let them know your views!
  • IF the bins are to be retained then a better site than the one shown on the design appears to be close to where they are now and where the bike stand is shown on the new design.  This would allow better access.  The intention is to house them in a simple Scottish larch clad structure with a green roof.  The design will be done in consultation with those who empty the bins.
  • The bike stand could go where the bin store is shown, i.e. opposite the bottle bank.  The bike stand will be similar to the existing one which may be retained.  It would be possible to have two or three small stands in convenient places around the site e.g. close to the circular seating area and one of the picnic tables.
  • The proposed new parallel parking bay opposite the bottle bank would have a proper kerb to stop people driving onto the verge and planters or raised beds to form an additional barrier – I recognise this parking is contentious and am seeking a majority view.  If this bay is not provided and cars are prevented from parking on the verge as they do now it may be necessary to put no parking signs on one side of the road.
  • Signs will inform motorists that there is no overnight parking and also that a voluntary donation for car parking would be appreciated.  Parking will be limited to 1 hour.
  • Signs will direct people to the LSIC car park and IF allowed by the NHS, the Health Centre car park too.
  • There will be signs to inform visitors of the location of Tourist Information (the LSIC), the public toilets, the shop & PO, the Arisaig Hotel, Old Library and Arisaig Marine.  These will possibly be mounted on the existing lamp posts.  
  • The proposed path from the car park to the LSIC has been dropped for the time being.

Shorefront Update 13th August

Arisaig Community Trust (ACT) would like to thank all the residents who took the time and trouble to respond to our survey on the shorefront project.  These responses varied from simple, short answers to the survey questions to comprehensive reviews of the proposals and in one case a marked up plan!  In all we had 34 returns.  Of these 20 were clearly in favour of the project and 8 were clearly against it.  The others were either mostly somewhere in between and with suggestions for alterations to the proposed designs.  As you will imagine some of the views are diametrically opposed, ranging from a simple “No I don’t support the project” to a simple “Yes, Option 3”.  Clearly it won’t be possible to satisfy everyone entirely!

The project manager, Steve Westwood, is now working on revisions to the designs and will be continuing discussions with residents as these changes progress.  Please do not hesitate to contact him via our email address ( if you have any further suggestions or would like to arrange a meeting with him.  Ideally we would have public meetings in the Astley Hall but this simply isn’t possible at the moment. The feedback we have received so far will be discussed with our designer with a view to having a “final” design ready for the end of August, at the latest, for further community consultation.

The bulk of the project funding is to come from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund (RTIF).  To date we have submitted an Expression of Interest (last autumn) and now have to submit a draft grant application by 25th September and the final one by 14th October.  We also have to have submitted a planning application by then. Given the planning and grant application processes it is unlikely we will be in a position to start work before the Spring of next year.  With visitors starting to arrive, Spring is a poor time to start digging up the car park!  In addition, the uncertainty resulting from the pandemic makes it unlikely we will be able to start site work until Autumn 2021.

Concept proposals

Click on the links below to view the revised concepts in PDF

Select each button below to view or download a copy of the 3 proposals which formed the basis of our community consultation in early August 2020