Nairn – what matters to you

Thanks to our more than 450 respondents to the NICE Initial Community Survey, we can see the main focus headers for all of us in Nairn.

We will be working to explore how your Local Place Plan responds to these focus areas, and more widely across underpinning themes which cross all of the main focus headings:

Infrastructure First

Our infrastructure considerations will drive scenarios which will allow us to create a dynamic response to the Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan and to the broader Highland Wide Local Development Plan. Working within these scenarios, we can focus on key questions.

What if the A96 by-pass is built? What if it isn’t?

What if our sewerage system is upgraded? What if it isn’t?

These questions can be asked across the by-pass, utilities, sewerage, and flood defences when assessing our capacity for more housing, for business opportunity, for employment growth and so on.

Green/ Resilient Nairn

Ensuring that we consider a future for Nairn that responds to climate change, embraces renewable energy, and drives a low carbon centre.

When we consider a Green/ Resilient Nairn, how does this impact on Employment? What form of employment opportunity can Nairn lead on – future technologies? Clean energy?

Nairn for All Ages

Considering how the Local Place Plan, the IMFLDP, and the HWLDP contribute to a ‘balanced’ age demographic in Nairn, attracting and retaining young families with quality of life and employment opportunities.

In a Nairn for all ages, what does getting around actually mean? Is this cycle paths for our children to safely navigate their way to school? Is this safe pavements, suitable for wheeled access – from prams to mobility buggies? Is it getting to work, without using the car?

Perhaps Nairn for all ages is about creating a sense of place that encourages our young professionals and families to stay in Nairn, to drive local business, and to create a circular economy?

Nairn Led Development

By looking after Nairn’s Common Good Assets, assessing, and developing community ownership to keep existing heritage buildings in public use, whilst working in partnership with local authorities to modernise key public amenities for the 21st century. Nairn led development can foster local governance and decision making, meaning Nairn’s success can be based on the needs and wants of the community.

How can our assets be best used to fulfil our Town Centre development? How does this all work with the Nairn BID team? How can the local business community help make things happen for Nairn? Can these assets be used to grow community engagement?

Whilst our Initial Community Survey is closed, if you have anything you would like to add, to discuss, or to suggest, we would love to hear from you. You can contact us by email at, drop in to our Thursday base at the Nairn Community Centre, or direct your thoughts through you local Community Council or Community Group, who we will be working with on 15th January 2024.

The results are in!

30th November 2023

Over the summer, NICE undertook an Initial Community Survey as groundworks for the forthcoming Local Place Plan. The survey was directly posted throughout Nairn, and available online. We received more than 450 individual responses from across Nairn and Nairnshire, and through all age groups. Your input is what we need to make the Local Place Plan work, and to ensure that Nairn thrives as the town we all want it to be.

As we analyse your responses, find trends, groups of ideas, and begin to prepare the foundations for our Community Consultations, one of our first outputs is a word cloud. A word cloud finds key words in all of the responses, and simply arranges those in a descending size and centrality from most frequent to less frequent. This gives us a flavour of what you have said.

What do you like about living in Nairn?

Is there anything you don’t like about being in the Nairn area?

Whilst we continue to prepare for the Community Consultation phase of preparing the Nairn Local Place Plan, we would love to hear from you. You can engage with your local community council, or get in touch with us directly at

Local Place Plan Project Coordinator Appointed

23rd November 2023

NICE is pleased to welcome Kenny Spink on board as Local Place Plan Coordinator for Nairnshire. He will be taking forward in early 2024 an intensive programme of public engagement across Nairnshire and beyond with help from Highland Regeneration Fund. 

Kenny will be ably supported by specialist advisers, Becky Richmond (currently Black Isle Place Plan Coordinator) , Tibor Bandula (a building conservation specialist) and local website expert Ian Colquhoun.

We also have assistance from Ewen McIntosh – a Place Making officer from Highland Council and Iain Macpherson from Planning Aid Scotland. All will be ably supported by community volunteers, including senior pupils from Nairn Academy.   

If you’d like to help just let us know on and look out for more information on and our Facebook page for how you can get involved to have your say on what goes in the Local Place Plan in 2024. 

Local Place Plan public engagement will begin in 2024 with an ‘information download’ event for local community organisations. This will be supported by Planning Aid Scotland, who will explain how the Local Place Plan process will work and begin to explore some of the key themes emerging from our initial Local Place Plan Community Survey. Our summer survey received hundreds of responses from across Nairnshire, telling us what local people want for their place in the future (more on that on our next post).

Job Vacancies with NICE. Help us to work with the Nairnshire community to create a Local Place Plan

Two part time posts are available for immediate start (October) till end February 2024 to help NICE and the Local Place Plan steering group deliver an intensive programme of community engagement to create a Local Place Plan for the wider Nairn area.

The two posts detailed below are funded by Highland Council’s Community Regeneration Fund till 1st March. Find below Job Descriptions

Local Place Plan Coordinator ( part time for 5 months, 2 days per week/or equivalent)

Local Place Plan Administrator(part time for 5 months, 15 hours per week)

Application Deadline . Please use the form below to apply for both posts by 5pm Thursday 6th October indicating on front page which post you are applying for. Return all completed forms to

NICE Application Form

Interviews will take place week beginning 10th October, with appointments as soon as possible.

NICE is actively seeking further funding streams to continue this community led work through 2024 and beyond. to complete the Local Place Plan for Nairn area, and begin to ‘deliver’ on the priorities which have been defined by local people.

NICE AGM Notice 2023


Ninth Annual General Meeting of


Company No: SC388110; Charity No: SC042118

will be held in the

Multi Purpose(Dulsie)Room at Nairn Community and Arts Centre

on Tuesday 3rd October 2023 at 7pm

All welcome

-A Nairn Local Place Plan Community Drop In Event will be open from 4 to 7pm-  

Come along early for a cuppa to share your priorities for the future of Nairn and Nairnshire.

AGENDA 2023 NICE AGM (7pm)



3/Attendance and Proxies

4/Minute of last AGM 20 Sept 2022

5/Presentation of NICE Accounts for the year ended 30 November 2022

6/Annual Review – Chairman’s Report 2023

7/Appointment of Directors

  • The following Directors will retire by rotation as provided by the Articles of the Company :Mandy Lawson, Caroline Gordon, Steve Westbrook, Steven Manders, Adrian Johnstone
  • All the above are agreeable to be reappointed

8/Presentation from Black Isle Local Place Plan team and formal launch of Local Place Plan process for the wider Nairn area

9/Invitation for members/local community to contribute

10/Any Other Business

NICE Members are encouraged to appoint a proxy to vote on their behalf if they are unable to attend. You can do this by completing our online form, by post or calling 07712 633342 . We require attendance of least 25 members in person or by proxy for a quorum at our AGM

Proxy forms should be received by the Company Secretary ( 16 Wilson Street, Nairn IV12 4NY) by 4 pm on Sunday  1st October  2023.

A copy of the company’s accounts for the years ended 30 November 2022 is available here .

Paper copies of this notice will be sent to all NICE members who have not yet registered email addresses with us or whose email addresses have ‘bounced’ last time. Please let us know by emailing if you change your address or email, or if you no longer wish to be a member.

DATED 15th September 2023 BY ORDER OF THE BOARD

Mandy Lawson  Secretary, 16 Wilson Street, Nairn IV12 4NY


If you are happy to receive communications from us by  e-mail, please let us know by contacting providing an up to date email contact address

You can find out more about your rights and choices and how we use your information in our GDPR policy . Please ask us for a paper copy if you require one.

This year, before our AGM there will be a ‘community drop in’ afternoon at Nairn Community and Arts Centre from 4- 7 to launch a Local Place Plan for this area.

Come along for a cuppa and a chat to share your priorities for the future of Nairn and Nairnshire.

You can still complete our Local Place Plan community survey online or on paper until 22nd September. The survey link or a copy to download, and latest information on the Local Place Planning process can be found on

All Systems Go for a community led Local Place Plan for the Nairn area!

NICE is delighted to announce that- IT IS HAPPENING AT LAST !
All systems are go for the first ‘community led’  Local Place Plan to be developed for the Nairn and Nairnshire area in 2023.

Please complete our initial Community Survey online here (click on link below)

or look out for paper copies of the survey in public buildings and shops around Nairn over summer. You can return your completed paper form to post boxes at Nairn Library and Community and Arts Centre . Just ask at the counter!

You can also download a copy of this survey below to print off and share with your friends, family and neighbours to fill in.

Local Place Plan volunteers from NICE , community councils and local business groups will be able to help you fill in the survey too. Look out for us at the Local Place Plan stall at Nairn Show 29 July and on the 19 August come and talk to us at the Wallace Bandstand at the Nairn Games and tell us what your priorities are for the future of the Nairn area.

A Local Place Plan gives the people who live here and use local services, the power to decide what the future priorities should be for development and use of land and buildings in their local area.

NICE, Nairn‘s Community Development Trust (with more than 600 local members across Nairnshire) is taking the lead on this community led process with two local Community Councils (Nairn River and Nairn West and Suburban) and Nairn BID business member organisation already on board.

This ‘steering group’ will be reaching out to everyone who lives and works in the local area to have a say in what goes into Nairnshire’s first ever community led Local Place Plan.

Our community engagement stands at the Nairn Show on 29th July and Nairn Games 19th August will start this important community led conversation to inform the future of Nairn and its surrounding area as a ‘county town’ .

Email if you’d like to help us with this or just share your thoughts on what Nairn needs. If you aren’t yet a NICE member and live in Nairnshire you can join for free via the Join NICE link on our Home page


Local Place Plans ( LPPs) are part of  the Scottish Government’s  new ‘National Planning Framework’ (known as NPF4) which replaced previous planning guidelines in February 2023 after many years of preparation.

This promises to ‘improve people’s lives by making sustainable, liveable and productive places’ and represents a significant shift away from top down, ‘developer led’ planning of how land and buildings are used, towards more ‘community driven’ plans.  


A Local Development Plan is produced by the local authority planning team, after consultation with the public, and sets out how places will change in the future.

A Local Place Plan is led and owned by the people who live in the area, but once adopted is recognised as a key document to be reflected in the Local Development Plan , and its content will be in future ‘material considerations’ in Planning decisions for the area.

The last time a separate ‘Nairnshire Plan’ was published by Highland Council was in 2001.. Since then Nairn has become part of the Inner Moray Firth ‘Local Development Plan’ and the Highland Wide Local Development Plan which are produced by Highland Council for a 10 year period.

A community led Local Place Plan will enable local residents to make sure that their priorities and needs are properly reflected in the next Highland wide Local Development Plan due out in 2027 which maps out future development of land for housing and business use.

In line with new SPF4 planning guidelines for local authorities, Highland Council as well as taking account of what local communities have laid out in their Local Place Plans, must prioritise town centre regeneration over out of town development, and take an ‘infrastructure* first’ approach to all new developments. They must also protect the local natural environment and support the transition towards zero carbon living.

‘Infrastructure’ means anything that physically supports day to day living of residents or operation of businesses in an area, such as roads, public transport, pedestrian and active travel routes, energy and water supplies, sewerage, drainage and flood defences and community facilities for education, shopping, health and recreation. 


To produce Nairn’s Local Place Plan, NICE will have volunteer support from local community and business groups, and a paid local coordinator who will be recruited soon.

NICE have applied to the Community Regeneration Fund to help fund a programme of intensive community engagement this autumn to make sure that as many local people as possible have their say in this Plan.

 Professional support from a Planning Aid Scotland consultant, and a place planning officer has also been offered by Highland Council

Between now and Xmas 2023 with your help the Nairn LPP team will be getting out and about in Nairnshire running a series of events and meetings wherever people want them, to talk with local people of all ages, community groups and businesses to find out what they want for this place. By early 2024 together we will pull together and agree with the local community a set of achievable priority actions, as a Local Place Plan for Nairn and its surrounding area.


We will use this Local Place Plan to help the local community to work together with public and private agencies to ‘deliver’ for Nairn from 2024.

Under the new ‘planning framework’, whatever Nairn residents choose to prioritise for the future of our area in our community led Local Place Plan in 2024 must be reflected in the next Highland wide Local Development Plan which Highland Council will publish in 2027

Having a Local Place Plan will help Nairnshire projects, groups and businesses access more public funding and private investment in future by:

1/making sure that local funding bids and proposals for new developments are a good fit with what the local community wants.

2/demonstrating that local communities, businesses and public sector are working together effectively to help the area thrive.

3/giving local communities a clear voice and influence to promote our area nationally and internationally as a great place to live, visit and invest


Local people know what this place needs and are best placed to advise on local plans.

We want everyone who lives here to get a say to make sure future developments in and around Nairn get it right for all those who live, work and visit here.


We will be preparing a series of public events, over the summer and autumn for you to come along to in person to contribute your views on what should be in this plan for Nairn .

 Look out on the NICE website, on local notice boards, the Inverness Courier ’Nairnshire’ edition and on social media for our programme of public engagement events and activities in 2023 and early 2024 .

Come and talk to us about your ideas for the Local Place Plan at our community stand at Nairn Show and at Nairn Games at the Wallace Bandstand. Please complete our initial Community Survey

We will be posting more questions on our webpages and other social media for you to think about and email your views back to us about what you think Nairn needs in future.

We will also give you the chance to put your ideas  on paper if you prefer ( email us on with anything you want to tell us about your priorities for the future of this area.) We plan to post out information to all Nairnshire households as soon as we have our autumn events programme ready

We hope you will join in this important conversation in whatever way you can and share your views on how you’d like to see Nairn develop in the future for the benefit of all.   


We will offer lots of ways to engage with this process. 

You don’t have to have a computer, use the internet or a smartphone or come out to public meetings.

We will reach out to wherever you are eg schools, care homes, rural areas, to make sure that everyone gets a say.  

Let us know if you’d like us to come to you or your group as we build our plans to engage with people in the local area over the coming months.

You can email and let us know what you need.

Help us make sure that a Local Place Plan for this area fully reflects what all the people who live here and use Nairn’s amenities want. 

We know that everyone will not share the same views but we will try to gather together the diverse needs and wants of the people who live in Nairn and Nairnshire before we ask you to help us focus in on common priorities, proposals for action, and doable projects which will become a Local Place Plan


The main headings and priority themes for this ‘community driven’ Local Place Plan will be defined by you

Other places in Highland who have developed their own community led Local Place Plans like the Black Isle, and Stratherrick and Foyers have covered themes such as Housing, Getting Around, Community Amenities,  Environment and Nature, Jobs and Businesses, Heritage and Tourism

Let us know the topics which you think are a particular priority for a locally led plan concerning the future use of land and buildings in the Nairn area.


If you’d like to help us as a volunteer, offer a personal view or ask a question – please drop us a line on  

This important conversation has started and we would love to hear from you.

NICE welcomes five new Directors to help with Nairn Local Place Plan

NICE is delighted to announce that it has recruited the following five new Directors to its Board.

Sharon Ellen – Area Director, Scotland North, Bank of Scotland

Reverend Steven Manders -recently returned to Nairn as minister of the United Reformed Church.

Caroline Gordon – Managing Director of Tulloch Timber at Grigorhill

Adrian Johnstone – Managing Director of GF Jobs Limited at Grigorhill

Henry Sleigh – recently appointed Chair of Nairnshire Farming Society

All live and work in the local area and bring an impressive array of professional business and community engagement experience to the table as NICE stands ready to play a leading role in facilitating a community led Local Place Plan for Nairn in 2023.

The 5 new recruits above will join 8 existing NICE Directors, Alastair Noble, Sam Hey, Magnus Swanson, Mandy Lawson, John Hart, Steve Westbrook, Hazel Clark and Hamish Bain to form a strong and inclusive team ready to support community groups, residents and businesses to feed into the local place planning process

We look forward to an exciting and productive year for Nairnshire

If you have a question, or idea to share with NICE send it to or talk to one of our Board members above.

If you would like to become a NICE member (for free!), and be added to our mailing list, you will find the application form on this website at top of the page where it says ‘Join NICE’ .