A Moray village will be the first to benefit from a £160,000 action plan to help deal with erosion along its shoreline.
Members of the economic development and infrastructure committee today gave the go-ahead for a coastal change adaptation plan to be developed with Kingston the first community to benefit.
The money Moray Council will use for the plan comes from a £12 million Scottish Government fund for local authorities to put forward proposals to combat the impact of rising sea water and severe storms on coastal towns and villages.
SNP councillor for Fochabers Lhanbryde David Bremner broadly welcomed the plan and for Kingston to be the starting point, but accused previous councils of “kicking the can down the road” on the issue.
He said: “It’s good there’s recognition there is a problem, but it really is late in the day. I worry about the timescale of this.
“There is an issue now and people are worried now. The word adaptation doesn’t seem synonymous with doing something.”
He asked what discussions were being held with the land owner, the Crown Estate, and whether they were going to make a contribution. He was told talks had been held and would continue.
Conservative councillor for Fochabers Lhanbryde Marc Macrae said: “There has been this difficulty at Kingston for quite some time.
“It’s very welcome that the significant change has been recognised.”
He called for other parties including the Crown Estate and Sepa to get involved with the plan.
£160k will have to be spent in the next financial year
Residents in the village situated to the west of the River Spey, have raised concerns about a shingle ridge that sits to the north of a tidal lagoon, reducing the impact of waves on the land.
Moray Council officers have monitored the situation over the last nine years with little significant movement noticed until a storm in October last year.
The storm pushed shingle from the ridge into the lagoon, reducing its width and causing damage to the land bank.
The £160,000 is expected in the financial year 2022/23 and must be spent within the 12-month period.
It is thought more funding will become available after 2025.