Dornoch South

Dornoch faced significant challenges due to the surge in traffic, particularly the growing influx of coaches and tour buses. This surge has placed considerable strain on the town’s infrastructure and environment. The narrow streets and limited parking facilities in Dornoch were originally designed to accommodate local traffic, making it increasingly difficult for larger vehicles to navigate and find suitable parking. The increased traffic congestion has not only disrupted the flow of local businesses but has also raised concerns about pedestrian safety in the town centre. A solution was required that could balance the demands of tourism with the preservation of the town’s historic charm and the well-being of its residents.


The unused land within the Dornoch South vicinity not only had the potential to address the town’s traffic problems but also presents prospects for various community initiatives. Once a vibrant hub of industry, this site had sadly fallen into a state of dereliction, becoming an unsightly eyesore for the community. It was previously occupied by John Grant & Sons (later known as Grants of Dornoch Ltd), which served as a prominent employer in Dornoch. However, the abattoir and meat processing factory that once thrived here ceased operations in 1994. It was then purchased by Aberdeen & Northern Marts (ANM) who continued meat processing until 2010, leaving behind a neglected and deteriorating landscape. Buildings were cleared in 2015 with support from the Vacant and Derelict Land Fund leaving a brown field site enclosed in Heras panels.


In March 2021, DACIC, the Dornoch Area Community Interest Company, stepped in to reclaim this neglected space. With support from The Scottish Land Fund and the assistance of the Vacant and Derelict Land Fund for essential ground investigations, DACIC embarked on a mission to transform this eyesore into a renewed asset for the community.


The new Dornoch South Car and Coach Park, owned by The Dornoch Area Community Interest Company and operated by Highland Council, officially opened its doors in June 2022. This modern facility offers ample parking space, catering to a variety of vehicles, including up to 6 coaches, 30 cars, 6 motorhomes, and features 4 electric vehicle (EV) charging points for environmentally conscious travellers.


The realization of the vehicle park project owes its existence to a coalition of funding sources, showcasing the collaborative effort to rejuvenate this space. Notably, contributions from the Tourism Infrastructure Fund, The Highland Coastal Communities Fund, Highlands and Islands Enterprise , The Rural Communities Ideas into Action, The Town Centre Fund, and Transport Scotland have played a crucial role. Additionally, The Dornoch Common Good Fund and a strategic loan from Highland Opportunity Investment Company have been pivotal in bringing this vision to life.

Dornoch Common Good Fund
Highland Coastal Communities Fund
Highland Opportunity Investments Ltd
The Highland Council
Tourism Infrastructure Fund
The Rural Communities Ideas Into Action
The Town Centre Fund
Highlands & Islands Enterprise