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Graveyard shift - clearing trees at Inverness cemetery

By Neil MacPhail

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Clearing storm damage at Tomnahurich Cemetery, Inverness.
Clearing storm damage at Tomnahurich Cemetery, Inverness.

A contractor has been taken on by Highland Council to clear away trees damaged in an Inverness cemetery by a storm - two years ago.

Workers with Aurora Energy Services, which has an Inverness base, and sister company Wick based Aurora NMS have been on site carrying out the work in Tomnahurich Cemetery.

Aurora Energy's Inverness based operations director David Duguid explained that as well as heavy marine work they also carry out specialist lifting work where a lighter touch is required.

He said: "We use small tracked equipment that can get into difficult spots without causing damage to the surrounding environment. We do a lot of work in remote spots such as erecting masts or pylons in environmentally sensitive areas.

"You can imagine you have to be careful working around graves."

Aurora NMS was formed when Aurora Energy Services acquired Caithness based Northern Marine Services last year.

A council spokesman said: "We have contractors in the cemetery for four days clearing the tree stumps from the storm damage two years ago."

The historic cemetery is laid out on and around the 65m high steep sloped hill, is heavily wooded in places, and exposed to any high winds that blow.

The cemetery opened in 1864 and was run by Inverness Cemetery Company until 1909 when it was acquired by Inverness burgh.

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