Community Projects & Facilities

Voluntary groups

There are over 50 voluntary groups in Tain, all thriving and widely supported.  A database of all groups is maintained by Tain Initiative Group, with contact details available.  This is also available through the Tain community website and will be printed in the soon to be published community directory.

Tain Community Council sits at its full allocation of 16.  At each Community Council election there are always more nominations than places available, which demonstrates the support and willingness of the community to be involved in community matters.

Tain Initiative Group acts as an umbrella group for many of the groups in Tain.  The Initiative Group is made up of members of all the main groups in Tain, to enable each group/organisation to share their ideas, priorities with each other and to ensure the community works together.  The Initiative Group became a charitable company in 2003.  The Initiative Group employs a part-time Project Officer, who works with the volunteers in the community to develop projects, raise funds and provides a hugely valuable administrative and financial support to groups.  In 2001 the Initiative Group carried out a household survey of every household in Tain and has used the results to form a plan for development of the town over 5 years.  Since 2002 over 30 local projects, identified as priorities by the community, have been carried out.

Tain Gala

The Tain Gala is renowned as one of the best galas in Scotland, having been in existence from 19 years.  The Gala Association prides itself on doing its best for the community of Tain and the surrounding district.  Not only does it organise and finance a first-class gala week but also it arranges many other events in Tain throughout the year.  The Gala Association prides itself on bringing the community together.  Events throughout the week include something for everyone including: children’s fancy dress events, float parades, children’s entertainers and shows, tea dances and family ceilidhs, sports events, pet shows, Red Arrows display, parachutes displays, discos and various centre ring events.  Tain Gala attracts visitors from far and wide and provides a huge boost for the local economy.

Tain Highland Gathering

Tain Highland Gathering, sponsored by Glenmorangie Whisky, is approaching its 14th  year.  Each year this huge event attracts pipers, dancers and athletes from around the world as well as thousands of visitors. 
The event is preceded by the Chieftain’s Parade through the town centre led by the British Legion Pipe Band.  This celebrated annual event is only possible thanks to the helpers, competitors and members of the community who, over the years, have supported the event in a number of ways.  Tain Community Council hosts a tent for visitors providing food and drink and entertainment.  Tain Scouts are the main group who put together the tents and camp out in the field the night before to ensure that everything is secure and in place.


British Pipe Band Championships

On 30th July 2005 Tain hosted the British Pipe Band Championships.  112 pipe bands from all over Britain, Ireland and the USA took part in this prestigious event.  Tain Gala Association organised a whole weekend of entertainment for visitors to the area and over 15,000 people attended the actual Championships on the Saturday.  

City of Dunedin Pipe Band, USA
City of Dunedin Pipe Band, USA

A hugely popular event was the Taste of Tain marquee tent which hosted cookery demonstrations by local chefs, music from Tain's own band, Gizzen Briggs and stalls held by local businessess and crafts people demonstrating the wealth of produce available in and around Tain.                   

Community awards and jubilee celebrations

Tain celebrated the Queen’s Golden Jubilee by holding a huge all day street party, attended by over 4,000 people.  As part of the celebrations the Community Council also decided to celebrate the contribution of the town’s many volunteers by organising a Tain Civic Award ceremony.  Nominations for the awards were made by members of the community and from the many nominations received, 5 awards were made.  Each winner was presented, at the street party, with a ceremonial plaque and certificate. 


Town Centre CCTV

The introduction of town centre CCTV was voted a top priority by the community in the community postal survey.  As with most towns in Scotland crime has risen and there was a notable fear of crime among the older members of the community.  It was felt that the introduction of CCTV would act as a deterrent and provide a sense of security for many community members.  Tain Community Council was successful in a national competition bid to receive 50% funding towards a community CCTV system.  The remaining balance of funding was raised by the community.  The system was installed in 2002 and has proved to be a highly effective tool.  The Police report to the Community Council every month on all crime figures and the use of the CCTV system.  In 2003 the Community Council were successful in raising funding to employ a part-time civilian CCTV operator. In 2005 Tain has added to the system by installing 2 new cameras at Tain railway station which also provides coverage of Tain Links and the various leisure facilities located there.

Community facilities

Noticeboard – identified by the community as a priority the town centre noticeboard and town map was purchased by the Community Council in 2002/03.

Market Awning – Tain hosts street sales and markets most Thursdays and Fridays.  This has become a feature of the town and is an important fund raiser for the voluntary groups and organisations.  However on many occasions these markets and the goods for sale were ruined due to adverse weather.  The Community Council organised and funded a retractable canopy awning on the High Street which all groups use to provide shelter to enable them to hold their markets/sales throughout the year.  This has proved a hugely successful and popular introduction to the town’s facilities.

Tain Community Complex – this facility, run by a voluntary management committee, includes a swimming pool, 2 gyms and multi-function hall.  Swimming lessons are popular with the surrounding area and are available for all ages (Tain Terrapins, Tain Tadpoles and Tain Turtles as well as adult and women only lessons).

Health Room – this is a new venture, using a room available in the school.  The facility provides health education classes including parenting, special needs and cooking for community members.

Scouts Hut, Guide Hut, Cadet Hut – excellent facilities run by volunteers.

Links Facilities – including wildlife pond, children’s playpark, football pitches and clubhouse, Skate Park, golf course and various signed walks.

Tain Through Visitor Centre – which includes a town museum, visitor centre and the historic collegiate church.  This facility is run entirely by volunteers who also provide a tourist information centre point within the grounds.  The Museum Trust committee have also recently launched a website which includes archive material and displays of the museum articles which is of particular use to the elderly and housebound within the community.
Tain Collegiate Church
Tain Collegiate Church

Community news

Tain has its own monthly magazine the Tain & Dornoch Picture Post.  All members of the community regularly contribute stories, articles and information to this publication and it is sent throughout the world to regular subscribers.  It also includes the minutes of the monthly Community Council meetings.

Minutes of the Community Council meetings are also available to the community through the Tain community website and also in the local library.

The Tain Morangie Garden Centre publishes a community gardening magazine.

The community, including the Community Council, also regularly submits articles to the local press: the Ross-shire Journal, North Star and Press and Journal.

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