The Inverness West ward covers 5.5 square miles (14 sq km) and lies on the western side of the City of Inverness. It comprises the residential areas of Scorguie, Kinmylies, Muirtown, Clachnaharry village, the Bught/Springfield/Ballifeary area, parts of Dalneigh and the city centre west of the River Ness, and rural areas on the Leachkin. It is represented on Highland Council by three councillors.
SOME WARD FACTS:
- It is mainly a suburban residential ward, with a large proportion of owner-occupied houses (69%). Craig Dunain and Craig Phadrig, The Leachkin, New Craigs Hospital, Kilvean Cemetery and Crematorium, Scottish Natural Heritage HQ at Great Glen House, the Caledonian Canal, Caley Cruisers, Torvean Golf Course, Inverness Leisure Centre, Whin Park, the Highland Archive Centre, Bught Park, Tomnahurich Cemetery, Highland Council HQ, Eden Court Theatre, Inverness Cathedral and the scenic Ness Islands all contribute to the ward’s place of importance within Inverness.
- Major employers located within the ward are New Craigs Hospital, Scottish Natural Heritage, Inverness Leisure Centre, Premier Inn Inverness West, Eden Court Theatre, Highland Council and Caley Cruisers.
- Approximately 2,500 people within the ward are in employment, 67% of them in public administration, education & health. Shops and hotels are the other main employment sources.
- The west of the city witnessed a major expansion in the 1970s and 1980s when the large housing estates of Scorguie and Kinmylies were built. After a long pause major house building is again under way with recent completions by Highland Housing Alliance for 94 units at Westercraigs following others beside New Craigs Hospital and Assynt Road.
- Transport is a key issue in this part of Inverness with reliance on the swing bridges over the Caledonian Canal making connections with the rest of Inverness unsatisfactory.
- Highland Council has recently completed the “West Link” road which crosses the Canal and River Ness near Torvean. A second canal swing bridge is planned for 2020.
- The A82 Fort William and A862 Beauly roads both go through Inverness West, resulting in all road access from Inverness to the west passing through the ward. It is the “western gateway of the city of Inverness”.
- Within the ward are two secondary schools (Charleston Academy and Inverness High School) and four primary schools (Kinmylies, Muirtown, Central and St Josephs). Some local children also attend Dalneigh Primary.
- The unemployment rate of 1.6% is below the Highland and Scottish averages. 45% of 16–74 year olds are employed full-time.
- The electorate in the ward at March 2018 was 8,223.