03 December 2021



A message from Jim Savege, chief executive of Aberdeenshire Council

This has been a massively tough week for families and communities across Aberdeenshire. We have witnessed a truly amazing effort of support from communities, energy providers, partners, council teams and emergency services to make sure we keep people safe as the power comes back on across the region.

I applaud the 800+ SSEN engineers who have battled through really difficult conditions and terrain to get us back on the grid and I know our communities appreciate those continuing efforts.

At the heart of our decision-making is a group called the Local Resilience Partnership – that group is made up of police, councils, health, fire and rescue, power companies, met office and SEPA, the ambulance service, the Red Cross… the list goes on. We have met multiple times a day to share updates and awareness, provide mutual aid and support the people of Aberdeenshire in partnership. 

This is a painful time for those still without power, but until such time as that power is switched back on, the Partnership will be here to support residents alongside their very resilient communities.

From the council perspective we have had 1,000s of staff being redeployed on the ground since last Friday – and in many cases volunteering – to ensure our communities are safe, that they have food, water, heat and other resources they need.

That action, together with the wonderful community support, has been phenomenal and they have achieved great things to support those affected.

We are concerned that we will have people who are still without power this weekend, so we are all continuing to increase our resources within those impacted communities so we can provide them with welfare facilities and as much support as we can.

Jim Savege


• Once again we wish to take this opportunity to thank all the wonderful examples of community assistance which continue to be evident across Aberdeenshire – whether it be supplies of hot food and drinks, checking on elderly residents and neighbours or helping to deliver supplies

• During our visits to affected households – where we do not get an answer - we are posting leaflets providing details of local welfare centre facilities where they can access hot food and drinks, showers and assistance

• However, we would encourage those residents who may have relocated from their home to alternative accommodation to call our assistance line on 0808 1963 384 and check in with the staff on your needs, so we can confirm you are safe and well

• And finally, while we continue this vital work in our communities, we would ask that you go back and check on anyone you know of who may be vulnerable and in need of assistance. You can also call us on their behalf if you find they need any support

Service Points/Helpline

• HAC (assistance centre) Storm Arwen - telephone 0808 1963 384 – will operate from 10am to 3pm during the weekend to provide assistance/signposting to residents

• Aberdeenshire Council Service Points continue to provide that assistance to communities

Welfare centres and community facilities

Banff and Buchan
Crudie School up until 10pm Catering Van (Fri only)
Whitehills, The Galley 12noon-4pm (Sat); 4p-6.30pm (Sun) No booking required
Banff Fife Lodge Hotel 12noon-2pm (Sat), 12noon-2pm & 5-8pm (Sun) No booking required
Macduff Knowes Hotel 12noon-8pm (Sat & Sun) Booking required
Lay By Banff Springs 9am-3pm Food Van SSEN One Pot shop
Deveron Centre Banff 9am-2pm (Sat & Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Fraserburgh Sports & Community Centre 9am-4pm (Sat & Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging

Crimond Medical/Community Hub 10am-1pm (Sat) Hot drinks, hot food, heat and charging facilities
Maud Resource Centre 10am-2.30pm (Sat) Hot drinks, hot food, heat, charging facilities
Peterhead Community Centre 8am-4pm (Sat); 10am-4pm (Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging

Balmedie Leisure Centre 9am-4pm (Sat & Sun if required) Hot food, tea/coffee and showers
Ellon Community Campus 8.30am-5pm (Sat); 9am-5pm (Sun) Showers for residents, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Methlick 11am-6pm Catering Van
Turriff Pool 9am-4pm (Sat & Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Turriff, Haughs 8am-10pm Catering Van

GariochEcht Hall (community run) 9am-11pm Hot Water, Charging facilities, water, hot food from 5pm
Inverurie Community Campus 8am-5.30pm (Sat & Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Westhill Pool 7.30am-5.15pm (Sat); 10am-4pm (Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Sauchen/Cluny opposite village notice board and bus stop 8am-10pm Catering Van

Kincardine & Mearns Castleton Farm Shop 4.3opm-5.30pm Hot food, hot drinks and charging facilities
Portlethen Pool 8am-4pm (Sat); 9am-5pm (Sun ) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Stonehaven Leisure Centre 9am-4pm (Sat); 9am-5pm (Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Mearns Community Campus 10am-2pm (Sat) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging

Aboyne Community Centre 9am-3.30pm (Sat & Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Alford Community Campus  9am-3pm (Sat); 8am-4.30pm (Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Banchory Sports Village 7.45am-3pm (Sat); 9am-5pm (Sun) Showers for residents without power, no charge, WiFi and mobile/device charging
Lumphanan Village Hall 8am-10pm Catering Van
Bellabeg, Strathdon lay-by across from shop 8am-10pm Catering Van
Aboyne Car Park by the Green 8am-10pm Catering Van
Alford Transport Museum Car Park 8am-10pm Catering Van
Tarland (in the Square) 8am-10pm Catering Van
Torphins (in the Square) 8am-10pm Catering Van
Bogniebrae, Bognie Arms Car Park 8am-10pm Catering Van

Scottish Welfare Fund

• Available to provide financial support to people who are facing a crisis or need help to live in the community. It can be a crisis grant in the form of a cash voucher to help a family or individual in an emergency or it can be a community care grant, which usually takes the form of goods to help someone to support someone to continue to live in the community.

• You can get more information or apply online by visiting https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/benefits-and-grants/welfare-reform/scottish-welfare-fund/

Education and Children’s Services
• Work progresses on getting more of our schools opened for pupils – for the latest new on your school visit https://online.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/Apps/schools-closures/

• Please remember that as well as the aftermath of the storm and the impact that has had on many communities including school staff, our schools are also continuing to work within national guidance relating to Covid-19 and are facing the same staffing pressures across many industries at the moment. Teams continue to go the extra mile and are doing their best to deliver on behalf of children and young people and communities. Our ask is - please, be kind. Ongoing mitigations may mean schools can't do all of the things you may like them to during December, and pressures on staff may mean you have to wait a bit longer than usual for an answer to a query. 

• Children's services social work teams are also open and available: https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/children-and-families/children-and-families-team-offices/

• Those who are entitled to statutory free school meals will receive an additional payment this week to make up for the two days missed in school, plus more if your school is closed for longer

• If you are back online following Storm Arwen and you know children and young people who are finding things tough right now please let them know about free mental health support services Kooth aberdeenshire@kooth.com and Togetherall https://togetherall.com/en-gb/is

Live Life Aberdeenshire

• All LLA facilities are open as normal
• Hot showers are still available at leisure facilities for residents who still need them - no charge! - and you can still access WiFi and mobile phone/device charging.


• Around 500 properties still off grid and SSEN expect to make further progress over weekend to restore power to more areas of Aberdeenshire

• As a reminder, if any customer is without power and is unable to make alternative arrangements to stay with family or a friend, SSEN will reimburse all reasonable costs for alternative accommodation and meals

• Details http://news.ssen.co.uk/news/all-articles/2021/november/storm-arwen-red-alert/

Environment and Sustainability Services

• A2B and Ready2Go operating as normal
• School transport continues to operate to all schools that are open
• Social Care transport operating as required
• Bus Stop/Shelter infrastructure still progressing dealing with aftermath of the damage caused by Storm Arwen

Household waste collections

• All routine collection carried out today - efforts will be made to return to the rural areas which were missed yesterday but this will be dependent on the weather as some of the roads are still icy in part, therefore it could be next week before the routes are carried out

• Further to our messaging around the disposal of defrosted food, the decision has been taken to provide additional trips to our household recycling centres for those with vans/trailers if they have used up their 24-visit limit

• You will still have to either call the contact centre on 03456 081208 or email wasteadminsupportinverurie@aberdeenshire.gov.uk directly with your request and we can add additional bookings on

• Residents are reminded that if they have quantities of spoiled food from fridges and freezers due to loss of power they should not place excess food waste bags next to the food caddy, as this will potentially attract vermin

• Extra food waste caddies can be collected free of charge from our recycling centres. We encourage householders to fill their food waste caddies – remember to remove ALL packaging - and hold back any additional food waste for the next week as food caddies are uplifted on both general waste and recycling weeks. If this is not possible, you can put the additional waste in your general waste bin

Community testing programme

• We continue working with NHS Grampian to make Community Lateral Flow Testing available for people without COVID symptoms on a voluntary, no appointment, basis across Aberdeenshire

• We are offering more Collect Only locations next week and would appreciate it if you could help us inform our residents of the closest site to them, by using your social media presence

• If you would like our team to visit your community, get in contact with peterheadcommunitytesting@aberdeenshire.gov.uk 

• Next week’s schedule is attached and also available online at https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/covid-19/community-testing


• Conditions last night and this morning as forecast, 32 routes out at 3pm yesterday and 5.40am today

• No significant weather expected during the weekend, but we will be treating primary routes from 3pm today and again from 5.40am tomorrow (Sat)

• Snow gates all open as is the A957 Slug Road between Stonehaven and Crathes

• Currently 14 roads currently closed incl. A97 Kildrummy, B972 Pass of Ballater, B977 Hirn – Garlogie, B9024 Mains of Toll - some still closed awaiting SSEN overhead powerlines work or BT

• You can get all the latest updates on gritting treatment along with an array of other council information by downloading the myaberdeenshire app at https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/my/mobile-app/