June Cascade

Campbeltown by Claire Tromans

In this issue:

  • Congratulations to all our AB Recognition nominees
  • Did you know?
  • Top tips for children starting school in August
  • World-famous Clipper Race coming to Oban
  • A reading challenge for summer 
  • Free bus travel for under 22’s
  • Spare an hour to change a life 
  • Learning awards coming soon

Recognising your hard work

AB Recognition logo

Thanks to everyone who has nominated colleagues for doing a great job. AB Recognition is our new approach to employee recognition. During April and May you nominated individuals and teams who received recognition from senior management for the fantastic contribution they are making. You can see a full list below. 

AB Recognition launches externally this month, which will mean that the public can also nominate employees and teams for providing excellent customer service.  Look out for more information and how you can help to promote it.

If you would like to nominate a colleague or team, simply complete our online form.  


Congratulations to the following colleagues and teams


  • Brenda Nicholson, Clerical Assistant, Roads and Infrastructure Services
  • Christian Campbell, Mechanic, Fleet Waste and Transport
  • Eileen Mackinnon, Childcare and Education Worker, Tayvallich Primary School
  • Elsa Simoes, Infrastructure Design Manager, Infrastructure Design
  • Grace Hamilton, Clerical Assistant, Rosneath Primary School
  • Heather Thomson, Admin Assistant, HROD 
  • Jacqueline Middleton, Environmental Health Manager, Regulatory Services and Building Standards
  • Jacquie Downie, Employee Relations Officer HROD
  • John Lilley, Social Work Assistant, HSCP
  • Kyle Williamson, IT Engineer, ICT
  • Maggie Douglas, Social Work Team Manager, HSCP, Cowal Community Hospital NHS
  • Mairi Hargreaves, ASN Assistant, Tobermory High School
  • Karl Pittom, Teacher, Hermitage Academy


  • Marie-Louise Kane, Clerical Assistant, St Andrew’s Primary School, Rothesay
  • Mary McCallum, Senior Accountant, Financial Services
  • Matthew Green, Principal Teacher, Oban High School
  • Mhairi Lugue, Senior Clerical Assistant, Roads and Infrastructure Services
  • Nicola Fleck, Estates and Property Development Tech, Commercial Services
  • Romy Singleton, Clerical Assistant, John Logie Baird Primary School
  • Sandra McLindon, Accountant, Accounting and Budgeting
  • Sarah Martin, Lead Childcare and Education Worker, Dalintober Primary School
  • Shirley Johnstone, Change Manager, Commercial Services
  • Stuart Buchanan, Janitor/Caretaker, Rhu Primary School
  • Susan Mcauley, Clerical Assistant, Clyde Cottage Nursery, Dunoon
  • Tripti Samal, Clerical Assistant, Roads and Infrastructure Services


  • Communications Team
  • Housing Services Team
  • iTrent Project Team (HR and OD)
  • Kintyre Roads and Amenities Team
  • Oban Airport Team

Did you know?

The council provides a huge range of services. Look out for posts on social media to help our communities better understand how hard we’re all working to provide these vital services across Argyll and Bute. If you have any facts and figures from your service, we would love to share them. Please email workingtogether@argyll-bute.gov.uk

Top tips for children starting school in August

Linda Candlish, Depute Head Teacher, Colgrain Primary School
Linda Candlish, Depute Head Teacher, Colgrain Primary School, Helensburgh

As a parent myself, I know that when your child starts primary or secondary school, it’s a huge change for everyone. It’s a mix of nervous butterflies and excitement for both parents and children.

It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous and a bit scared. Don’t worry though, teachers are there to help children settle in.

My own child is joining S1 this year so I understand all the feelings you and your child may have. We found reassurance by taking advantage of all the transition opportunities provided by the secondary school.  You can also find lots of helpful tips on ParentClub and I’ve shared some of my own advice below to help parents and your children.

Starting primary school top tips – https://www.parentclub.scot/articles/starting-primary-school

Starting Secondary School – https://www.parentclub.scot/articles/starting-secondary-school

Good luck to everyone starting their new school.

Linda Candlish
Deputy Head Teacher
Colgrain Primary School

Starting primary school

  • Self-help skills (practise fastening buttons, zipping up jackets and changing shoes
  • Make sure your child has a water bottle each day
  • Go to school prepared for the weather – outdoor learning happens all year round.
  • If you know children that will be in your child’s class, make connections with the parents and arrange get-togethers over the summer holidays. Parents will become your friends too.
  • It’s an emotional time, sending your child to school for the first time, however children are very observant and feed off their parents’ emotions. Be positive, encouraging and excited for the opportunities they are going to have. Save the tissues for the car if you can!

Starting secondary school

  • Read the school handbook, get to know expectations and key contacts. You’ll find the handbook on the school’s website.
  • Prepare a quiet space in the house for your young person to complete homework, build this into their daily routine
  • Help your young person to take responsibility for their own belongings, encouraging them to pack their bag the night before school. You might consider a locker.
  • Don’t feel you can’t speak to the school. Working together leads to more positive outcomes for your young person.
  • Joining clubs is a good way to make friends across year groups and classes.
  • Be patient – your young person is about to experience a lot of change. There will be new friendships to navigate, new learning, new teachers and a slightly longer day!

World-famous Clipper Race coming to Oban

All hands are on deck as Oban gets ready to host the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race when it sails into town in two weeks – the first time the event has come to Scotland!

The council is a Host Port Partner and teams from across the council services have been working hard over the last few months to organise the event with external partners.

To coincide with the Clipper Race, a Festival of the Sea will also take place to celebrate Oban’s outstanding maritime history, Gaelic tradition, music, songs, and literature. Ocean health workshops will deliver a series of activities to highlight Oban’s natural environment, whilst a food and drinks village funded by EventScotland will demonstrate the high-quality local food and drink available.

To see what’s on for you and your family to enjoy during the festival, visit www.oban.org.uk/clipper-race/

A reading challenge for summer

Liveargyll is running a reading challenge over the summer holidays for all ages. Sign up at your local liveArgyll library and receive a reading challenge card. 

Read/listen to five books of your choice throughout the summer and complete your challenge card by 31 August to receive a goodie bag and certificate. 

  • Mini Challenge available for 0-4 years
  • Junior Challenge for 5 – 11 years
  • Adult Challenge for 12 – 100+ years
  • Family Challenge for those who want to sign up together

Free bus travel for under 22's

All young people in Scotland aged between 11 and 25 qualify for a Young Scot card. This entitles them to free bus travel on all registered bus services across Scotland. The cards also offer discounts including 10% off shopping from the Coop and 20% off food from Pizza Hut.

Apply for a Young Scot Card and find out more about discounts and rewards.


Spare an hour to change a life

Could you ShareAnHour with a young person and help them discover their talents and possibilities? Become a mentor in Dunoon Grammar, Oban High School, or Hermitage Academy (Helensburgh) with MCR Pathways.

Be inspired to make a difference in 2024. Learn about mentoring with MCR Pathways and help a young person in Dunoon, Helensburgh and Oban fulfil their true potential. 

Find out how you can make a difference https://mcrpathways.org/

Learning awards coming soon

Learning and skills

The annual Learning Awards ceremony for employees who have achieved a professional, academic or vocational qualification linked to their role will take place on 22 November 2024. 


The ceremony, at Kilmory recognises employees who have gained an accredited qualification supported by the council.


We will be recognising achievements such as degrees, SVQs, Argyll and Bute Manager and many more. Look out for more details.


Get in touch

Get in touch

If you would like to include an article in the next Cascade, we would love to hear from you. Get in touch via Cascade@argyll-bute.gov.uk