The new unit will provide a laundry service for NHS hospitals throughout the Highlands. It is equipped with £880 000 (USD1.3m) worth of equipment, employs 26 staff and is expected to process up to 3million articles a year.

Previously the majority of washing was handled by the former Craig Dunain psychiatric hospital in Inverness.

Alastair Wilson, the trust’s head of facilities said “We have moved from a workhouse type of laundry where work was done manually to a new laundry where as much work as possible has been automated.”