Ten groups share Scottish Land Fund funding

Rousay landscape
Norette Ferns

Groups across the country have been awarded a share of £1,646,972 in the latest round of funding from the Scottish Land Fund.

The Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre Development Trust (REWDT) receives £260,000 from the Scottish Land Fund to purchase the Trumland Estate on Rousay, taking 15 percent of the island into community hands. They have plans to purchase 1,710 acres to secure the site of their community-owned wind turbine, improve facilities for residents and visitors and to create new jobs.

The estate, which features archaeological remains including chambered cairns and a crannog, is a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Community ownership will create part-time employment opportunities for a Project Officer and a Ranger as well as allowing the trust to explore improvements to broadband and mobile connectivity.

John Garson, Chair of Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre Development Trust said:

"The REWDT board and staff are thrilled to hear this good news, now we can press ahead with our plans to make this project into a real community asset. The project will help promote Rousay as an attractive place to live and provide two employment opportunities. The follow on stages of this project will also have significant environmental advantages, will encourage and make it easier for locals and tourists to visit the area, provide well needed additional public toilets and have the possibility of aiding digital connectivity across our islands. We can't wait to get started.”

Minister, Cabinet Secretary for Land Reform Roseanna Cunningham said of today’s grants:

"This is great news for the residents of Rousay, and the other successful projects, which are fine examples of land and assets coming into community ownership, allowing local people to get the maximum benefit from them. I know that today’s funding marks a major milestone for them, and will make a real difference in helping those successful community groups to realise their ambitions - enabling communities to press ahead with their ideas, which will be of major benefit to these areas for many years to come."

Other projects receiving Scottish Land Fund cash today are: 
Glenfarg Community Centre | Award - £229,140
This group will acquire a former schoolhouse adjacent to the existing Glenfarg Village Hall in Perthshire to create meeting rooms and a cafe in order to reduce social isolation and accommodate a variety of community services and events.

Castle Loch Lochmaben Community Trust | Award- £54,000 The award will allow this group to purchase 21 acres of woodland adjoining the grounds of the community-owned Castle Loch in Lochmaben, near Dumfries, to improve access to the loch and create new volunteering opportunities in woodland restoration and management.

Sandwick Social & Economic Development | Award - £38,032 With their grant this group will purchase a piece of land opposite Hoswick Visitor Centre in Shetland in order to create additional car parking and cycle space and to install an electrical vehicle charging point as well as adding outdoor seating and an interpretation area.

New Luce Community Trust NEW LUCE | Award - £178,000 Money from the Scottish Land Fund will allow this group to purchase the Kenmuir Arms Hotel in New Luce, Dumfries & Galloway, in order to create a multi-purpose community space with shop, post office, tearoom, restaurant and accommodation for cyclists and walkers on the Southern Upland Way.

Papay Development Trust | Award - £187,000
Papay Development Trust will purchase a four-bed detached house on the Isle of Papa Westray in the Orkney Isles to help meet the urgent need for long-stay, affordable family homes for rent.

The Pyramid at Anderston | Award - £324,000 The group will purchase the ‘B’ listed Anderston Kelvingrove Parish Church in Glasgow in order to refurbish and reconfigure it to maximise use of the building by community groups, immigrant groups and foreign language churches.

Westray Development Trust | Award - £147,600 With cash from the Scottish Land Fund, Westray Development Trust will purchase the former Harbour Master’s house in the village of Pierowall in Westray in the Orkney Isles and transform it into four apartments for affordable rent in order to meet the acute shortage of accommodation on the island.

Wigtown & Bladnoch Community Initiative | Award - £130,000
This group will purchase the former Bank of Scotland building in Wigtown, Dumfries & Galloway, and develop it as two affordable homes and a bunkhouse for visitors. It will also provide new employment, training and volunteering opportunities for local people.

Tarves Development Trust | Award - £99,200 TDT will take over ownership of Tarves Community Hub, which this group has already converted into a community cafe, office space and meeting venue. Owing the Hub will allow the group to provide further community support.

Visit the Big Lottery Fund website for more information.

The Scottish Land Fund is keen to support more applications from across Scotland and particularly within urban areas. Groups considering applying should contact the Big Lottery Fund to discuss their idea at advicescotland@biglotteryfund.org.uk or by phoning 0300 123 7110.