Stage 2 Application Successful – £2.73million secured!

The Heritage Lottery Fund has formally awarded over £2.73million to the delivery phase of Galloway Glens Scheme – a cause of much jubilation for everyone involved. This means that the work proposed can get underway in 2018, running for 5 years, and this grant will go towards the range of projects outlined in our stage 2 Application (see ‘projects’ tab for details).

The Chairman of the Galloway Glens Partnership Board, Sir Alex Fergusson, said:

“This is the news that we have all been waiting for and is the culmination of a great deal of hard work and effort by many people over the last 18 months. My thanks go to McNabb Laurie who has headed up this project from day one, and to Karen Morley and Simon Fieldhouse from Dumfries and Galloway Council, which has itself provided great support from the outset. I would also thank the many volunteers who have given so much of their time to the Partnership Board and the working groups. It is entirely due to their scrutiny, guidance and encouragement that the project has been so enthusiastically received by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

This Scheme will provide funding to a range of projects that will highlight and connect people to their local heritage, but we will all be working for it to be even more than that – aiming to support the local economy and tackling bigger challenges such as ageing demographics, public health and really putting the area ‘on the map’. The Partnership Board will be pushing staff to get the maximum boost for the local area – including spending as much as possible of the grant with Dumfries and Galloway suppliers and working with a range of partners to make sure the scheme provides the strongest long term benefits.

As soon as possible in the New Year, we will be opening an office and hiring staff – please keep an eye out for job adverts if you might be interested in joining us, follow us on Social Media for updates. A couple of projects will be able to get underway pretty quickly including access improvements around Corserine in the Galloway Hills, the Historic Mapping project and support for some of our best loved species such as Red Squirrels and Black Grouse. For full details of projects, see our website.

Many thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund for their support. Work will begin in earnest in 2018, but what a wonderful Christmas present this is for everyone from Carsphairn to Kirkcudbright!”

The Galloway Glens Development Officer, McNabb Laurie, said:

“The principle of a ‘Landscape Partnership’ scheme is that you support a range of projects to result in a benefit being felt across the area, on a ‘landscape’ scale. We aim to use the local heritage to drive economic activity and support sustainable communities and have about 25 projects in the headline scheme. This will be an evolving feast so please do get in touch if any opportunities present themselves. Some of our projects are now fully funded and ready to start while for others, our focus is now on securing any shortfall.

Separate to the headline projects, the Partnership Board have also earmarked £100,000 of this award towards a Small Grants Scheme to support local smaller projects.

Thanks to everyone for their input so far. It has been a very busy year and it is great to see our plans received so positively by HLF. That’s the development done, and if we can deliver what is hoped then this should be very exciting…”

Commenting on the importance of grant award, Lucy Casot, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland said:

“Our species and habitats are under constant threat yet they make a massive contribution to our economy. The enormous pressures upon them mean that we have to approach landscape restoration and conservation on a bigger scale than ever before. Massive community consultation has shown that the people of Galloway are keen to make a difference to the wonderful natural asset they have on their doorstep. HLF is delighted to help them achieve that goal, bringing real cohesion to the natural and built heritage of Galloway Glens.”

Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy, Environment and Infrastructure Committee, Councillor Archie Dryburgh, said:

“The Galloway Glens Scheme will use the natural and cultural assets of the Ken/Dee valley, some of which are either poorly understood or hidden from view completely, to highlight the area’s significance through history and better understand the local landscape today. All of this will support the local economy and encourage genuinely sustainable communities. Our Council is proud to be a partner of this scheme – congratulations to all involved and I look forward to seeing things get underway.”

Dumfries and Galloway Council’s representative on the Galloway Glens Partnership Board, Councillor John Young, said:

“The Galloway Glens Scheme is a great example of the unique cultural and natural heritage of the region driving investment and supporting economic activity. I have enjoyed acting as the Council’s representative on the Partnership board, and applaud the Scheme’s energy and ambition. We all know how special the area is – this work will capitalise on this and leave a positive legacy for years to come.”

Photo: The Galloway Glens Partnership Board at their August 2017 Board meeting with the Stage 2 Submission documents. Photo credit: McNabb Laurie