Green Hive Seaman's Hall

Green Hive

Supporting, protecting and developing the community and environment in Nairn.

Green Hive's story

Community-led development

Green Hive was launched as a social enterprise in 2015 by a few local volunteers with a small grant from the Highland Council. Today it is a thriving charitable enterprise which exemplifies the benefits of a community driven approach to environmental and social change.

It's led by a board of eight trustees representing around 100 members. It employs seven people, with three new posts recently in place.  

The team's philosophy is simple yet powerful – ‘happier people and happier places in Nairnshire'. Green Hive delivers a wide range of projects which at their core champion citizenship, community development, environmental protection and improvement. They support equal access to all, opening new opportunities to anyone disadvantaged by age, ill-health, disability, financial hardship or similar.

Find out more about Green Hive's work in our short film.

Community impacts

About Green Hive in 2023

Published on 05/01/2024


Green Hive volunteers


environmental improvement events


hours of volunteer work

David at the Trust's Bothy


Green Hive delivers a broad range of activities. Their community owned and managed assets make a lot of this possible:

  • a successful community buy out is breathing new life into Nairn Seaman's Victoria Hall. 
  • their workshop at Balmakeith is at the heart of a thriving enterprise operation.
  • the Viewfield Community Orchard is managed by volunteers and provides a public space to learn about food production. 

Their projects include:

  • electric bicycle hire and cargobike;
  • fashion shows showcasing slow fashion; 
  • Bumblebags sewing group - taking unwanted fabric and creating reusable shopping bags;
  • Litter picks - regularly at Nairn beach and riverside;
  • Stuff Swap Parties - to share unwanted clothes and household items;
  • Art is Rubbish’ workshops - turning rubbish in to works of art


True to our founding aims, we’ve been working to enhance well-being and the local environment, promote regeneration and civic pride, and boost local employment and skills.
Simon Noble, co-founder and chair, Green Hive

Read More

Beth with her dissertation

The Workshop

At HIE we're delighted to have supported the growing success of the Green Hive Enterprise Workshop. Here end-of-life plastics and other recyclable materials are re-used and transformed into unique, functional products built to last. Everything from clocks, coasters, craft tiles, bird boxes, right up to bespoke outdoor furniture is hand-finished by project staff and volunteers.

We've helped by providing capital funding for a plastics hot press machine. This ground-breaking kit, the size and scale of which makes it one of a kind in the Highlands, allows Green Hive to significantly upscale workshop operations, enabling the creation of recycled plastic sheets for diverse uses.

The expansion promises increased variety in recycled plastic items, a reduction in waste sent to landfills, and a new wave of volunteer opportunities.

photo - Workshop enterprise and project officers Andrew and Andy.  

Neil And Mathew Green Hive

Creating new job opportunities

Green Hive has entered a new stage in its development. Three new posts have been introduced to support its growth, and broaden its services.

Outgoing operating officer Neil Mapes has handed over to the organisation's new chief executive Matthew Withey. The Highland Council is supporting an enterprise assistant post at the workshop, and the Rank Foundation's Time to Shine project is supporting a post which will provide a blend of creative textile skills and wellbeing projects.

The organisation has also secured a Postcode Innovation Trust award and loan to support business planning.

Upcoming Green Hive plans include growing income through its assets at Seaman's Hall and its workshop products, an invasive species project to tackle giant hogweed in local waterways, and more textile workshops and events.

photo: Neil Mapes hands over to Matthew Withey at Seaman's Hall.

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