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Community groups benefit from SLF awards

Published: 04/04/2023

Sixteen community groups across Scotland are set to benefit from the latest round of Scottish Land Fund (SLF) approvals, announced this week, totalling £1.97m.

The SLF is funded by the Scottish Government and delivered in partnership by the National Lottery Community Fund and Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

The site of a former hydroponicum in Achiltibuie, where vegetables were once grown without use of soil, will now provide land for affordable housing and an amenity space following a grant of £304,700 to Coigach Community Development Company from the SLF.

Other groups to benefit include Dunoon Community Shed, which has been given £153,000 to acquire a former ceramics factory in Dunoon from where it will continue to offer multiple activities to the local community to build skills, reduce isolation and provide a community gathering space.

Sandra Holmes, head of community assets at HIE, said: “The successful projects announced today across Scotland are all great examples of people taking control of local resources for the long-term benefit of their communities. For example, the Coigach Community Development Company, through the purchase of the land at the former hydroponicum site, will now be in a position to build much-needed affordable community housing. The new homes are vitally important to create a sustainable future for the area.

“All these projects announced today will help retain the population, attract visitors and create jobs. Ownership will give the community groups greater control over important assets that will reap rewards for people now and for generations to come. We wish all the successful groups the very best in their new ventures.”

Richard Williams, Chair, Coigach Community Development Company, said: “We are delighted that our application to the Scottish Land Fund has been successful. This funding will prove a real game changer for Coigach, allowing us to now purchase what for the past 12 years has been a derelict piece of land in the centre of our village. 

“Once in community ownership we have ambitious plans to transform this site for the long-term benefit of Coigach – by constructing a range of housing types and tenures, realising a long-held goal and key aspiration for the community.”

John McGhie, Chairman, Dunoon Community Shed, said: “It is with real excitement that we are to become the owners of the industrial unit that we have called home for the last six years. Whilst we were renting half of the unit our membership has doubled to 120 and the number of activities we undertake has blossomed beyond our expectations, we need room to grow and the Scottish Land Fund are giving us the resources to do so.”

More about the SLF awards is available on the National Lottery Community Fund news page National Lottery Community Fund news page

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