Our CONSERVATION AND THE ENVIRONMENT finalists for the 2017 Scottish Rural Awards are…
Communities Along The Carron
This grassroots volunteer community group were constituted in 2010 to regenerate the River Carron communities through education, community engagement and physical transformation. Since their beginning, the group has raised in excess of £1 million of funding which has helped to improve the quality of life of the 16 communities between Campsie Fells and the Firth of Forth.
Ogilvy spirits produce Scotland’s first potato vodka. Established in 2015 by fourth-generation farmers Graeme and Caroline Jarron, the vodka was developed after the decision was made to take the farms operations in a new direction. They now aim to harness the increased appetite for gin and focus this on vodka, as well as reaching the point where all rejected potatoes are used in the production of the spirit. The company is part of the Food Life group and aims to employ locals where possible.
Scottish Canals manages a varied property portfolio on behalf of the Scottish Government. Their primary focus is to enhance or create tourist and leisure destinations with opportunities for people to live, work and play on Scotland’s canals. The company’s projects include the restoration of a number of important heritage properties along the Caledonian Canal and working with the Fort Augustus community and Highland Council to develop the Fort Augustus Retail and Tourism Centre.
Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels
Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels is a project to stop the decline of Scotland’s core red squirrel populations. They work closely with local communities to improve conditions for the animal, manage the impact of the deadly squirrelpox virus and combat the spread of the non-native grey squirrel. This is the first nationally coordinated attempt to save Britain’s only native squirrel species.
Mull of Galloway Trust
The Mull of Galloway Trust was set up in February 2012 and successfully completed a buyout on 4 July 2013 by the community of Kirkmaiden in order to preserve the area for current and future generations. Today they offer self-catering cottages, lighthouse tours, exhibitions and cultural heritage events. These have helped safe-guard jobs in this rural area, ultimately benefiting the region’s infrastructure and economy through tourism.
Brighter Bridge Of Weir
Bridge of Weir, Renfrewshire
Brighter Bridge of Weir is an entirely voluntary group whose aim is to enhance their local community. After sourcing capital from Renfrewshire Council, the group began in spring 2011. Working in partnership with local residents, businesses, community groups, youth organisations and the local authority, they aim to identify areas around the village that have been neglected and are in need of improvement.
Nevis Environmental is a practical and innovative consultancy providing environmental management solutions to a range of clients, including ecological surveys, hydrology, water quality monitoring and habitat management. The company was initially set up 15 years ago as part of Wind Prospect before operating in their own right in 2013. Their customers range from large scale energy producers to small community-based organisations.
Cree Valley Community Woodlands Trust
Daltanie, Newton Stewart
Cree Valley Community Woodlands Trust conserves and provides access to broad leaved woodland in the Cree Valley in Galloway. Over the years they have branched out into a whole host of conservation related and community activities, including volunteering opportunities for able and less able people and archaeological and historical projects. They are an essential organisation in connecting people and communities with important woodland landscapes in Galloway.