We're delighted to have been awarded Stage 1 Funding from the Scottish Land Fund. This development funding has enabled us to hire a consultant to produce a feasibility study and business plan and will also pay for a formal valuation of the woodland by a qualified district valuer. We selected our consultant, Duncan Bryden, through a competitive tender process.
The aim of the feasibility study is to assess options for the woodland to deliver real social, economic and environmental benefits for Glenan Wood and the surrounding community. A key part of this study will look at how the wood might be managed on a self-sustaining basis in the long term. The business plan will set out business goals and strategies towards sustainability, including financial projections across five years. The reports will form the basis of our final proposal to acquire the land under the CATS (community asset transfer) scheme.
The CATS scheme allows any community group in Scotland to purchase publicly owned land or property if it can make a positive case that the asset will be used to benefit local people. Most of the capital for such acquisitions is provided by the Scottish Land Fund, which provides grants to help communities to become more resilient and sustainable through the ownership and management of land and land assets.
As a community we see enormous benefit in acquiring Glenan Wood and managing it as an unspoilt, natural asset for this and future generations to enjoy. The wood is home to a vast array of plant and animal life and it also contains some archaeological remains, notably the deserted village of Glenan. Initially we’d be looking to improve path access around the wood and also helping people to interpret what they see through signage. Beyond that it will be up to the community to decide what type of projects we might want to undertake.