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Figures show National Park attracts millions in funds for vital projects

29th March 2019

The Cairngorms National Park Authority, on the back of continued Scottish Government support, has invested significantly in the assets of the area over the last five years. The funding from Scottish Government has allowed the CNPA, working with partners, to bring in around £14 million of additional funding over the last five years to help deliver projects covering outdoor access, nature conservation, health, tourism infrastructure and developing our local communities.

The figures are being discussed today (Friday 29th March) at the CNPA’s board meeting in Blair Atholl, where the organisation is agreeing the priorities for the coming year.

Chief Executive Grant Moir explained: “The CNPA has been very successful at working with partners to bring in extra funding to the Cairngorms National Park. There are many projects being delivered that are helping regenerate rural communities, to improve tourism infrastructure and ensure the conservation of our wildlife and landscapes.

“The CNPA is the lead body in three National Lottery Heritage Fund projects in the Park and a partner in another. The CNPA has secured Sustrans funding for the Speyside way extension and is in line to receive Rural Tourism Infrastructure Funds for projects at Glenmore and Dinnet. We’re also the accountable body for the successful LEADER community development programme in the Park. The Cairngorms National Park Partnership Plan provides the framework for all this work and our role is to ensure that it is delivered.

“Our careful use of funding from Scottish Government has allowed us to secure valuable additional investment coming into the Cairngorms from external sources by us offering some resource from the Authority to secure sizeable offers from elsewhere to support priority projects in the National Park.”

The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarded the Tomintoul and Glenlivet Landscape Partnership £2.34 million and it is delivering across all sections of the National Park Partnership Plan from the redevelopment of the Tomintoul Museum into a Discovery Centre and tourist hub, to woodland restoration, improved wetland habitats for wading birds as well as local path improvements and an oral history project.

The CNPA was also extremely successful in securing funds via Peatland Action totalling £2.1 million. 19 projects (on 11 estates) resulted in 1,300ha of peatland restoration which equates to 19,363 tonnes CO2 equivalent emissions savings per year – or 73 million miles by car!

LEADER funding in the region of £3 million has been distributed to a variety of community led projects during this time allowing community groups to develop and deliver priority actions for their own communities, while also supporting economic development and farm diversification.  Funding brought by these applicants means that the total project investment through LEADER is around £5 million in community led development projects.

With Sustrans funding having been secured for the final section of the Speyside Way, which will be completed in Autumn, this adds to the range of access investment being undertake through the National Lottery Heritage funded Mountains and the People project.

Convener of the CNPA Xander McDade said: “The CNPA is very good at drawing in extra funds to ensure that the long term vision set out in the National Park Partnership Plan is delivered. I am proud that by significantly enhancing our investment in the Cairngorms National Park in this way we benefit residents and visitors to the Cairngorms, while also making large scale contributions to Scotland’s national outcomes such as those on resilient communities, protecting and enhancing our environment and a more sustainable economy. We will continue to seek investment across our aims in this outstanding National Park.”

You can read the CNPA board papers here or to find out more about the Cairngorms National Park Partnership Plan click here.