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Progress for Landscape Partnership plans

13th May 2015

Rural regeneration is the aim of the Tomintoul and Glenlivet Landscape Partnership and to help with that, a new development officer has been recruited.

Marion McDonald recently took up this new and challenging role, which aims to use the distinct heritage of this corner of the Cairngorms National Park to promote regeneration through celebrating that heritage, enhancing the landscape and promoting skills and development opportunities in the long term.

Marion said: “I am delighted to be working on the Landscape Partnership project. I started my working life in the Cairngorms at Loch Garten some 20 years ago so it’s great to be back. I have a wealth of experience in environmental and community projects and have worked a lot with volunteers and community groups and I appreciate the challenges and the opportunities that lie ahead for everyone who is involved.”

The Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA), on behalf of partners working with the Tomintoul and Glenlivet Development Trust (TGDT) has received earmarked funding of over £2.5million including a development grant of £171,600 from the Heritage Lottery Fund through its Landscape Partnership programme. This funding alongside £50,000 from the CNPA, £40,000 from the Crown Estate, £50,000 from Highland and Islands Enterprise – along with voluntary input from the local community and other organisations – means that during the development phase detailed proposals can be worked up for a wide range of projects that could eventually see a total investment of £3.6m.

Marion’s job will be to lead on the development phase working up those detailed plans for a range of projects such as improvements to the museum and visitor centre in Tomintoul; oral history gathering; conservation of important buildings such as Scalan and Blairfindy Castle; restoration of woodlands along the River Avon; improved paths and increasing wetland habitat for wading birds. With many of these projects providing training opportunities for people to learn new skills.

Eleanor Mackintosh, CNPA board member commented: “Tomintoul and Glenlivet has a distinct heritage with many colourful stories from the past, the project will use this rich heritage to promote rural regeneration and encourage more visitors to experience this distinctive and vibrant part of the National Park. We are delighted to have Marion on board to help us achieve that vision.”

There will be an open evening on the Wednesday 27th May at the Glenlivet Hall, 4-8pm where people can find out more about the Landscape Partnership and the Development Trust projects.