Crown Estate Scotland’s Sustainable Communities Fund, which started in 2020, has already delivered around £620,000 in valuable support to people across the country. It consists of two grant programmes:
- Community Capacity Grants - open to all communities within five miles of Scotland’s coastline, or one of Crown Estate Scotland’s four rural estates. Early-stage financial support is available for community projects that will contribute to local regeneration and sustainable development. Grants will range between £20,000 and £50,000, with a total of £250,000 being made available in this year of the programme.
- Environment Grants - available to Crown Estate Scotland tenants, providing grants of between £5,000 and £20,000 for projects which can deliver demonstrable environmental benefits within 18 months of an award being made. A total of £100,000 is available this year
A wide range of projects and initiatives have benefitted from the Sustainable Communities Fund in recent years. These include:
- Edinbane Community Company, Skye. The grant will help develop a vision to re-open the vacant village shop. The plan is to transform the site into a community-run facility, with a range of services including food shop, toilets, and campervan waste disposal.
- Scourie Community Development Company, Sutherland. A feasibility study is investigating the opportunities for seaweed farming and processing. This could help support jobs in an area that suffers from depopulation and lack of employment opportunities.
- Craignish Mooring Association, Argyll. Community-led seagrass planting across 1,000sqm will help ‘seawilding’ efforts, and support a wide range of organisms.
- Dalbeattie Angling Association, Dumfries & Galloway. Removal of giant hogweed along the Urr Water.
In this short video, we see how Dalbeattie Angling Association is working on behalf of the wider Galloway community to protect the River Urr from invasive non-native species.
Annie Breaden, Head of Policy for Crown Estate Scotland, said: “The level of interest from communities across Scotland in the Sustainable Communities Fund has been fantastic. We’re really pleased to be supporting such a diverse array of projects including initiatives that are making a practical difference to people now as well as longer-term developments.
“Applying to the Fund is easy, and the grants available can provide the financial backing to turn aspirations and great ideas into reality.”
Full details on the application process and how grants will be allocated can be found here.
The deadline for Expressions of Interest for the Community Capacity Grants Programme, which is administered by Foundation Scotland, is Monday 19 September.
The deadline for the Environment Grants Programme, which is administered by Crown Estate Scotland, is Friday 14 October.