Scottish Land Fund awards £1.2 million

The Castle Toward estate in Argyll. Copyright Alain Bety

An enterprising Argyll community has received £750,000 from the Scottish Land Fund to purchase an historic 15th Century estate. It is one of five rural communities sharing in funding worth £1.2 million.

South Cowal Community Development Company in Argyll plan to purchase the Castle Toward 143 acre estate to preserve the buildings and create new jobs for local people. This includes the Grade B Listed Baronial Mansion House, which will be leased and developed by a national outdoor education company and the Gate House buildings, which the community plan to develop for a range of activities including a tea-room, bunk-house, self-catering units and retail workshops.

Welcoming the award, South Cowal Community Development Company Chairman Alan Stewart, said: “This kind of news doesn’t happen very often and it will certainly lift spirits here in South Cowal. The local community have been behind the community buyout 100% over the past six months, attending open days, local meetings, fundraising events and even a record turnout for community ballot on the estate’s future. This level of funding now means we can proceed in our continuing negotiations to purchase this estate for the community.”

The Scottish Land Fund is funded by the Scottish Government and administered by the Big Lottery Fund in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise.

Details of all five awards can be found in this Scottish Land Fund news release.

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