Cash to put lost world on map

Mil­lions pledged for min­ing area project

Ayrshire Post - - INTIMATIONS - Stephen Hous­ton

A wind­fall of more than £ 2.5 mil­lion is to help rein­ject spirit into the old coal com­mu­ni­ties of East Ayr­shire.

The am­bi­tious project, which won fund­ing from the Her­itage Lot­tery, aims to use the land­scape and the peo­ple to cre­ate new op­por­tu­ni­ties for leisure and tourism.

The Land­scape Part­ner­ship cov­ers 96 square miles be­tween the River Lu­gar and River Doon, in­clud­ing 20 sites of spe­cial sci­en­tific in­ter­est ( SSSIs).

Po­ten­tial projects in­clude an in­ter­pre­ta­tion trail of the lost min­ing vil­lages, River Lu­gar restora­tion works and an arts project to cel­e­brate min­ing brass bands.

Scot­tish Nat­u­ral Her­itage also wants to ex­pand the Muirkirk Up­lands SSSI by tak­ing in ex­tra land at An­der­side Flow.

Lucy Ca­sot from the Her­itage Lot­tery Fund said: “The Land­scape Part­ner­ship pro­vides a unique frame­work with which to tackle large- scale en­vi­ron­men­tal degra­da­tion.

“East Ayr­shire is of­ten per­ceived as lack­ing in in­ter­est be­cause of its in­dus­trial char­ac­ter when in fact its nat­u­ral re­sources and me­an­der­ing rivers make it rich in both built and nat­u­ral her­itage.

“This part­ner­ship will help peo­ple re­con­nect with their nat­u­ral her­itage, strength­en­ing their sense of pride and in­spir­ing stew­ard­ship of the land around them.”

The area has blan­ket bog sites, hen har­ri­ers and short- eared owls.

Plans in­clude us­ing river rushes to cre­ate bri­quettes, new walk­ing and cy­cling paths and land­scape man­age­ment ap­pren­tice­ships.

East Ayr­shire Coun­cil leader Dou­glas Reid said: “This will al­low us to work up the de­tail of our am­bi­tious scheme.

“This wouldn’t have been pos­si­ble without the ef­forts of our won­der­ful part­ners East Ayr­shire Leisure Trust, Cen­tral Scot­land Green Net­work, For­est En­ter­prise Scot­land, Gal­loway and South­ern Ayr­shire Bio­sphere and Scot­tish Nat­u­ral Her­itage.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.