News

Making Orchards Your Business

Forth Environment Link is inviting applications from anyone interested in studying for an ILM Level 2 in Exploring Business Enterprise course.

The course, run in conjunction with SRUC Elmwood Campus in Fife, will look at opportunities for setting up a new business, or diversifying an existing business relating to orchards and orchard fruit.  It is open to anyone in the Clackmannanshire, Falkirk or Stirling Local Authority areas, but we would also welcome applications from people in the Central Scotland Green Network area.

The course, which is a project of the Forth Valley Orchards’ Initiative, is a contribution towards developing the economic potential of Forth Valley’s orchards, and aims to offer individuals the opportunity to explore enterprise – its purpose, functions and operations, and recognise the basic personal knowledge and skills required to work effectively and successfully within an enterprise. It is important to note that the focus of the course will be on exploring business rather than specifically on orchards.

Read more ...

Cash Boost for Green Community Projects in Central Scotland

community_large

Environmental community projects in Central Scotland working to improve their local greenspace could be given a cash boost following today's launch of this year’s grant funding from the Central Scotland Green Network’s (CSGN) Community Projects Fund.

The CSGN Community Projects Fund, supported by Forestry Commission Scotland, provides one-off grants of up to £2,000 and aims to encourage work at a grass-roots level to deliver green network enhancements on the ground, as well as increase community use of local greenspace.

All projects must be carried out within the CSGN boundaries, with candidates submitting a short application form by no later than midday on 2 November 2012.

Read more ...

Launching Soon: CSGN Community Projects Fund

community_large

Community groups should look out for this fund which will launch in the next two weeks.

This fund will allow groups to bid for up to £2000 to:

  • Deliver green network improvements on the ground and/or
  • Increase community use of green networks and/or
  • Increase community involvement in the maintenance and enhancement of green networks locally.


Projects must be completed by the end of March 2013.

Further details about the fund will be released in September 2012 and sent out through our Network News mailing list.

Green Funding Boost for Educational Spaces in Central Scotland

Educational establishments in Central Scotland, keen to improve their grounds, local green spaces and woodlands, can now benefit from an extension to the Central Scotland Green Network’s (CSGN) Learning Outdoors Fund.

The CSGN Learning Outdoors Fund, supported by Forestry Commission Scotland, is now in its second year.  It aims to promote learning and play outdoors and healthier lifestyles amongst the education communities by backing the development of the outdoor space around nurseries and schools.

Schools and nurseries across Central Scotland can apply for a grant of between £200 and £350 to develop the outdoor educational space within their grounds and beyond, to encourage more children to participate in outdoor learning and natural play.  The grant can be used to either develop the space or purchase equipment to use for learning or play outside.

Funding is also available to support training or other educational resources to enable staff to lead outdoor learning and natural play.

Read more ...

City of Edinburgh Council leads the Green Way

concordate_01

The City of Edinburgh Council is the first Council to sign up to the CSGN’s Local Authority Concordat, which recognises its commitment to formally help deliver the CSGN vision and highlights the fundamental role local authorities have to play in helping to achieve the network’s aims.

The City of Edinburgh Council has pledged to embed the CSGN in all relevant policies, strategies and plans and to promote connectivity and multifunctional use of all types of greenspace at a range of scales in both urban and rural areas. The Council has also committed to identifying opportunities and priority areas for Green Network enhancement to target available resources and facilitate its delivery.

Keith Geddes, Chair of the Central Scotland Green Network Partnership Board, said: “In order to achieve the CSGN aims of delivering a high quality green network that will meet the Scottish Government’s environmental, social and economic objectives, we need to share resources, best practice and new thinking.

“Our Local Authority Concordat represents a collective understanding that working in partnership will ensure policies and resources are aligned and will in turn achieve the optimum results for all parties involved. I hugely welcome the fact that the City of Edinburgh Council has come on board and we look forward to building on our relationship to create a lasting legacy for the future.”

Cllr Andrew Burns, Leader of the City of Edinburgh Council, said: "By signing up to the network we are underlining the capital coalition's commitment to a greener Edinburgh.

“We already help to create a better environment through our work on parks and other green spaces, routes for walking and cycling, and efforts to reduce our own impact as an organisation. But we can also further support the network's objectives through our approach to community plans and the built environment."

concordate_02

CSGN Initiative Brings John Muir Home

cameron_mcneish_web

Over 150 invited guests attended a reception organised by the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) last night (13th September), to highlight the network’s plans for developing The John Muir Coast to Coast Trail, as part of the celebrations to commemorate the centenary of the Scots born naturalist’s death in 2014.

The reception, ‘Bringing John Muir Home’, was held at the Scottish Parliament Garden Lobby and sponsored by Colin Beattie MSP, member for Midlothian North & Musselburgh. 

The CSGN will be opening The John Muir Coast to Coast Trail in April 2014, one of many events that will take place during the year to celebrate Muir’s life and honour his legacy.  This new route will run from Dunbar to Helensburgh, passing through nine council areas and the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park.  It will include the Dunbar to Musselburgh section of the existing John Muir Way in East Lothian.

During the reception broadcaster and wilderness hiker Cameron McNeish (pictured above) provided commentary about John Muir and long distance routes, along with Derek Mackay MSP, Minister for Local Government and Planning, who commented on the project’s vision.

Collin Beattie MSP    

Derek Mackay said: "The international esteem in which John Muir is rightly held will help raise the profile of the excellent environmental work being done by the Central Scotland Green Network partners, ensuring that everyone is made aware of the varied outdoor leisure and recreational opportunities on offer in Central Scotland."

Cameron McNeish said: “I am delighted that Scotland is re-claiming John Muir as one of our own.  His wisdom and his philosophy is as important in 21st century Scotland as it was in late 19th century California and we would do well to listen again to his vital messages about how we look after the planet.  Muir believed passionately in encouraging people to get out into the green places and I'm sure the new John Muir Coast to Coast Trail will do just that."

csgn_table_web kg_lbl_web

It is anticipated that the extended route will not only celebrate John Muir, but also create significant and lasting economic benefit.   A recent study commissioned by Scottish Natural Heritage estimates that some 700 jobs could be created over the first five years of the route’s existence with an additional 9,000 end to end users over the first year.

Read the article about this project on the John Muir Trust website.

Making the most of communities natural assets

gismall

The Scottish Government has published an information note aimed at community planning partnerships, economic regeneration partnerships and members on making the most of communities natural assets in terms of green infrastructure.

In this note, green infrastructure is defined as healthy soils, clean rivers, wnatural habitats, wild species and landscapes; peatbog, woodlands, tidal mudflats, underwater reefs, urban parks and greenspaces. The note explains how communities and those who serve them can use land and water in a way which works with nature to sustain the benefits nature provides. It suggests some practical steps to make the most of green infrastructure and provides links to further information and examples.

The note is part of a suit of documents that site alongside the Land Use Strategy. It is available to view online or download as a pdf here.