Key priorities for the future

Scotland’s housing minister Margaret Burgess and trustee Nicky Wilson joined forces to launch the Coalfield Regeneration Trust’s new £250,000 community investment programme at Dalmellington.

The Coalfields Community Investment programme will provide awards of between £500 and £10,000 aimed at improving employment prospects through training programmes and backing new social enterprises.

The initiative, which is being funded by the Scottish Government, will also make awards to projects to improve community facilities and make local organisations more sustainable.

Nicky Wilson, Scottish trustee and vice-chairman of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust said: “We are delighted to be in a position to offer community awards that will tackle the most pressing problems former mining communities face, particularly on the jobs front. One strand of the funding will go to supporting initiatives emerging from our communities futures and community challenge projects.

“Dalmellington was one of the first to benefit from our futures programme and our challenge programme has already created around a dozen new jobs over the last two years.

“We will also provide intensive support to help community organisations gain the skills and capacity to successfully access other funding streams.”

Housing and welfare minister Margaret Burgess said: “The Scottish Government is committed to the regeneration of our former coalfield communities.

“That is why, after a meeting with Annabelle Ewing, other MSPs and the Coalfield Regeneration Trust, I am pleased to launch the Coalfield Community Investment Programme which will see us provide a further £250,000 to support the vital work that this organisation is doing on the ground to engage with local communities.”