Greenspace funding boosts access in central belt

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11 APRIL 2013NEWS RELEASE No: 15914

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A new canoe trail from Edinburgh to Glasgow and a new ‘Gateway’ to Scotland’s National Tree Collections are just two of the nine greenspace projects to share nearly £500,000. 

The additional funding, from the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) Development Fund, has been awarded to projects right across the central belt which enhances access to a high quality environment.

Projects in Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Edinburgh, West Lothian, Fife, Ayrshire and Clackmannanshire have won funding.

Minister for the Environment and Climate Change, Paul Wheelhouse, said: 

“The Central Scotland Green Network is the biggest greenspace project of its kind in Europe.

“The long-term plan is to transform the central belt into a more vibrant place for people to live and work in, with better access to greenspace, and all the health benefits that come from that,  and improved economic potential for business.

“Today’s funding announcement will help kickstart work on a number of new projects which will make a real difference to the lives of people across the central belt.

“Added to the projects announced this time last year, they will represent an ambitious programme of work to deliver our vision for a greener, healthier, more vibrant Central Scotland.”

Keith Geddes, Chair of the CSGN Partnership Board, said: “This significant extension to our Development Fund will ensure we continue to make a vital contribution to projects working towards improving the central belt.

“The successful recipients will help us to deliver the CSGN on the ground, to improve the landscape of the area and make a real and lasting benefit to people, communities, businesses and the environment across Central Scotland.”

The CSGN stretches from Ayrshire, Inverclyde and Dunbartonshire in the west to Fife and the Lothians in the east.  It encompasses 19 local authorities across 10,000 sq km and has the potential to benefit 3.5million people, 70 per cent of Scotland’s population.

The nine new projects to receive funding from the latest round of applications to the Fund are:
• £36,487 to Scottish Canals to create a 92 km canoe trail from Edinburgh to Glasgow, along the Forth & Clyde and Union canals.
• £133,371 to the Friends of Glasgow Botanic Gardens to create a new “tree hub” that will serve as a gateway to Scotland’s National Tree Collections for the people of Central Scotland.
• £46,215 to the Glasgow and Clyde Valley Green Network Partnership to support the delivery of the Seven Lochs Wetland Park in the Gartloch-Gartcosh area of Glasgow & North Lanarkshire.
• £38,079 to Edinburgh & Lothians Greenspace Trust to deliver a programme of habitat improvements at priority locations along the city’s off-road cycle network.
• £75,000 to Central Scotland Forest Trust to develop a programme of woodland, greenspace, wetland and path improvements along the Dedridge Burn and Murieston Water corridors in south Livingston.
• £70,000 to North Ayrshire Council for path network improvements linking the town of Irvine with the Irvine Innovation and Industry site.
• £38,805 to develop the Garnock Valley Futurescape project delivering landscape scale conservation across a large swathe of North Ayrshire.
• £25,000 to the Scottish Rights of Way and Access Society for preparatory work on a new long distance route walking and cycling route – the Pilgrim’s Way - between Dunfermline and St Andrews.
• £32,700 to Clackmannanshire Council for a programme of improvements to public places around Alloa Tower and town centre.
The nine new projects will join 19 existing projects from the previous round of applications awarded funding in 2013-15.

For further information about the CSGN, please visit

Notes to Editors

1.   Further information on the projects is available by calling the number at the end of the news release or by contacting the organisation receiving the funds.
2.  Forestry Commission Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage are joint lead partners for the development of the Central Scotland Green Network.
The Scottish Government’s second National Planning Framework, June 2009 identifies the CSGN as a national priority, which will deliver:
“...a step change in environmental quality, woodland cover and recreational opportunities...[and] make Central Scotland a more attractive place to live in, do business and visit; help to absorb CO²; enhance biodiversity; and promote active travel and healthier life styles”.
3. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment & Forestry Directorate
4. Scottish Natural Heritage is the Government’s adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland. Its role is to help everyone understand, value and enjoy Scotland’s nature now and in the future.  For further information on SNH, please visit
5. Media enquiries: Forestry Commission Scotland press office to Steve Williams 0131 314 6508 or for CSGN call Roanna Katz at The BIG Partnership on 0141 333 9585 /