Funding available for growing Central Belt's greenspace

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Strategic greenspace improvement projects in Central Scotland can now benefit from a share of an additional £270,000 following an extension to the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) Development Fund.

The CSGN is Europe’s largest greenspace initiative which seeks to transform Central Scotland into a place where the environment adds value to the economy and where people’s lives are enriched by its quality.

Organisations in the central belt seeking to deliver strategic projects which promote healthier lifestyles and enhance the local environment within the CSGN geographic area can apply for a share of the funding available to new projects.

Successful applications will join around 20 existing projects already sharing over £600,000 previously allocated by Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS), Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and the Scottish Government in the previous round of the CSGN Development Fund. 

Relevant projects include those which encourage regeneration and enterprise and help to join up the network, particularly in areas of multiple deprivation or where there are concentrations of vacant and derelict land.

This year organisations can bid for up to two years of funding, enabling them to plan for the longer term, thereby increasing their environmental impact.  In this fourth year of the Fund, the focus is on larger scale projects and so applicants must apply for a minimum contribution of £25,000 in Year 1 (2013/2014).  Overall, projects can receive up to 50% of the total project costs, with the balance made up of both in kind contributions and match funding. 

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.

“We are encouraging organisations in Central Scotland to apply for funding in order to help us deliver the CSGN on the ground to improve the landscape of the area and create a better environment.  We have seen some fantastic projects supported through the Fund, projects that have made a real and lasting benefit to people, communities, businesses and the environment across Central Scotland.”

Over the past three years, the CSGN Development Fund has supported over 100 projects with almost £3.5 million.  In addition, around 20 existing projects will continue to enjoy support totalling a further £1.1 million from the Fund in 2013-14 and 2014-15.

The range of previous projects has been extremely diverse and has included a social enterprise in North Lanarkshire which has promoted beekeeping and community growing, a programme of woodland creation and green network enhancements in Edinburgh, and a project in Glasgow which is transforming an area of vacant and derelict land into thriving community market gardens and orchards.
Funding applications must be submitted to Forestry Commission Scotland by Friday 25 January 2013.  For more details on the CSGN Development Fund and the application form, please visit

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, equating to 70 per cent of Scotland’s population. 

FCS and SNH are lead partners for the CSGN and the CSGN Development Fund is also supported by £450,000 over 3 years from the Scottish Government’s Community Growing budget.

For further information about the CSGN, please visit

Notes to Editors

1.  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”.

2. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment & Forestry Directorate

3. 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

4. On 17th May 2012 the Minister for Environment and Climate Change announced Scottish Government’s contribution of £450,000, over three years, to the CSGN Development Fund for grow your own projects .

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 /