As a Trust, we are delighted to have been awarded a substantial grant from the UK Community Renewal Fund, which we hope will have long-term benefits for our local community. (Please see Funding Announcement from 3rd November 2021 here)
The funding has been awarded to help carry out additional research, test the feasibility and hold community engagement activities to explore the potential of four key projects;
This funding will be used to carry out further research and to consult and collaborate with partners, stakeholders and the general public to ensure that ideas are fully evaluated, shaped and supported by the local community. This funding does not mean that these projects will happen. They are to help develop plans, test the feasibility and also ensure community thoughts and opinions are built into our plans.
As a Trust, we have a duty of care to protect, promote and develop the heritage, properties and grounds at The Crichton and are charged with the important task of creating a sustainable future for The Crichton. We continue to take our responsibilities very seriously. Our reputation for sensitively preserving and developing properties and outdoor spaces at The Crichton should go some way in instilling confidence in our ability to lead on these important development projects.
Working with partners is key, so while collaborative working groups exist for some projects, others will be set up to take these projects forward. As an example, The Ladyfield site is currently owned by Dumfries and Galloway Council and has been ‘designated for development’ for over ten years in the Council’s Local Development Plan. We share the Councils passion for preserving and enhancing our built heritage and natural environment, and as a neighbour with a vested interest in the Ladyfield site and the local community, we are keen to work closely with the Council to secure the best possible outcome for the development of the site. This includes minimising any negative impact on wildlife, the local community and our heritage.
The development and wellbeing of people is also a top priority for The Crichton Trust and it is hoped that these projects will provide new opportunities for skills and employment and will create new indoor and enhanced outdoor spaces where the local community can come together to live, learn, work and enjoy. There has always been ambitious plans and forward-thinking leaders at The Crichton, and so we believe we have a responsibility to ensure that this significant opportunity to enhance The Crichton Quarter for the benefit of current and future residents is realised.
It has been a long journey to get to this stage, and the success of our funding bid is down, in part, to the work and research that has already been done to help outline these projects. A copy of the reports and planning documents from earlier research can be found here
We have no immediate plans or approval to start building works, on or off-site, and the research and public consultations that will be carried out within the funding period to June 2022, will help shape any future developments and funding bids for capital projects.
We are excited about the potential of these projects and feel proud to be given the opportunity to make sure the legacy of The Crichton lives on for future generations to enjoy.
We look forward to providing further opportunities for community engagement in the months ahead and we hope that you will want to be part of the process.