After a number of delays, the long-awaited Feasibility Study confirming the viability of the community buying Longrigg Woodland will be published in December. In the new year, there will be a period of consultation, a survey and opportunities to discuss the idea of a woodland buyout. With no January De tha Dol? please keep an eye on social media, the website and notice boards for news of the consultation.
The working group has been exploring all possible options for extracting the timber, which has taken quite some additional time. This has involved making more enquiries, seeking advice and working with the consultants on some further options for possible harvesting, extraction and restocking of the woodland. The consultants’ reports i.e. the feasibility study, business case, etc. are being finalised. It is the intention then to present the reports, findings and any recommendations at a public event, or events if social distancing requires more than one event. The aim being to provide the opportunity to discuss the matter and establish a consensus on which course of action might be preferred and how best to proceed. If a decision to proceed is made, the Community Company Board can submit an application to the Scottish Land Fund in February 2020. It will also be necessary to establish a new and larger committee to take the next phase forward.
Investigations into Longrigg Woodland are progressing! We still seem on track for knowing the full picture in Spring 2020.
We have had a specialist access survey carried out and are awaiting the results from that study.
The consultants are working on the final draft report for us after our lengthy constructive feedback on the first draft. We’re getting so much closer now to knowing what Longrigg Woodland could mean for the community.
The first draft report has arrived from the Consultants. We have worked through maticulously and given them feedback to shape the final draft. We hope to be ready to speak to you all about it in Spring 2020.
Our team of Consultants are on site and carrying out studies of Longrigg Woodland and consulting members of the Communtiy
Please see the Initial Reports for Longrigg Woodland HERE
If you have not had chance to get involved so far or would like to be contacted by the consultants, please let us know!
Our application to the Scottish Land Fund to undertake the Feasibility and Viability Study of Longrigg Woodland was successful!
We will be working with the team of consultants this winter to complete the feasibility study of the Woodland.
This study will help us to identify various options and costings for management and extraction (routes and methods) of the current timber resource and its value. It will give us options for the future management of the woodland and identify what potential it may have in terms of community benefits, employment etc. Once the consultant has completed the study, there will be a community consultation to present the findings.
Background summer 2018
In March 2017, The Sunart Community Company and Community Council held a public Community Woodland Workshop. This was initiated because Forestry Commission Scotland contacted the Community Council to inform them that Longrigg Woodland had been earmarked for disposal (sale). Their first port of call is to offer it to the community, and if the community does not wish to purchase it, it goes on the open market.
The Sunart Community Council gave the Community Company the go ahead to investigate viability for a Community Woodland project.
Following the Community Workshop held in March, the Sunart Community Woodland Working Group formed with the purpose of investigating the viability and potential for our own Community Woodland project. The LDO’s have been managing the project, however they are working on a wide range of projects in the area, some of which have taken more of a priority over the last year.
Investigations are underway, and the valuation has now been carried out by the District Valuer. No commitment has been made to purchasing Longrigg Woodland. The Forestry Commission are aware that we have substantial investigations to carry out before we are able to make a decision whether to proceed with a purchase or not.
We submitted an application to the Scottish Land Fund for Stage (SLF) 1 Funding.
The SLF funding will be for us to commission a Feasibility and Viability study of the Woodland. This study will help us to identify various options and costings for management and extraction (routes and methods) of the current timber resource and its value. It will give us options for the future management of the woodland and identify what potential it may have in terms of community benefits, employment etc. Once the consultant has completed the study, there will be a community consultation to present the findings.
We compiled and sent out a briefing document for the Feasibility and Viability Study to 5 consultants to tender for. We have had two responses and agreed on the successful candidate.