Heritage Lottery Fund has announced a £2.9 million contribution to the Coigach - Assynt Living Landscapes scheme in the far north-west of Scotland and Woodland Trust Scotland are delighted to be delivering the woodland elements.
What is Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape?
Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape (CALL) is a unique community partnership project which aims to bring environmental and economic benefits to the Coigach and Assynt region found between Ullapool and Lochinver.
CALL is a partnership between the Assynt Foundation, Culag Community Woodland Trust, Eisg Brachaidh Estate, John Muir Trust, Kylesku estate, Tanera Mor, and Scottish Wildlife Trust. These landowners have joined forces to deliver one of the largest ecosystem restoration project in Britain – an aspirational 50-year plan to bring woodland connectivity, species-rich flora and fauna, and economic growth back to the Scottish uplands.
CALL's area covers 635km square, with a local population of 1,200, whilst some of the most enigmatic mountains in the UK are within the patch which also boasts a National Scenic Area, 3 SACs, 2 SPAs, 8 SSSIs, a Marine Protected Area, an NNR and 2 Core Wild Land areas.
Heritage Lottery Fund is contributing £2.9m to support the ambitious scheme and the Woodland Trust will be managing delivery of the scheme's woodland elements, to a value of around £1m.
The wider plan involves dozens of individual projects from path work to artists in residence.
The Coigach - Assynt Living Landscape vision is for:
A landscape managed for the needs of, and by, the local population
A place in which people and wildlife can thrive, side by side, in balance with one another
An area whose rich cultural heritage is appreciated and respected, and contributes to management and decision making
This is a very special place indeed and it is hugely exciting to be involved as the woodland partner in these ambitious plans.