Argyll and Bute Council have formed a partnership steering group with Scottish Natural Heritage, Forestry Commission Scotland, ABSEN, and Argyll & Bute Local Services Initiative to look at the possibility of establishing a new independent trust.
The proposed aim of the Trust would be to: ‘work together to sustainably maintain, enhance and promote the coast and countryside of Argyll and the Isles for the benefit of communities, business and visitors’.
This initiative comes as a result of the local authority service review which is looking at alternative forms of service delivery for a number of non statutory functions including improving and promoting outdoor access, enhancing and promoting and protecting biodiversity and the historic environment.
The opportunity is seen to be to establish a partnership organisation that is an independent body and which works closely with communities, businesses and the third sector to retain, develop and deliver these services.
Support for exploring the potential to take this approach and establish the Trust has come from the partners and is supported by The Carnegie Trust who have an interest in effective collaboration between the public and third sector to jointly provide services.
It should be noted that the proposed Trust would cover all areas of Argyll and Bute with the exception of the Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park area which is in the process of establishing their own Countryside Trust.
STAR consultants have been engaged to carry out a ‘Feasibility Study for the setting up of the Argyll and Isles Coast and Countryside Trust.
They are now seeking comments and feedback on the effect such a trust that could provide a focus on Outdoor Access, Marine and Coastal, Biodiversity including Invasive Non-Native Species and the Build Environment.
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