Rural funding priorities

Borders residents are being given the opportunity to help shape a programme of measures to support for rural communities.

Consultations on the new Scotland Rural Development Programme (SRDP)are now underway and during that process a meeting is taking place at the Lodge Hotel in Carfraemill on Monday, May 13 at 7.45pm to give members of the public a chance to air their views.

Senior Scottish Government officials are chairing the road show - one of fourteen taking place across Scotland. A podcast will also be available for those who are unable to attend a show.

As the current SRDP nears its end a new programme needs to be agreed on how money from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Scottish Government should be spent in rural areas. The environment; modernisation of agriculture; forestry; business development; rural tourism; and support for community groups and support for those living and working in fragile remote areas are all on the agenda.

Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead said: ““The current SRDP will deliver around £1.2 billion of support to rural Scotland.

“We’re determined to make sure there will still be excellent opportunities to continue to support economic growth, develop vibrant rural communities and further utilise Scotland’s natural environment and heritage.”