Recent Press Releases

We publish all of our press releases from the last 12 months here so you can keep up to date.
Please email pressenquiry@dumgal.gov.uk if you'd like further details on any of our press releases.
If you want to speak to a communications officer, you can find their office-hours telephone numbers and what areas of the council they cover at www.dumgal.gov.uk/pressenquiry.

  • D&G Full Council agrees to new Administration

    Tuesday, 24 May 2022 17:19

    Dumfries and Galloway Council [24.05.2022] has agreed to a new Administration between SNP, Labour and the Independent Group, with Councillor Stephen Thompson as Convenor of The Council, and Co-Leader alongside Councillor Linda Dorward who is also Depute Convenor, working with Councillor Richard Brodie, Leader of the Independent Group.

    In a joint statement, Councillors Thompson, Dorward and Brodie said:

    “This will be a new Administration with a new outlook, but shared ambitions and goals for the advantage of Dumfries and Galloway and we are very much looking forward to working together.

    “Our partnership will be built on mutual trust and understanding, and we are confident we can work inclusively with all Elected Members from all groups to the benefit of the region. We are engaging in a way that does politics differently and have found a way to agree on what’s best for local communities, whilst going forward and seeking consensus on a case by case basis, with colleagues.

    “Despite our political differences, we will work jointly on what really matters to the people in all our communities across our region.

    “The administration is committed to including all Councillors in the decision making processes of the Council, through joint working and developing a Council Plan.

    All groups in our administration are committed to tackling the cost of living crisis, and protecting, as far as we can, our most vulnerable individuals and communities from its effects.

    “We are determined to provide the best opportunities for our children and young people and will continue to drive forward our Council’s innovative plans for education.

    “We’re ambitious for our local economy, to promote our region’s traditional strengths – farming and forestry, tourism, food and drink, culture, leisure, energy, and the environment – and seek new opportunities for economic development.

    “We aspire to regenerate our town centres, to improve the connectivity of our region, to develop the skills of our people, and to attract others to take up employment, live here, and visit this most beautiful part of Scotland.

    “This Council is passionate about delivering the services which are needed in our region and we have agreed to work together on our shared priorities. With 27 councillors over the three groups providing an overall majority. We can provide the strong and stable leadership needed to deliver our ambitions and those of the people of Dumfries and Galloway.”


    The Council also agreed on the size of committees, proportionality, and committee chairs and vice chairs.

    Economy and Resources
    Chair: Katie Hagmann
    Vice-Chair: Sean Marshall

    Education and Learning
    Chair: Richard Brodie
    Vice-Chair: George Jamieson

    Communities
    Chair: Archie Dryburgh
    Vice-Chair: John Campbell

    Social Work Service
    Chair: Andy Ferguson
    Vice-Chair: Ian Howie

    Finance, Procurement and Transformation

    Chair: Carolyne Wilson
    Vice-chair: Dougie Campbell

    Audit, Risk and Scrutiny
    Chair: Conservative Group
    Vice-Chair: a/a

    Planning Applications
    Chair: Jim Dempster
    Vice-Chair: Emma Jordan

    Annandale and Eskdale Area Committee
    Chair: Archie Dryburgh
    Vice-Chair: Richard Brodie

    Nithsdale Area Committee
    Chair: Tracey Little
    Vice-Chair: Davie Stitt

    Stewartry Area Committee

    Chair: Dougie Campbell
    Vice-Chair: Kim Lowe


    Wigtown Area Committee
    Chair: Willie Scobie
    Vice-Chair: Katie Hagmann

  • Find it Clean, Keep it Clean! – Council Facilities staff win national award.

    Wednesday, 18 May 2022 16:40

    Our Council already knew the great achievements of our Facilities Team, but we are very proud to announce that the team was recognised on the national stage by winning the highly acclaimed award of “Outstanding Contribution to Cleaning” at the ASSIST Conference last night. This is a fantastic achievement as this category is open to all the 32 Scottish Local Authorities.

    Our dedicated team of facilities staff who have gone above and beyond to keep our schools, community facilities and workplaces clean and as germ-free as possible both before and during the pandemic. In some cases, our services in schools and key buildings would not have been able to continue as they did if it wasn’t for our amazing staff going above and beyond over the past 30 months. To be recognised at national level just re-affirms the dedication and commitment of our staff, including our janitorial and catering teams who all multi tasked to ensure our cleaning service was always delivered, and our Solutions Centre team who played a key part in many aspects of our success.

    The health and safety of customers, school pupils, staff and our communities are paramount to this Council, and particularly so during the pandemic, and cleanliness continues to be a priority to ensure we keep everyone protected. Flexibility has been important in unprecedented times as the pandemic evolved, and the Team’s ‘Find it clean, keep it clean’ model proved to be forward thinking and efficient in difficult times.

    The project was developed with a view to providing a customer focussed cleaning service. By remodelling cleaning processes and developing a joined-up approach between Cleaners and Facilities Assistants in schools and mobile teams, we created a multi-skilled and highly visible workforce able to respond to COVID cleaning requests, which varied greatly and according to need and COVID restrictions. Promotion of the ‘Find it clean, keep it clean’ motto is ensuring other staff are aware of their contribution to this new approach and support the Team ethos, recognised at the national awards.

    Lorna Meahan, Director Economy and Resources, said: “This national award is thoroughly well deserved and overdue recognition of a truly fantastic team. The Council has always understood and supported the contribution of the Facilities Team and their efforts in keeping us all safe during the pandemic, working in our schools and essential buildings. It is wonderful to see their achievements recognised at a national level. Congratulations.”

  • Summer Programme Fund 2022

    Tuesday, 10 May 2022 14:51

    Dumfries and Galloway Council is delighted to announce that £135,000 of funding will be available for local Third Sector Organisations and Childcare Providers in Dumfries and Galloway to give Children and Young people a Summer to remember! Following on from the successes of the Amazing Summer fund in 2021, we are once again seeking local organisations who will deliver free activities for children and young people aged 5-14 for the duration of the Summer Holidays, allowing them opportunities to socialise and meet with and make new friends across our region.

    There will be a particular focus on providing support and activities for children and young people who may otherwise struggle to access such experiences during the holidays, encouraging them to play and reconnect with their local communities and environments. We are looking to see a range of different activities and experiences for young people of all ages from communities across Dumfries and Galloway.

    We recognise the ongoing impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on our young people in their day-to-day lives, and this exciting programme of Summer opportunities will help them to broaden their horizons, and to build confidence whilst having fun with their friends. This programme of activities is being co-produced with local children and young people to ensure that they get the activities that they enjoy, and young people will also be key part of the decision-making panel.

    Organisations from across Dumfries and Galloway can apply for this funding. We are offering funding to provide free activities throughout the whole summer holidays from the period of Saturday 2nd July until Sunday 21st August 2022.

    A Council Spokesperson said of the fund: “This funding opportunity for our Third Sector Partners and Childcare providers continues our commitment as a local authority to ensuring all of our children and young people have the best start in life, with opportunity to access play and social activities which are vital to their physical and mental wellbeing. We are pleased to be working in partnership with all of our third sector partners and local businesses as well as our local children and young people. This funding is available for all third sector groups and childcare providers and we want to support as many groups as possible to help make this a truly amazing summer holiday for our local children and young people.”

    Elli Wadsworth, Chairperson of Dumfries & Galloway Youth Council said: “The Youth Council is really pleased to be working alongside the Council to deliver an amazing Summer programme of activities for young people. We are involved in setting the priorities for the funding and ensure that the funding goes to opportunities that will make the most difference to young people the length and breadth of Dumfries and Galloway, and also those that young people will have a lot of fun attending.”

    Applications are open now and the closing date for submission of organisations completed applications is 12 noon on Monday 23rdMay.

    Application forms and Guidance Notes can be downloaded from 9am on Monday 9th May by visiting www.dumgal.gov.uk/grants

    If you have any questions on this application process or would like any advice and guidance, please e-mail us at AmazingSummer@dumgal.gov.ukor call 01387 260 243.

  • Youth Beatz - Volunteers wanted!

    Friday, 29 April 2022 12:47

    Youth Beatz Festival is back! This event for young people in Dumfries & Galloway will return to Park Farm Showfield in Dumfries on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th June.

    The success of the festival, now in its 12th year, is a credit to those who have volunteered tens of thousands of hours in the planning and delivery of Scotland’s largest free event for young people over the previous years

    We have lots of exciting volunteering opportunities this year that can be tailored to fit your skills and talents. From drama performance and production, photography and videography, set design, media and promotion, to event infrastructure or community engagement – there’s something for everyone.

    If you are interested in volunteering, whether it’s to give back to your local community, get involved in a truly unique event, or gain experience or expertise in your industry of choice, you have until May 21st to express your interest in volunteering at Youth Beatz 2022.

    A spokesperson from Dumfries and Galloways Council said “Youth Beatz is an excellent opportunity for young people and adults to get involved in a large scale event, with opportunities for those interested in events management, through to those who want to work with young people – there’s unlimited opportunities if you have some time to spare. We’re also delighted to be welcoming back volunteers from across Scotland who will be participating in their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award gold level residential through the festival”.

    To express your interest in volunteering at Youth Beatz Festival, including The Toon, an immersive youth drama production, head over to http://youthbeatz.co.uk/get-involved/volunteer/ and complete the volunteer questionnaire.

    If you would like more information, please contact us on youthbeatz.info@dumgal.gov.uk or call 01387 260243.

  • Dumfries and Galloway Council appoints new Chief Executive

    Wednesday, 06 April 2022 15:40

    Following an extensive recruitment process, Dumfries and Galloway Council has appointed Dawn Roberts as its new Chief Executive.

    Dawn Roberts has extensive local government leadership experience having worked in local government for over 25 years. She is joining Dumfries and Galloway from Cumbria County Council where she is currently Executive Director for Corporate, Customer and Community Services and has also been fulfilling additional responsibilities as acting Deputy Chief Executive in recent months.

    Dawn Roberts commenting on her appointment said: "I am delighted to have been offered this fantastic opportunity and am really looking forward to working with members, staff and all stakeholders in my new role. I am really proud of all that has been achieved in Cumbria during my time at the County Council and I look forward to building on this experience as Dumfries and Galloway's new Chief Executive. Dumfries and Galloway Council has a really strong track record in delivering services to the people of the region and this was recognised through the recent CoSLA award for its work to strengthen community resilience through the pandemic.

    This is clearly an ambitious council for Dumfries and Galloway as a place and for the people it serves and I look forward to the challenges and opportunities ahead."

    Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, Elaine Murray and Depute Leader, Rob Davidson said: "On behalf of Elected members and staff we are pleased at the appointment of Dawn Roberts to take over as Chief Executive of our Council. We believe the authority will be in safe and experienced hands and we were fortunate to find an excellent candidate for the post. We are delighted that Dawn will be joining Dumfries and Galloway Council. We wish her good luck for the future."

    Our Interim Chief Executive and the Council's Corporate Management team will work with Dawn to ensure a seamless transition. The new Chief will take up her post in July 2022.

  • New Exhibition at Gracefield

    Wednesday, 06 April 2022 11:43

    Saturday the 2 April saw the opening day of Threads of Hope at Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries.

    It’s the hotly anticipated textiles exhibition presented every three years by guild members of the Dumfries and Galloway Guild of Spinners Weavers and Dyers, Solway Quilters and Textile & Embroidery Dumfries. This display has been delayed a year due to the lockdown.

    A ‘must see’ for anyone interested in traditional and contemporary crafts, each group has a flourishing membership and meets at Gracefield and other venues in the region to enjoy practical days, lectures, talks and knowledge-sharing. Alongside the wide selection of textile work on display, group members will be available throughout the exhibition to give demonstrations or explain about the traditional and cutting-edge techniques used. Over 100 makers have contributed their work for display and sale from across the region

    Hand-made crafts are appealing to a wide audience these days – TV programmes like BBC’s Sewing Bee demonstrate that everyone can have a go and skills such as embroidery and knitting and quilting appealing to all age-groups now. A spokesperson from the gallery says, “the enthusiasm from all the Guild members is infectious and inspiring and this year they have hands-on activities and quizzes for kids so it really is fun for all the family.”

    The groups have sadly lost some very key members since the last exhibitions. Shirley McKeand founder member of the Embroiderers group, a fabulously gifted needlewoman, was especially fond of Goldwork and her skill in this technique can be seen in the exhibition with a dedicated room 5 display. Born in Yorkshire in 1935, Shirley became a trained tailoress and worked for House of Worth. She was a passionate advocate for needlework and excelled at teaching and enthusing others. Shirley died in 2020 and is greatly missed.

    Solway Quilters exhibition is the work of 23 individual members including quilts, wall-hangings, bags and cushions made as a result of the challenges they built into the syllabus throughout the year in order to gain experience, learn new techniques and move out of the comfort zone! - often producing new and original pieces. They include 3 pieces of work as a tribute to 3 of their members who have sadly died since the last exhibition in 2018. Norma’s Quilt is made with friendship blocks by members and the final quilt was gifted to Norma when she moved into a care home in 2021. It depicts all things dear to Norma - her home and garden, cats, flowers and embroidery all in bright colours. Norma died in February this year - she was one of the founding members of Solway Quilters. For Morag and Callum all the blocks in this quilt were made by Maureen Christie for her granddaughter’s wedding present. Maureen died before she completed the quilt and members have put the blocks together and finished the quilt. Textured Calico is the work of Elma Cliff who sadly died in 2021 and this exquisite wall-hanging epitomises her talent and eye for detail.

    The Guild of Spinners, Weavers and Dyers showcase the work of over 40 members where alongside the visual impact, there is a wonderful smell from natural wools and dyes used in their weaving, knitting and felt work.

    You can find out about the groups and their activities on their webpage or Facebook pages. Gracefield runs workshops for kids from age 18mths to teens including textiles, printmaking, painting and jewellery on Saturdays in term time and Wednesdays during the holidays. Visit the website www.dgculture.co.uk see us on Facebook or just give us a ring on 01387 262084. This Easter weekend there will be the annual Easter Hunt quiz trail running from Thursday 14 to Sat 16 April – a free fun activity for all ages with a Cadbury crème egg prize for everyone who has a go.

    Admission to Gracefield is free and there is ample free parking, with extra on Edinburgh Road when it gets busy! If you are coming with a large group it’s worth pre-booking with café Refresh in advance – just ring our usual number. The Textiles exhibition continues until Saturday 7 May.

  • CD Pool Turns 50

    Monday, 28 March 2022 10:52

    In the year United States swimmer Mark Spitz becomes the first athlete to win 7 Olympic Gold medals, history was being made in the Stewartry as Castle Douglas swimming pool first opened its doors.

    Built in the Territorial Army Drill Hall at a cost of £32,000, the pool opened on the 1st April 1972 by the then Provost D.K. Whitelaw where adults were able to swim for the princely sum of 20 pence.

    However, only the bravest would dare take the plunge as the pool was heated to a rather chilly 24 degrees compared to the 30 degrees it currently operates at.

    In the past 50 years, the pool has been the starting point for many aspiring champions and beginners alike through its Learn to Swim programme,Stewartry Seals Swimming Club.

    It has also been the focus for fun family swimming and for those who enjoy swimming as part of their daily fitness routines.

    To mark its golden jubilee, Castle Douglas Swimming Pool put out a call to the local community to share any memorabilia they have that tells the stories and history of the pool, its role in the town, and of the people who have used it.

    A Council spokesperson said: “We are delighted to be celebrating the anniversary of the swimming pool at Castle Douglas, which has been at the heart of the community for 50 years. Since lockdown restrictions eased, we’ve seen more and more of our customers returning to the pool. We’re pleased so many people are using the facilities at Castle Douglas, and the other swimming pools in the Dumfries and Galloway area which we operate, to help their health and wellbeing – a vital component in our area’s recovery from the pandemic.”

    As part of the celebrations, all customers were able to enjoy a swim session for just 50p per person all day on Friday 1 April.

    What are your memories of Castle Douglas swimming pool? Email us your stories and any photos to CDpool@dumgal.gov.uk

  • New Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme launched for Dumfries

    Monday, 21 March 2022 15:13

    One of the great strengths of Dumfries is its strong community spirit and civic pride. This has been demonstrated through major community led Heritage Regeneration Projects such as the renovation of Moat Brae House and Garden, cited as being the inspiration for Peter Pan, and the refurbishment of the Theatre Royal, Scotland’s oldest continuously working theatre.

    Like many towns, Dumfries Town Centre currently suffers from a high vacancy rate for retail units, a low occupancy rate for people living in the Town Centre, vacant buildings, and the poor condition of much of its historic building stock.

    In partnership with Historic Environment Scotland (HES), The Council is today (21.3.22) introducing a heritage-led regeneration scheme which contributes to Dynamically Different Dumfries as part of the overall regeneration plan for Dumfries Town Centre. In conjunction with the CARS Scheme, the Dumfries Partnership Action Group (DPAG), with support from the Council, have been developing Dynamically Different Dumfries, the future vision and action plan for the Town Centre.

    The Dumfries CARS will see investment of approximately £1.5m into the Conservation Area, with contributions from HES, Dumfries and Galloway Council, private investment, and other sources. Dumfries CARS will consist of:

    • Grant schemes which offer part-funding for the repair of prominent traditionally constructed buildings to bring them back into full use.
    • Improvements to the public realm.
    • A training, education and awareness programme.
    • Complimentary engagement activities.

    This approach will help regenerate Dumfries Town Centre, whilst protecting and enhancing its historic character.

    Dumfries CARS Scheme will incorporate two separate grants schemes: The Priority Project Scheme and the Small Grants Scheme.

    The Priority Project Scheme will make substantial grant funding for targeted properties available. These Priority Projects will bring whole disused buildings back into reuse in entire-building renovation and repair projects and will support the aims of local regeneration partners such as Midsteeple Quarter and social enterprises such as Wheatley Homes. They will create homes and encourage retailers and small businesses back into the Town Centre. By carrying out repairs, using appropriate and high-quality materials and the correct and sympathetic traditional methods, it is intended that the restoration of these buildings will set a standard by which future development in the Conservation Area will be held to.

    The four targeted Priority Project buildings are:

    • 8 English Street
    • 11-17 English Street
    • 117-119 High Street
    • 130-132 High Street

      As part of an assessment of Dumfries Conservation Area, these buildings were identified at the planning stage of the project as key targets for major investment. This is due to a number of factors including material condition, historical importance and their impact on the greater townscape.

      The Small Grants scheme will run in conjunction with the above and will offer funding to which any owner of a traditionally constructed building in the CARS area. This fund offers smaller amounts, typically for the repair and restoration of individual features of buildings, such as the replacement of uPVC windows and doors with traditionally styled timber units or the restoration of historic shopfronts. Currently this funding pot is made up of:

    • 4 grants of up to £25,000 each
    • 5 grants of up to £10,000 each

    The exact make-up of individual grants will remain fluid as proposed funding percentages, grant amounts and intended projects can often change over the course of a CARS in line with the individual circumstances of a particular project.

    In addition to the grant schemes, a suite of training, engagement and other complimentary initiatives will be developed, including training for young people, apprenticeships in repairs and maintenance methods for traditional buildings, public engagement activities and a Public Realm Improvement Scheme. Historic Environment Scotland and the Council are keen to ensure that the good work done by the CARS serves as an impetus for future repair, reuse and correct maintenance of the historic building stock of the town and building a skilled workforce fit for future repairs and maintenance of the Conservation area is key to this aim.

    The Dumfries CARS Education and Involvement Plan aims to be a catalyst to:

    • Increase awareness, understanding and appreciation of Dumfries’s rich history and heritage.
    • Enhance opportunities for people across the community to learn, access and participate in the unique history, culture, and built environment.
    • Empower communities to take an active role in enhancing the historic environment.

    Historic Environment Scotland’s CARS funding programme has been in operation since 2007 with over £50m of Scottish Government/HES funding awarded to more than 70 schemes throughout Scotland, contributing towards over £230m of investment by local authorities, other funding bodies and property owners in these areas.

    A Council spokesperson said: “This CARS scheme will give Dumfries a much needed boost, preserving our historic infrastructure and revitalising the town centre. Property owners will be able to repair and rejuvenate their own properties with this very welcome funding, leading to a more attractive and prosperous environment for all. The addition of the education programme, which will provide our young people with the skills they need to plan their future careers is an added bonus. This will future-proof by providing our local workforce with the expertise needed for the ongoing repair and maintenance of the reinvigorated town centre.”

    Amy Eastwood, Head of Grants at HES, said: “Heritage-led regeneration and the reuse of valuable heritage assets brings innumerable benefits to our towns and cities including creating jobs, attracting investment, increasing tourism and having a positive impact on our health and wellbeing. We’re pleased to support the wider regeneration programme which will bring meaningful and long-lasting effects to the local community of Dumfries.”

    For further details on the scheme, and how to apply, go to:

    Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme (CARS) - Dumfries and Galloway Council (dumgal.gov.uk)

  • Legion Scotland granted Freedom of Dumfries and Galloway

    Monday, 21 March 2022 15:02

    The Royal British Legion Scotland (Legion Scotland) will be granted the Freedom of Dumfries and Galloway on Saturday 26 March 2022.

    Representatives of Legion Scotland branches will parade at the Crichton Estate in the presence of Lord Lieutenants, the Leader and Depute Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council and Rear Admiral Mark Beverstock, National President of Legion Scotland.

    Councillor Archie Dryburgh, the Council’s Armed Forces Champion, said: “Legion Scotland makes a vital contribution to the lives of service personnel, veterans and their families. I’m immensely proud to be the Council’s Armed Forces Champion and delighted that Dumfries and Galloway Council has granted Honorary Freeman status to Legion Scotland.”

    Councillor Rob Davidson, Depute Leader and Civic Head of the Council, said: “As the Council’s Civic Leader, I’m very pleased that our Council agreed to Grant the Freedom of Dumfries and Galloway to Legion Scotland. Along with our Freedom for the Royal Regiment of Scotland, and our Armed Forces Covenant, it demonstrates our region’s support for our armed forces.

    2021 was the 100th anniversary of the Legion and, In September 2021, Dumfries and Galloway Council agreed to grant Honorary Freeman status to Legion Scotland.

    In June 1921, Field Marshall Haig founded the Royal British Legion Scotland, now known as Legion Scotland, bringing together several charities that had been established to assist those returning from the First World War and residing in Scotland.

    Around the same time, the Royal British Legion was formed to assist those returning and living south of the border

    Earl Haig established 2 poppy appeal funds. One was organised and delivered by the Royal British Legion in all areas other than Scotland. The second was delivered by the Earl Haig Fund Scotland, now known as Poppy Scotland.

    When service personnel return to civilian life after service with the armed forces, some need community and friendship. This can be as a result of their experiences in the services of just because they are no longer part of the ‘military family’.

    Legion Scotland represents and supports veterans and their families and, every day, makes a difference to the lives of veterans through its comradeship and befriending programme, by developing stronger communities, and by supporting remembrance.

    Its large family network is spread throughout Scotland, helping to support veterans and their families to get on with their lives, assisting those who need additional support.

    Legion Scotland has more than 140 branches and 60 associated clubs, with more than 20,000 members. Each branch is run by a volunteer committee, dedicated to supporting the armed forces community.

    Legion branches throughout Scotland have been invited to attend with their standards, with the RBLS HQ Queen’s Colour being the senior standard.

    Timetable:

    1245: Parade – main car park, Crichton Estate (in front of Easterbrook Hall) DG1 4TL

    1400: Freedom Ceremony – Crichton Church

    Background info:

    Honorary Freeman status isn’t granted lightly or often in Dumfries and Galloway.

    In 1972, Astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the Moon, was granted the Freedom of Langholm.

    In 2006, Lord Macfarlane of Bearsden was granted the Freedom of Dumfries and Galloway in Kirkcudbright, in recognition of his promotion of the visual arts in the region.

    In 2008, the Royal Regiment of Scotland was granted the Freedom in recognition of its service to the nation.

    In 2012, David Stevenson was granted the Freedom of the region in Langholm, recognising his contribution to business and his community.

  • Council reacts to P&O Ferries announcement

    Friday, 18 March 2022 14:43

    Following the announcements yesterday (17.3.22) from P&O Ferries on its UK-wide operations and the dismissal of over 800 of its staff including, we understand, some based at the Cairnryan-to-Larne crossing in our region, Dumfries and Galloway Council strongly condemns the insensitive action of P&O Ferries and the manner in which it has treated its workers.

    Elaine Murray, Leader, and Rob Davidson, Depute Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “We are sickened at the actions of P&O Ferries. Our immediate thoughts are with the affected employees. This is devastating news for Dumfries and Galloway, and particularly our communities in the west. The actions of P&O Ferries towards its employees is unacceptable. Dumfries and Galloway Council is committed to fair working practices and the action of P&O Ferries towards its own employees has no place in our region.

    “We would strongly urge P&O Ferries to reconsider its course of action. If the Company continues down this route, then Dumfries and Galloway Council will reconsider P&O Ferries’ continuing participation in a potential partnership bid for a Green Freeport at Cairnryan. We are bringing an emergency motion on this to Full Council to decide the way forward.”

    “We are committed to do all that we can to assist workers and their families at this extremely difficult time. Our Council stands ready to work with national and local partners to support the local community around Cairnryan and Stranraer.

    “We would like to reassure the local community that our Council will commit to doing all that we can to help.”

  • Youth Work Easter Activities In Annandale & Eskdale

    Thursday, 17 March 2022 14:21

    Young people across Annandale and Eskdale have enjoyed various groups in their areas from Drop ins to targeted groups such as lads’ and transition groups. Throughout this term, young people have been asked what they would like to see during the Easter Holidays. The programme will offer young people aged 12 to 25 years old a wide range of free activities that will take place from Monday 4April to Saturday 16April across the length and breadth of Annandale and Eskdale.

    Do you live in Canonbie? Why not stop by on a Monday to learn more about our Drop In where each week we will have a new opportunity for you to engage with something new, maybe take on a virtual reality on the Oculus, build a house on Minecraft or compete with your friends over a game of uno!

    If you live in Langholm or the surrounding areas, why not check out the Langholm Alphabet Street to get out with your family and friends where you could win prizes for getting involved in the Challenge for the whole of April?

    Do you live in Lochmaben or surrounding areas? Both Tuesdays will see the My Pod and sports at Grummel Park for a few hours before heading into the QOS Community Centre for the Drop In where football, food and arts and crafts will be available.

    School P7 transitions have begun, and we would like to be involved! Why not pop along to one of our transition days over the holidays, more details to sign up with dates and venue please contact carla.grant@dumgal.gov.uk. We will be doing interactive workshops and lunch will be included.

    On Friday 8April, Annan Drop In and Saturday 9April, Lockerbie Drop In, will be on for an additional hour where inflatables will be in use with a party theme for the evening.

    Our Bright Stars will be heading over to Farmers Den and having an Easter egg hunt afterwards. Young people from Lockerbie will be going Go Karting to have a new experience this year.

    Councillor Andy Ferguson, chair of Communities committee said:

    “This Easter programme is looking packed and adventurous for the young people in Annandale and Eskdale. Young people’s voices and needs are clear with various opportunities available in the different locations. The Youth Works commitment of tackling poverty and mental health is clear with the various free programme available.”

    There is also plenty of activities for young people who want to come along to a session, chill out, have a chat and relax! If you have Additional Support Needs or Disabilities The Hub Club will be providing a youth led session depending on the needs of those involved. We will be having a performance during the holidays which will be live streamed through Paragon.

    Councillor John Martin, vice chair of Communities committee said:

    “Looking at the free programme on offer, it is clear to see young people have voiced what they want to see in their local community during the holiday period. It is great to see the P7 transition continuing this year with a sense of normality being able to bring various primary schools together.
    After a year of building relationships and young people being reintroduced to society, it is clear to see this year will be just as exciting for young people involved in the services.”

    Are you looking to complete a saltire award for volunteering, how would you like to be a young leader? We are looking for young leaders to support the transitions day and support myth busters to help the P7 worries and fears. This opportunity can also be volunteering in groups and supporting other young people. Please contact Carla Grant for further information.

    If you would like more information on what is available, dates and times of activities, or the link to sign up to what is on offer, please visit our Facebook page “Youth Work DG”; our Instagram @youthworkdg; or our Twitter @YOUTHWORKDG.

  • Alphabet Street - As Easy As A, B, C

    Thursday, 17 March 2022 14:06

    A new challenge is coming to Langholm this April through a partnership between Dumfries and Galloway Council Active Schools, Dumfries and Galloway Council Youth Work Service and Police Scotland.

    Alphabet Street is a fun experience for the local community to come together and walk around their town. Each week a new challenge will be posted on the Facebook page: Alphabet Street East. The challenge will have a theme, participants will have to find the letters to create a word that relates to the challenge. All photos taken will then be sent to alphabetstreeteast@outlook.com to be put into a prize draw to win various prizes from local businesses.

    Young people from Langholm Academy have been involved with creating the map, putting the letters up around the town, choosing the themes and asking businesses for donations for the prizes.

    We hope people join in this April in a safe manor following COVID guidelines. Enjoy the sunshine and see what you could win!

    Councillor Andy Ferguson, chair of Communities committee said:

    “It is great to see partnership working well in Annandale and Eskdale and creating a community activity especially with Easter holidays for the first two weeks. I hope families can enjoy creating the words and getting to walk around Langholm enjoying the views.”

    Councillor John Martin, vice chair of Communities committee said:

    “This project has worked well over West of the region. It is great to see local businesses supporting the project with donating to the prizes and for young people to be so involved with the creation of the running of the project.”

    Are you looking to complete a saltire award for volunteering, how would you like to be a young leader? This opportunity can also be volunteering in groups and supporting other young people. Please contact Carla Grant for further information.

    If you would like more information on what is available, dates and times of activities, or the link to sign up to what is on offer, please visit our Facebook page “Youth Work DG”; our Instagram @youthworkdg; or our Twitter @YOUTHWORKDG.

  • Youth Beatz 2022 - The Vengabus Is Coming!

    Friday, 11 March 2022 10:24

    After a 3 year pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Youth Beatz is back for 2022, and it is bigger and better than ever! The festival will once again take place at Park Farm, Dumfries on the weekend of Saturday the 25th and Sunday the 26th of June and will welcome young people from across the Dumfries & Galloway and the rest of Scotland over the 2-day period.

    Kicking off the Summer, the Festival will continue to deliver a wide range of fun activities, musical performances from local and emerging young talent, Youth Beatz 2019 will welcome the following headline acts:

    Saturday 25th June will be headlined by Ella Eyre and Pixie Lott, plus Nathan Evans

    Ella Eyre, multi-platinum selling artist Ella Eyre has had 4 top 10 singles and her debut album ‘Feline’ reached the UK top 5 chart. Ella has been nominated for multiple Brit Awards and Mobo Awards, and boasts over 1 billion streams of her work. Collaborations with other high calibre acts such as Sigala, Sigma and Rudimental, as well as an extremely high presence on social media, means that Ella remains a major force in UK music.

    Ella Eyre said:

    “So excited to play Youthbeatz this year, I’ve never been before and I’ve heard it’s wild so I’m looking forward to it!”

    Pixie Lott has delivered 3 UK number-one singles, sold over four million tracks, embarked on numerous worldwide tours, sold 2 million albums worldwide and written songs for some of the world's biggest stars including Selena Gomez and South Korean girlband Girls Generation. Pixie has collaborated with legendary artists Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie and John Legend, as well as KPop supergroup Big Bang (GD and Top) – their song reached #1 in South Korea and Singapore. Her songs have been used as the soundtrack to countless movies and she has received in excess of 70 million YouTube views. She is a four-time BRIT Award nominee and the winner of two MTV European Music Awards.

    Sunday 26th June will be headlined by John Newman and Jonas Blue, plus HRVY and special guests Vengaboys

    John Newman, owner of one of the most distinctive voices, writer and performer of some of the biggest anthems including 3 number 1 singles - “Feel The Love”, “Love Me Again” & “Blame”, and is one of the major breakthrough artists in the UK in recent years.

    For the best part of a decade, beginning with a straight-out-of-the-gate smash Number One with Rudimental on Feel The Love, the singer, songwriter and producer had been running, running, running. Hit had followed hit, tour had followed tour. Hitting Number On three times, closing Coachella, three Brit nominations, collaborating with heavyweights like Nile Rodgers and Calvin Harris, earning international gold and platinum sales discs.

    John Newman said:

    “I can’t wait to come and perform in Dumfries. The atmosphere in Scotland is just amazing!”

    Jonas Blue’s career to date has been astounding and its effect has been felt the world over with singles like ‘Fast Car’, ‘Perfect Strangers’ ‘Rise, ‘Mama’ & ‘Polaroid’ collectively having been certified platinum over 120 times around the globe. Amassing an army of instantly recognisable hit singles, with over 13 and a half billion global streams, over 67 million worldwide singles sales, and 5 BRIT Award nominations, Jonas has cemented his name as a main stage DJ and pop powerhouse.

    Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Young People’s Champion, Councillor Adam Wilson said:

    “Our Council is delighted to have Youth Beatz back after what feels like a long three years without Scotland’s largest free youth music festival. I am looking forward to seeing this fantastic event return not only for the high-quality music headliners at the end of each day, but for the valuable experiences it provides to our young people. Youth Beatz has helped give young people a real-life taste of working in events management, performing through the immersive youth led drama production The Toon and the opportunity to undertake their Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award through the festival.

    This year will see a further expansion of The Toon, which is a hard hitting interactive educational drama delivered by local young people and will provide young people with information and advice when dealing with issues that commonly affect their lives, such as: knife crime, drugs and alcohol, domestic violence and bullying. The first Toon Camp will take place during the Easter Holidays, where young people will begin to write and develop the 2022 instalment of the drama production.

    Another key feature of Youth Beatz 2022 is the expansion of the Youth Work Area. This area will contain some old favourites such as art and craft activities, youth information zone and chill out areas, with the new addition of local young DJs taking to the decks and providing Summer tunes within the space for young people to enjoy.

    Brand new for 2022 is a newly established partnership between Youth Beatz Festival and DG Arts Festival. This allows the Festival to significantly upscale on the offer of creative opportunities available, and to cater to a wider range of interests whilst encouraging young people to try something new and get involved in different aspects of the event.

    Also announced for this year’s festival, is a 2nd performance stage called “UPLOAD” that will provide performance slots for young musicians from across Dumfries and Galloway to show off their talent.

    Festival organisers are striving for Youth Beatz 2022 to be the best yet in terms of accessibility, with a working group recently established in order to ensure that the Festival is fully accessible and equipped to cater to the needs of everyone who wishes to attend. If you are interested in the work of this group, or feel that you may have a contribution, please use the contact details below to get in touch.

    The main Youth Beatz days will end a 7-day Fringe Festival which will see a number of fun community-based events taking place across our region, providing towns and villages the length and breadth of Dumfries and Galloway with small events for young people. The events will be developed and delivered in partnership with schools and various other community groups and organisations.

    The award-winning event is managed through a partnership led by Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Young Peoples Service, in conjunction with the Oasis Events Team. Formed in 2010, the Oasis Events Team have undergone a great deal of training and events experience and now work in close partnership with Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Young Peoples Services staff to co-design large scale events, such as Youth Beatz. The Events Team are also now training up the new youth members of the group in a peer led approach.

    Finlay Smail, young volunteer from the Oasis Events Team involved in organising the event said;

    “We are delighted that Youth Beatz is back for 2022 and can’t wait to get stuck in all over again. Developing and delivering Youth Beatz is a fantastic experience and we are looking forward to once again working with the staff at the Oasis Youth Centre to build on our events and production skills, and to act as peer mentors using our skills and experience to provide a new intake of young volunteers with the opportunity to get involved with the festival.”

    Funding secured from Event Scotland, has ensured that we can keep the legacy of Year of Young People 2018 alive in Dumfries and Galloway with regards to the continuation of the Youth Beatz festival as well as funding from National Lottery, Scottish Government, Youthlink Scotland, Alcohol & Drugs Partnership and Cashback from Communities

    Youth Beatz 2022 is a free festival and tickets are available online now from the official Youth Beatz website – www.youthbeatz.co.uk

  • £150 Cost of Living Award Details

    Wednesday, 09 March 2022 14:37

    53,000 households have been identified as eligible for the additional support for low-income households as announced in the 2022-23 Scottish Budget. £150 has been credited to each identified households 2022/23 Council Tax account, making the total support provided within Dumfries and Galloway around £8million.

    If you are eligible the payment will show on your annual 2022/23 Council Tax bill, which will reach you on or around 17 March. Further information in relation to the payment is available online at www.dumgal.gov.uk/colp

    The Cost-of-Living award is based on circumstances as of 14 February 2022 and is provided to: -

    • A person who lives in a dwelling in any Council Tax valuation band A-H, is liable for Council Tax and is in receipt of Council Tax Reduction (Benefit)
    • All persons who live in and is liable for Council Tax for a Band A-D dwelling;
    • Certain categories of person living in a property exempt from Council Tax such as:
    • All occupants under 18
    • All occupants care leavers
    • All occupants severely mentally impaired
    • Property unoccupied because the resident has gone to someone else’s home to provide care, or the resident receives care elsewhere.

    The overriding objective of the Scottish Government is that the award is made to all eligible households before the end of April this year.In order to meet this, The award has been credited to Council Tax bills. No award is to be made for empty or second homes, and only one payment per dwelling will be made.

    Communities Committee Chairman, Cllr Andy Ferguson said:

    “This payment will go to 53,000 homes across our region and will give those households £150 off their Council Tax bill. The speed the small but hugely dedicated team has worked at to process this payment is extremely commendable and I would like to place on record my thanks to them. Hopefully the £150 credit to Council Tax bills will be of some use to those who are receiving it.”

    Vice Chairman of the Communities Committee, Cllr John Martin added:

    “It’s important to note why the payment has been made this way. Many people will be asking ‘why can’t we just have cash?’ and that’s a reasonable question. The cost of processing a cheque or payment to over 50,000 households would be enormous to the Council, but making the payment this way, in line with the vast majority of other Council’s in Scotland, allows us to process it quicker and more efficiently.”

  • Recycling in Schools Rolled Out

    Thursday, 03 March 2022 16:03

    Following the successful rollout of the new household waste and recycling service to over 75,000 properties across the region, Dumfries and Galloway Council is now introducing a similar scheme for schools. A pilot study at Calside and Georgetown Primary schools tested the new service and showed that as well as high levels of interest in recycling from both pupils and staff alike, there were also efficiencies to be made. School catering staff also joined in, recycling cans, paper, card and food waste from the school canteens and kitchens. As a result, collections of general waste fell from 2-3 times per week to just once, with a marked increase in collections of materials for recycling.

    Members of the school’s ‘Global Gang School Groups’ helped shape the new service, including the suggestion to place containers in classrooms, so that learners can collect materials then transfer them to the school recycling bins at the end of the day. As a result, every classroom in Dumfries and Galloway will be provided with recycling boxes as the new service rolls out over the next few weeks. Curriculum materials based on superhero characters will also highlight the importance of reducing, re-using and recycling everyday items.

    Councillor Andy Ferguson & Cllr John Martin, Chair and Vice Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee said:

    “We are delighted with the feedback from the pilot scheme. Rolling out the new service to every school in the region will help us meet our recycling targets, reducing waste and supporting the move toward a circular economy. It is a welcome step towards meeting our commitments under the Climate Emergency Declaration and is an excellent example of council services working together to achieve clear benefits for both waste and recycling, and for our children’s education. Experiencing recycling in the classroom using the same system as the children will find at home is a great way to encourage good practice and who knows, perhaps encourage them to become the Zero Waste Heroes of the future.”

    Chair and vice Chair of Education and Learning Committee, Councillor Jeff Leaver and Cllr Ros Surtrees said:

    “This work supports our Learning for Sustainability Strategy, which promotes ‘Learning for a better world’. As always, we are delighted with the enthusiastic input we have had for this project from the pupils and staff within our pilot schools. We know our children and young people care passionately about the environment and are well supported by our school staff to deliver important changes in what we do. I’m sure that this will continue to be demonstrated by all of our schools across the region as we roll the project out across Dumfries and Galloway.”

  • Living in our Town Centres

    Wednesday, 02 March 2022 10:34

    The regeneration of town centres continues to be a priority for our Council, with the Council Plan 2017-22 committing to invest £1million a year in the Town Centre Living Fund (TCLF). Members of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy and Resources Committee (17 March) will be asked to agree to allocate:

    • £1million from Council Tax on second homes income to deliver the 2022/23 Town Centre Living Fund.
    • £500k from the 2022/23 Town Centre Living Fund to support housing developments that will contribute to the regeneration of town centres
    • £300k from the 2022/23 Town Centre Living Fund to provide grant assistance to owners of empty properties in town centres and settlements across the region to help bring them back into use as affordable housing, subject to the detailed criteria
    • £200k from the 2022/23 Town Centre Living Fund to provide grant assistance to tackle Below Tolerable Standard properties across the region, subject to the detailed criteria
    • £xxx from the 2021/22 Town Centre Projects budget to support the delivery of the Strategic Housing Investment Plan project at Station Road, Dalbeattie.

      Our Council considers the health and vibrancy of town centres to be of major importance to promote our local economy and revitalise our high street. Increasing high-quality accommodation is a key driver to create footfall and support the regeneration of town centres. It also helps to lower carbon emissions by providing homes within easy access of services and employment, reducing the need for travel and car ownership. Finding a sustainable use for empty properties and derelict sites helps retain and maintain the area’s built heritage while reducing the impact of development. A number of projects to deliver locally identified community housing and regeneration aspirations have also been supported via this route.

      An overarching principle of our Local Development Plan is that all development proposals should support sustainable development, including reduction of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions. The following actions when identifying sites for development are encouraged:

    • where possible, avoid the use of prime quality agricultural land.
    • consider reusing brownfield, vacant and derelict land and buildings instead of greenfield land.
    • maximise the use of existing infrastructure including public transport.
    • consider opportunities to develop mixed communities.

    Archie Dryburgh, Vice Chair of Economy and Resources Committee said: “The TCLF primarily contributes to the Council priorities to ‘Build the local economy’, ‘Urgently respond to climate change and transition to a carbon neutral region’ and ‘Be an inclusive Council. Enabling development of high quality and affordable housing in these locations increases the number of people living in our town centres while also supporting the Council’s Climate Emergency Declaration Strategic Plan. We must encourage people back to living in our town centres to help with not only economic regeneration, but also the regeneration and improvement of our built spaces.”

  • Supporting our most vulnerable to live in their own homes.

    Wednesday, 02 March 2022 10:32

    SCHEME OF ASSISTANCE

    Delivery of Care and Repair, Small Repairs and Home Support, Food Train At Home and Dementia Friendly Design services come under Dumfries and Galloway Council’s ‘Scheme of Assistance’ which provides support to property owners, and tenants, when carrying out work to improve the quality of private housing. These services help to maintain older and vulnerable people’s ability to live independently at home while ensuring they receive the care and support they require.

    Members of the Council’s Economy and resources Committee (17th March) will be asked to agree to recommend to Full Council:

    • An allocation of £948,000 to the Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Integration Joint Board to support the ongoing delivery of the Care and Repair service for 2022/23. The service provides grants for mandatory, and discretionary, housing adaptations for people with disabilities in the private housing sector. These awards help maintain people’s independence at home for as long as possible. The typical adaptations carried out include wet floor/level access showers, external ramps and stairlifts.
    • An allocation of £149k to the Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Integration Joint Board to fund the Small Repairs and Home Support Services. This service is currently carried out by the HandyVan, a region wide service focussed on the provision of minor adaptations for vulnerable people, who meet the published referral criteria, to promote independent living. These include plumbing repairs, home security, installing grab rails, smoke alarms, gutter cleaning and draught proofing. The ‘HandyVan’ also obtain necessary authorisations for works, recruit, train and support volunteers.
    • An allocation of £15k to the Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Integration Joint Board to fund the Dementia Friendly Design Project. Examples of the work carried out include replacing solid kitchen cupboard doors with glass doors enabling the householder to see the contents and also works to prevent falls in the home. Simple changes to the home environment for people living with dementia can prevent the need for much more costly placements in residential care.
    • An allocation of £37,400 to the Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Integration Joint Board to fund Food Train At Home. This service normally helps older people with small household jobs that do not require skilled trades. This includes work such as smoke alarm checks, light bulb changing, duvet changing and freezer defrosting. Volunteers who deliver Food Train services, such as shopping and befriending, also support older people across the region with these minor jobs.
    • An allocation of £35k to support the sustained development of the Trusted Trader scheme. The Trusted Trader Scheme, now in its seventh year, continues to be highly successful in assisting homeowners in this region identify suitable tradespeople. The traders are reviewed by customers as well as checked and monitored by the Council to make sure they are trading appropriately.

    Archie Dryburgh, Vice Chair of Economy and resources Committee said: “The Scheme of Assistance is a very important provision, enabling people to remain independent in their own homes. This has the added benefit of freeing up residential care services and pressures on our NHS. The Council will continue to work alongside the IJB, local businesses and charities to support our elderly population and to continue to provide vital services to vulnerable people living in this region. Providing Members agree to these allocations, this funding will go towards vital adaptations for those who need it most.”

    ENDS


  • Partners aim for a Dynamically Different Dumfries

    Wednesday, 02 March 2022 10:29

    Dynamically Different Dumfries is a 10-year vision and action plan for Dumfries Town Centre. It is the culmination of a new approach to community led regeneration with the community working with the Council, its partners, and Elected Members. There has been extensive community engagement providing opportunities for everyone who wants to have a say and help shape the future vision for the town centre.

    A report on the engagement and the accompanying Action Plan has now been prepared by Dumfries Partnership Action Group (DPAG) with support from Council Officers. This will be presented to Members of the Council’s Economy and Resources Committee on 17th March. Delivery of Dynamically Different Dumfries will require collaborative action from the public, private and third sectors in relation to the vision drivers and the action plan.

    DPAG is a unique collaboration of Dumfries based businesses, community organisations and social enterprises who have now been approved as a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO).

    The Action Plan is a live working document that will evolve and change through the delivery process and prioritise actions with partners. The four cross cutting themes of: inclusivity and diversity, NetZero Carbon, Innovation and Creativity are to be considered in relation to all the projects in the action plan. The launch of DPAG as a SCIO will involve an open recruitment process to appoint new Trustees and a membership group to work alongside partners, businesses, and community representatives identify funding opportunities and assist in the delivery and evaluation of the plan’s impact. This presents an ideal opportunity for individuals and organisations passionate about Dumfries town centre and wanting to make a difference, to work in partnership with others to deliver change.

    Archie Dryburgh, Vice Chair of E&R Committee said: “This is valuable work to revitalise our town centre in Dumfries which has been impacted by changing shopping habits as people migrate to shopping online, resulting in the need to reimagine our town centre for the future. Despite the challenges, people of Dumfries have always valued the culture and heritage of their town centre and I would ask that they have as much input as possible. It’s your town, please get involved and help shape the future you want.”

  • New Adventure Tourism programme calls on ambitious businesses based in Dumfries & Galloway

    Tuesday, 01 March 2022 16:39

    Dumfries and Galloways stunning landscapes, coastlines and natural environment are home to an increasing variety of leisure and adventure activities that offer unrivalled experiences for visitors.

    There is increasing recognition of the value of the outdoors to the Dumfries and Galloway economy and the role it plays in supporting sustainable economic growth by creating employment, sustaining tourism spend and enhancing the profile of the area through the promotion of its natural landscape and scenery.

    The sustainable growth of Adventure Tourism is a strategic priority for Dumfries and Galloway Council and the ambition is to accelerate business growth across targeted Adventure Tourism businesses.

    The Adventure Tourism Accelerator will offer a series of specialist workshops with inspiring speakers, one-to-one expert advice and collaboration opportunities with like-minded businesses. Those taking part will gain insight into emerging local, national and international trends to understand challenges and opportunities for adventure tourism in Dumfries and Galloway. In depth analysis into Scotland’s tourism sector and experience economy, including how to use market research effectively will be explored. Reaching desired markets via online platforms, the travel trade and trade shows will also be discussed, among other topics.

    The fully funded programme offers flexible support and has been designed specifically to develop adventure tourism experiences. It is open to a range of businesses looking to grow, from adrenaline-inducing mountain biking and white-water rafting, to hillwalking, wild camping, foraging and cookery.

    Archie Dryburgh Vice Chair of Economy and Resources Committee backed the initiative and said: “Help to grow businesses in the Adventure Tourism sector could not come at a more crucial time. Adventure operators across Dumfries and Galloway will be given the opportunity and support to really grow their business and turbo charge their efforts to reboot their operations post COVID.

    “There are incredible opportunities ahead for the sector and it is imperative that we work collaboratively to ensure that tourism is rebuilt for the better and is stronger than ever. However, with increased demand, comes increased pressure and this highlights the need for measures and standards to ensure adventure and nature-based tourism in Scotland is truly sustainable."

    “We are looking for motivated and enthusiastic businesses of all sizes to register interest. If you are keen to develop professional and personal skills, capabilities and industry connections, this programme is for you. We’ll work with businesses to maximise their potential, examining a range of topics including how technology can increase margins and make for better client experience. Delegates will come away with a tailored, business development plan to realise their ambitions and boost the adventure tourism sector here in Scotland.”

    Businesses are invited to register interest at https://bts.scot/adventure-tourism-accelerator/ before 31st March.

  • Funding for Curling Development in Stewartry

    Tuesday, 01 March 2022 12:37

    The Active Schools team in the Stewartry region have secured funding to fund 24 set of curling kits. This amounts to one for every school within the Stewartry plus each learning unit.

    Hot on the heels of the region’s success of the men’s and ladies curling teams in the Beijing 2022 Olympics, the newly established partnership between Active Schools and Community sport, Disability Sport, Scottish Curling and The Galloway Glens Landscape Partnership has also enabled the creation of a programme of schools curling to be established. This will be rolled out at the start of the next academic year.

    The funding and programme will mean that the Active Schools team in the Stewartry will be able to deliver class taster sessions, a curling disability sport event, a primary school curling competition and the Ready, Steady, Curl course as part of the secondary schools’ leadership programmes. That’s just the plan for year one.

    The aim of the Active Schools Team is to also work alongside schools and communities in the region to establish Floor Curling community sessions which will be accessible to anyone with a disability within the Stewartry area.

    Councillor Jeff Leaver Chair of Education and Learning Committee said “What an exciting time for curling in the Stewartry area. I congratulate the Active Schools team and the partnership and look forward to watching them work together to bring a terrific curling programme that can only benefit children and young people in this area.”

    Councillor Ros Surtees Vice Chair of Education and Learning Committee said “This is fantastic news and a great opportunity. It’s come at the right time with the focus and attention on such a wonderful sport. We all know the positive link between sport and health and wellbeing, so I’m pleased to hear of the planned programme and indeed the creation of accessible Floor Curling sessions. Well done to all involved.”