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Cairngorms 2030 project secures £12.5m funding

The Cairngorms National Park has secured the largest award amongst five projects across the UK to receive a share of £50million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund’s Heritage Horizon Awards.

The Cairngorms 2030: people and nature thriving together project has been developed by the National Park Authority with 45 partners. The plan includes more than 20 schemes across the National Park, which is the largest of the UK and home to 25% of all its threatened species. The schemes planned include restoring 3,500 hectares of peatland, planting thousands of trees to help add 1,000 hectares of woodland cover, developing a new nature-based dementia centre, segregated walking and cycling routes around Aviemore, and setting up an electric bike network. The aim is to move towards net-zero carbon emissions and deliver a “wellbeing” economy.

The Park’s convenor, Xander McDade, said: “We believe that it is only by communities coming together that we can tackle the climate emergency and nature crisis. This funding allows us to take forward critical work in communities and landscapes right across the national park.”

Caroline Clark, Scotland director at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are delighted Cairngorms National Park Authority has won this major award in recognition of its ground-breaking holistic proposal to transforming life, environment and nature within an area so highly important to conserving and protecting Scotland’s biodiversity, and with a rich cultural heritage.”

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