CSGN Development Fund Boost

Environment boost for central belt residents

The following news release was issued jointly today, by FCS and SNH:

Plans to improve the environment of Scotland's central belt and the quality of life of its three million residents received a boost today with additional support for Europe's biggest greenspace initiative.

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) have confirmed extra support for the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) development fund, which will encourage the creation of better quality greenspace for people and wildlife.

The fund aims to make the central belt, from Ayrshire, Inverclyde and Dunbartonshire in the west through to Fife and East Lothian in the east, a more attractive place in which to live, work and visit.

Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham welcomed the move saying:

"The Central Scotland Green Network is an essential element of our strategy for Scotland's long term development. The fund will act as a stimulus for preparatory work which will lead to real change in the coming years."

The CSGN aims to increase woodland cover by 50 per cent, boost outdoor recreation opportunities, improve the landscape and regenerate derelict and vacant land in within its boundary.

The fund was originally set up with £500,000 from Forestry Commission Scotland. Both FCS and SNH have allocated an extra £200,000 each, bringing the total for the Central Scotland Green Network fund to £900,000.

Keith Geddes, chair of the Central Scotland Green Network Partnership Board, added:

"This additional funding is a welcome boost and will have a direct benefit on the lives of over three million Scots living and working within central Scotland. It is a further step towards creating a greener, more attractive environment for people to live and work and will help create a more attractive environment for companies seeking to invest in Scotland."

SNH's contribution of £200,000 will also widen the eligibility of the fund. It currently offers support for the first stages of development work towards larger scale projects, including site investigation, surveys, planning and design, mapping, data collection and community or partner consultations.

As a result of the SNH funding, £200,000 will now be available for projects without a significant element of woodland planting or management, allowing more people to apply.

Funding is available for high quality projects that include:

  • Woodland creation and management;
  • the development of high quality landscape structures which support development plan settlement strategies (including --- accessible greenspace for communities)
  • the development of strategic routes for active travel and recreation
  • the development of strategic habitat networks and habitat development projects
  • the restoration of vacant and derelict land for green network purposes the integration of woodland, habitat, greenspace and access development with water catchment and coastal zone management.

Projects will be judged competitively against the scheme criteria. Further details can be found at: Closing date for applications is 30 September 2010 and projects need to be completed and the funding drawn down by 31 March 2011.

Design Skills Symposium 2010

West Park, Dundee, Tuesday 31st August 2010 and Wednesday 1st September 2010

Climate change is one of the most significant challenges of our time. Scotland has set out ambitious targets to meet this challenge through the Climate Change Act. The planning reform agenda couples this aim with, ‘the creation of places where people want to be.’ Planning for places in a low carbon future is a key issue for planners, developers, designers and citizens. The Design Skills Symposium is a two day non-residential training event that seeks to provide an opportunity to use design skills to meet this challenge.

The event is a collaboration between Architecture and Design Scotland, Scottish Centre for Regeneration, Improvement Service and Architecture and Place Division. It is aimed at everyone involved in the shaping and delivery of places in Scotland. This includes the delivery and planning of green spaces.

View a detailed flyer please go to : Skills Symposium

For a booking form please send a note of interest to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Additional Announcement:
New Architecture and Design Scotland (A+DS) Chief Executive Jim MacDonald today revealed that Klas Tham, the internationally renowned designer who led the design and delivery of Bo01 in Malmö, will address the Scottish Design Skills Symposium in September. The Symposium is a collaborative initiative between A+DS, Improvement Services, and the Scottish Centre for Regeneration and Architecture and Place Division of Scottish Government.

The application submission date is now 13 August.

CSGN at The Royal Highland Show

Central Scotland Green Network partners are showcasing current projects at the Royal Highland Show this week (24th – 27th June 2010). A number of organisations from across the CSGN geography are exhibiting in the marquee, being hosted by Central Scotland Forest Trust:

  • Central Scotland Forest Trust
  • Woodland Trust
  • Edinburgh & Lothians Greenspace Trust
  • Fife Coastal Forum
  • Ayrshire Woodlands Initiative
  • Helix Trust

If you are visiting the show, drop in and see us in the Forestry Arena, 4th Avenue.

RHS Tent Woodland Trust Stand

New Fund to develop Central Scotland Green Network

Europe’s biggest greenspace initiative, based in the central belt of Scotland, has received a £500,000 shot in the arm to help kick-start delivery work for the project.

The funding, in the form of a new Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) Development Fund, will ultimately help the initiative reach its goals of transforming the area by increasing woodland cover by 50 per cent, boosting outdoor recreation opportunities, improving the landscape and regenerating derelict and vacant land.

Announcing the new development fund, Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham said:

“The CSGN has the ability to transform the area’s environment and the health of three million people living in the central belt. The initiative will also give the network area a key competitive edge by creating a higher quality working environment which will attract more companies.

“This is a long-term goal for the CSGN and the funding scheme announced today is a first step to stimulate development work towards larger scale projects. “

The new fund, administered by Forestry Commission Scotland, will support costs for a range of early activities including site investigation work, surveys, planning and design work, mapping, data collection and community or stakeholder consultations. Support will be focused on proposals that will lead to real change on the ground in the next few years.

Keith Geddes, Chair of the CSGN added:

“This welcome news will kick start preparatory work that will lead to a variety of projects which will help transform central Scotland. We will be exploring other sources of finance in the public and private sectors as a means of creating high quality, attractive places where people want to live and work, where companies want to invest, and where tourists want to visit.”

The CSGN stretches from Ayrshire, Inverclyde and Dunbartonshire in the west through to Fife and East Lothian in the east. Forestry Commission Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage are joint lead partners for the development of the Central Scotland Green Network.

For fuller details of the CSGN Development Fund, log on to .

Consultation Launch

Since June last year the bodies charged by Government with leading this initiative, Forestry Commission Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage, have been working closely with a wide range of bodies to explore just what this initiative could offer. Work has been carried out to identify early priorities, to meet strategic needs, accelerate action and address barriers to delivery.

The culmination of this work was launched last week at Motherwell College on the Ravenscraig site in the form of a ‘prospectus’ that sets out a vision and proposed goals for the initiative.

CSGN Event Photo CSGN Event Photo
CSGN Event Photo CSGN Event Photo

The Prospectus is now open for consultation. Running alongside this, the Support Unit are also consulting on the Draft Vision and Work Plan (2010-2015). Both documents and a questionnaire along with further details about the consultation are available at:

There will be a number of workshop sessions relating to the consultation in late May / early June. We will send further details of these shortly and also post details on our website.

We will also be using the CSGN Community of Practice to host a number of online events and open up discussion surrounding the CSGN.

Prospectus Launch Invite

The CSGN Prospectus will be launched on the 19th of April at 5pm, Motherwell College (1 Enterprise Way, Motherwell, ML1 2TX)

"Our venue is the newly opened Motherwell College Campus. Also taking shape at Ravenscraig is the Innovation Park, and I am delighted that we will have David Kelly from the Building Research Establishment to talk to us about this exciting and relevant project.

The Central Scotland Green Network is hugely ambitious in its aims, envisaged impact and the area it will cover. We are seeking a transformation in environmental quality across the Central Belt. It will require the support and contribution of many organisations and individuals from the public, private and voluntary sectors. Reflecting this, we are inviting to this event key players from across a number of sectors and we would be delighted if you could attend."

Keith Geddes, Chair

If you have not received an invite, but are interested in attending, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. as soon as possible.

First Chair for CSGN

Keith Geddes

Europe's biggest greenspace project now has a champion to drive forward the transformation of Scotland's central belt into a more attractive place to live and work.

With vast experience in local government, environmental bodies and public relations, Keith Geddes will become the first Chair of the Central Scotland Green Network partnership board.

Keith's job will be to guide the strategic development of the ambitious project, which aims to green up landscape settings and bring back to life the area's post-industrial legacy of derelict and vacant land.

Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham said:

"With over three million people living in the project's boundary, the Central Scotland Green Network has huge potential to change a great many lives for the better.

"A key element to making this happen will be partnership working across all the agencies, communities and public bodies found in the area. Keith's skills and experience will be invaluable to taking this forward and I wish him every success."

Keith Geddes has a strong background in local government and environmental bodies. He served as President of COSLA between 1996-99. Currently he is Deputy Chair of Scottish Natural Heritage, a post he relinquishes in March, and between 2003 and 2009 he chaired greenspacescotland the body set up to provide a national lead on local action to improve the environment of our towns and cities. Currently he is policy director in an employee owned public relations company. On a personal level he is a member of the John Muir Trust.

Mr Geddes commented:

"I'm delighted to take up this challenge and look forward to working with the vast range of organisations which will help make this groundbreaking initiative successful.

"In the current economic climate more needs to be done to make the central belt a location for inward investment, business expansion and tourism. Working in partnership with established bodies such as the Glasgow and Clyde Valley Green Network, the Edinburgh and Lothians Greenspace Trust and local community groups, our goal is to make the central belt of Scotland a thriving and vibrant place where the environment helps communities and business flourish."

The Central Scotland Green Network is one of 14 ‘national developments' designated in the Scottish Government's 2nd National Planning Framework, along with projects such as the new Forth Road Bridge and high speed rail link from Scotland to London.

The area covered by the initiative stretches from Ayrshire, Inverclyde and Dunbartonshire in the west, through to Fife and East Lothian in the east.

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