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Regeneration Boost For Historic Communities

23 April 2008

Historic communities across Scotland will benefit from £8 million Culture Minister Linda Fabiani announced today (Wednesday).

The Minister launched Historic Scotland’s latest round of Conservation Area Regeneration Schemes (CARS) funding for local authorities. The grants breathe new life into run down areas through the restoration of important buildings and supporting projects that enhance the understanding of an area’s heritage,

Linda Fabiani, Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, said: “These grants have already made a huge difference in many areas, returning our historic communities to their former glory. They have meant that the architecture, building styles and materials that make places like Brechin and Campbeltown unique are properly preserved.

“By restoring our high streets and town centres we are maintaining their distinct identities, improving them for the people who live, shop and work there. It is also providing a boost to local economies, encouraging tourism and celebrating culture within our communities.

“I hope many more councils will seize this opportunity to work in partnership with Historic Scotland and other bodies to kick start regeneration projects across Scotland.”

CARS specifically target historic areas with social and economic disadvantages that make it difficult to attract investment in sustainable regeneration.  

Funding can be used for repairs and improvements to private homes and businesses as well as restoring local landmarks to bring them back into use. Local authorities can also use the money to appoint qualified conservation staff to guide the project or provide training in traditional skills.

Owners can apply for small grants for improvements such as restoring sash and case windows or clearing gutters. Funding is also provided to enable education, training opportunities and spearheading work to public spaces.

Councillor Drew Hendry, Chairman of The Highland Council’s Planning, Environment and Development Committee said: “ The funding that we have received from Historic Scotland is helping with real improvement to the quality of life in Wick. Maintaining the distinct character and heritage of some of our most treasured architectural areas in the Highlands is vitally important.

“I am sure that the positive results of the project in Pulteneytown will be a building block in the Council administration’s larger aim of maintaining and developing our Highland architectural heritage.”

Historic Scotland distributed more than £6.5 million to projects in the first year of the CAR scheme and nearly £2 million in the second. In this round of awards preference will be given to local authorities that have not previously benefited from the programme.

Notes to editors
Grants are targeted towards conservation areas where:
  • economic, social and physical need for financial support can be demonstrated; investment is identified as a priority through development plans and community planning partnerships;
  • support is demonstrated to add value to a wider package of public/ private investment and action;
  • it is actively managed in line with best practice set out in Planning Advice Note 71: Conservation Area Management; and
  • there is evidence of strong local commitment for heritage–led regeneration.
  • grant funding has not already been invested.

2.CARS are partnership projects in which Historic Scotland will be just one of the funding bodies. They typically include the Heritage Lottery Fund local authorities, heritage trusts and other public or voluntary bodies. Contributions are also made by the private sector.

3.Local authorities have until September 30, 2008, to submit an application. More information can be found at

4.Local authorities already taking part in CAR schemes include:
  • Argyll & Bute – Campbeltown
  • Aberdeen – Green Hill
  • Aberdeenshire – Peterhead & Banff
  • Angus – Brechin
  • Dumfries & Galloway – Whithorn
  • East Ayrshire – Kilmarnock & John Finnie & Bank Street
  • Edinburgh – Leith
  • Falkirk – Bo’ness
  • Fife – Dunfermline & Dysart
  • Highland – Wick
  • Loch Lomond and the Trossochs – Killin
  • Midlothian – Dalkeith Park & High Street
  • North Lanarkshire – Kilsyth
  • Perth & Kinross Council – Coupar Angus
  • South Lanarkshire – Leadhills
  • Western Isles – Stornoway

5.Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government charged with safeguarding the nation’s built heritage.  It is fully accountable to Scottish Ministers and through them to the Scottish Parliament.

6.Register for media release email alerts from If you wish to unsubscribe at any time, please email  or telephone on 0131 668 8603

For further information

Lesley Brown
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8603 or 07788 923873