New framework agreed to support longer-term use of Crown Estate Scotland funding

A new framework focusing on the longer-term future use of Crown Estate Scotland funding has been agreed by councillors.

Friday, 19th March 2021, 7:00 am
Crown Estate Scotland allocation will be shared equally between the four coastal administrative areas inlcuding Kincardine and Mearns.

Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee endorsed criteria which will see 50% of Crown Estate Scotland allocations shared equally between the four coastal administrative areas of Banff and Buchan, Buchan, Formartine and Kincardine and Mearns.

The remaining half of future monies will be allocated to the Aberdeenshire Coastal Communities Challenge Fund which was created last year.

Crown Estate Scotland generates income from marine assets including aquaculture, offshore renewables, moorings and other coastal income. The council receives a proportion of this income annually to be used for coastal benefit such as support for local projects or initiatives and, while the level of funding varies by year, an average of £385,000 has been received to-date.

Funding has been awarded to a wide range of projects across Aberdeenshire’s coastal communities including new sailing club equipment, picnic benches and landscaping improvements at country parks, harbour improvements and a host of heritage initiatives.

Under the new framework, the council’s four coastal area committees will identify specific projects or initiatives which they wish to see taken forward and determine how monies are spent.

Projects applying for funding must have a tangible link to the coast and/or the sea, however there is a degree of flexibility to support initiatives up to two miles outside of the immediate coastal area.

In light of the impact the Covid pandemic has had on several existing projects, councillors also agreed to extend the deadline to commit and spend any unspent funds from the second Crown Estate allocation to March 31, 2022.

ISC chair Cllr Peter Argyle said: “Crown Estate Scotland funding has already become a very important source of financial support for a host of community projects here in Aberdeenshire.

“Looking ahead, our long-term pro-active approach to allocating this funding will enable our coastal area committees and their communities to take real ownership of new projects which will have massive benefits for all.