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£145,000 funding boost for Colonsay business from Highlands and Islands Enterprise

funding boost for Colonsay
Colonsay Pier is one of Cmals assets.

A project to develop new business units on the small island of Colonsay has been given a funding boost from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

Costing around £500,000, the two new business units are being built in Scalaig on the Isle of Colonsay to the south-west of Oban.

HIE has given the project £145,000 to allow more retail space for either new businesses to set up on the small island or for existing local businesses to expand.

The energy-efficient units are being built by the Colonsay Community Development Company (CCDC) after assessing the demand for the units in Scalsaig.

Scalsaig is the main port for Colonsay as CalMac operates services between the island and Oban.

Up to 18 new jobs will be created by the project

The project will create 10 new jobs during the construction phase and in the long-term will create a further eight jobs once the units have been leased.

Morag Goodfellow, HIE area manager for Argyll and the Islands, said: “Like many of our rural areas and island communities, there are both challenges and opportunities on Colonsay. We have been working with CCDC for many years, supporting their work in strengthening community resilience on the island.

“I am very pleased we have been able to support this latest initiative and look forward to seeing the new workshops play a key role in supporting economic activity on the island.”

For an island with around 135 residents, investing in more opportunities for local economic growth has been welcomed.

Like many rural areas in the Highlands and Islands, Colonsay has been subject to a declining population as young people look for jobs on the mainland.

Caroline Seymour, project coordinator with CDCD, said: “We have reached the point where we can now see real progress on the ground as we work towards a sustainable community and economy for the people of Colonsay.

“The new commercial units will be providing fresh opportunities for businesses that we have not seen here for many years.”

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