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Highland community given green light for purchase of estate land

Knock Park. Lochaline. Supplied by Morvern Games and Gala.
Knock Park. Lochaline. Supplied by Morvern Games and Gala.

A group on the Morvern peninsula has been given a grant to buy a historic piece of land for community use.

Morvern Games and Gala Week (MGGW) has been given money from the Scottish Land Fund towards the purchase and development of the 47-acre Knock Park.

The community say this is a unique opportunity to take ownership of the land for community use now and for generations to come.

The group has received £137,452 in the latest round of grants.

The land is currently owned by the Ardtornish Estate – but it has been used by the local community for its annual games and gala week for generations, as well as other shinty, football and rugby games.

Plans for the land includes establishing a permanent sports facility with games fields, a community woodland, a motorhome and camp site, storage and workshop facilities and a new sports and recreation clubhouse.

Morvern Highland Games. Lochaline. Picture by Louise Glen.

‘Absolutely delighted’

Megan Whyte, secretary of the Morvern Games and Gala Week, said: “The committee are absolutely delighted with the offer from the Scottish Land Fund to purchase Knock Park and surroundings.

“Our small committee of volunteers have worked hard to achieve this result.

“Community ownership of Knock Park allows us to create a recreational area in the heart of Lochaline for everyone to enjoy.

Morvern Games and Gala Week has always had community interest at heart, and we are passionate about making the suggestions we have received from the community a reality’.”

Miss Whyte added: “We are inviting everyone, from home or away, to become a member of our newly formed Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) to continue to support us throughout this exciting period and beyond.

“Membership is free. Please contact us on knockpark@outlook.com for a membership form.”

‘It has been a huge pleasure’

Philip Coghill, development manager with Highlands and Islands Enterprise said: “MGGW have put in a huge amount of work to get the project to this stage, and it’s been a pleasure along with my now retired colleague John MacDonald to support the group in developing their plans to take this land into community ownership with money from the Scottish Land Fund.

“The project has huge potential and I look forward to seeing their plans come to fruition.”

This grant is amongst 14, totalling £1,269,683, that have been awarded to groups across Scotland.

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