Threave Landscape Restoration Project in line for £110,000 cash boost

By Stuart Gillespie

A scheme that aims to transform countryside near Castle Douglas is in line for a £110,000 cash boost.

National Trust for Scotland claims the Threave Landscape Restoration Project will turn the land at Kelton Mains Farm on the outskirts of the town into a species-rich, restored natural landscape over the next 100 years.

And the scheme is now set to receive £110,000 from the Scottish Government’s Nature Restoration Fund.

The move is set to be rubber-stamped at the council’s economy and resources committee on Tuesday.

The fund has £10 million to dish out across Scotland, with the council’s share of that coming in at £135,000.

It is recommended the Threave scheme receives the lion’s share of the cash.

The money will be used for a number of aspects including removing flood banking so that the River Dee will re-enter the farms wetlands when it is at a high level.

It is claimed this will “rejuvenate the wetlands making them more biodiverse and reconnect the river to the landscape”.

NTS, which is working with the Galloway Glens Landscape Partnership and a number of other organisations on the project, also plan to remove field boundaries and fit cattle with smart collars which will be fitted with GPS systems. These will keep the beasts in specific areas “without any barriers between them and the public”.

And by allowing the cows to graze land, it is claimed this will make it more attractive to geese, ducks and swans.

Councillors will also hear that the project also includes plans to remove non-native forests and plant native trees.

One other project is in line to receive cash from the Nature Restoration Fund. Officers are recommending that the Dumfries and Galloway Tree Planting Grants Fund receives the remaining £25,000.

The scheme was launched earlier this year and provided community groups and landowners across the south of Scotland grants of up to £1,000 to plant native trees.

Thirty grants were issued within three months and councillors will be told it is assumed there will be “strong” demand for grants under the Dumfries and Galloway specific scheme.


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