Our communities team provide support to the communities of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park by working with organisations such as Community Development Trusts, Community Councils and the National Park Community Partnership.
Following the charrette and development of the Community Action Plan, it was identified that the community has aspirations for Callander to become recognised as the Gateway to the Highlands and the Outdoor Capital of the National Park. Callander is the largest town in the National Park and the surrounding area’s position in the gap (or “pass”) between the Lowlands and Highlands means it is uniquely positioned to service the needs of visitors to the National Park and promote outdoor recreation in the Highlands beyond.
The “pass” looking north towards Loch Lubnaig
What is the Callander Landscape Partnership?
The Callander Landscape Partnership aims to bring the aspirations envisioned at the 2011 Callander ‘charrette’ and the Community Action Plan to fruition by better connecting the town, its people and its visitors to the very special surrounding landscape. It will use Callander’s unique position on the Highland Boundary Fault to establish the town as the ‘Outdoor Capital of the National Park’, including the creation of visitor interpretation, a cycling and walking network, and training opportunities in the magnificent surrounding countryside .
The key aims of the project are to:
It is a community-led project that is the result of collaboration between local community organisations, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Authority, Scottish Natural Heritage(SNH), Forestry Commission Scotland and Stirling Council.
Where are we now?
The Callander Landscape Partnership programme is made up of more than 20 projects that we plan to carry out in and around Callander with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The projects are grouped into four themes: restore, research, engage and explore, each with a team of people working together to make sure that projects are fully thought through and ready to go back to the HLF for further approval, next year.
During the summer months (2016) the Restore Team will be surveying Little Leny Meadow, ahead of plans to reinstate a traditional meadow management regime, with help from Plant Life and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority. We aim to put in place a regime of grass cutting and mowing that emulates the historic management of the meadow, therefore promoting growth of a wider variety of grasses and wild flowers.
Little Leny Meadow is one of the most northerly examples of a wet hay meadow and an important habitat for unusual plants, which in turn support a wide variety of invertebrates making this project important in terms of understanding biodiversity and the impact of wetter winters on that species diversity.
We also hope to provide better access and interpretation to the meadow and beyond to the Buchanan Graveyard, although negotiating the wettest parts of the meadow will present some challenges!
The next steps are to commence the Landscape Character Assessment of the project area around Callander. This will allow us to identify, describe, classify and map what is distinctive about the landscape and helps us to understand what makes it special. Over the coming weeks we will also be focusing on the delivery of a variety of contracts by consultants who will be undertaking research and commissioning work.
Each project has a dedicated team of people who are busy working together to make sure they are well planned and ready to present to the Heritage Lottery Fund, when we make our second application for funding in July next year.