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Pathway to create a climate resilient Strathard outlined in new Framework

A new Framework for the Strathard area has been created to realise a vision of a healthier, more climate resilient Strathard.

The Strathard Framework is a new Land Use and Rural Development Framework that has been developed by the National Park Authority, the local community and public agencies to agree a shared vision for the Strathard area, covering Kinlochard, Stronachlachar, Inversnaid and Aberfoyle.

It is the first time that both land use and development planning have been brought together in this way to provide a truly holistic view of issues and opportunities across the area, resulting in an agreed pathway to change that will decarbonise the area over the next 20 years and make this new shared vision a reality.

The Framework is the result of a multi-year project led by the National Park Authority that has seen community representatives in Strathard work with public agencies operating in the area in a co-design approach.

Building on existing plans and strategies, such as the Community Life Plans, the project has engaged a number of local stakeholders – from local residents, land managers, businesses and visitor or recreation groups, to utility companies and developers – to identify priorities to support the ambitions of the community. These include opportunities to:

  • Support Strathard’s woodlands and peatlands to act as a carbon sink while also improving the biodiversity of the area;
  • Use nature-based solutions to manage flooding along the Duchray Water;
  • Improve and enhance infrastructure and facilities such as active travel routes and new affordable housing; and
  • Create opportunities for outdoor activity and promote Strathard as an eco-tourism destination alongside a balanced visitor management approach for the area.

Underpinning the new Framework is a Delivery Plan which sets out 10 partnership projects to deliver on these ambitious priorities.

Now finalised, the Framework will sit alongside the National Park’s Local Development Plan as planning guidance to help inform development and land use proposals and determine planning decisions. It will also strongly influence development of our next Local Development Plan.

Stuart Mearns, Director Place for Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park, said: “The Strathard Framework is about sustainable land use in its widest sense – combining both land use and spatial planning for the first time to consider how land could be used and managed in line with the priorities identified by the local community.

“It is not only a fantastic example of how we can support communities to make positive contributions towards Scotland’s Net Zero goals, it also highlights how national planning policy can be put into practice at a local level and the power of the planning system to deliver big benefits for both climate and nature.

“We’re delighted the Framework is now finalised and we can begin using it to encourage appropriate land use and development proposals in Strathard. However development of the Framework is not an end in itself. This is the starting point from which partners can work together to create real change in the area.”

Trevor Geraghty, Chair of Strathard Community Council, said: “Initiatives like the Strathard Framework are critical for local democracy and engagement. The Framework brings the Strathard communities of Aberfoyle, Kinlochard, Inversnaid and Stronachlachar into the decision making process, alongside the regional and national bodies and it has been a crucial platform to influence policy based on local concerns and objectives.”

Read the Strathard Framework in full along more on how we got here. You can also stay up to date with updates from the various projects outlined in the Delivery Plan.

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