Funding boost for Moray residents and businesses
External funding secured by the council will go towards improving economic sustainability for residents and businesses in Moray communities.
Councillors agreed to fund electrical upgrades for Buckie Harbour with an £86,000 funding package from the Crown Estate Coastal Community Fund.
Members also agreed to continue administering the Moray Gift Card scheme with a £26,000 allocation from a £45,000 investment return it has received from the Business Loans Scotland. More than 230 Moray businesses are accepting the Moray Gift Card which encourages consumers to shop local. Since its launch in 2021, sales of gift cards have reached over £98,000. The balance of £19,000 from the investment return will be allocated to promotional incentives which target visitors. The council will work in partnership with Elgin BID, Business Gateway, Moray Chamber of Commerce, and Visit Moray Speyside.
The Economic, Development and Infrastructure Services Committee on June 20 welcomed the success of applications to the Heritage and Place Programme for the 12-month development phase of the proposed £3.3 million Forres Conservation & Heritage Scheme.
The £86,000 development stage funding has come with thanks to Historic Environment Scotland (£33,000), the National Lottery Heritage Fund Players (£33,000), and UK Shared Prosperity Fund (£20,000).
The development phase will prepare applications to the same funders for the Delivery Phase 2024-2029, which if approved, will result in a £3.3 million investment programme and will help to deliver the Forres Town Centre Improvement Plan in terms of key building repairs, public realm improvements, shop front scheme, heritage interpretation and greening of the conservation area.
Committee Chair, Cllr Marc Macrae, said: “We want our local businesses to thrive and our residents and tourists to have good experiences, which is why this funding is so welcome.”