Sites for new orchards in Cairngorms National Park chosen

Apple tree Apples will be among the fruit to be grown in the park's new orchards

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Eighteen orchards are to be created in the Cairngorms National Park.

The park authority had sought 10 sites to help mark its 10th anniversary, but added eight more because of the high number of responses to its call.

The sites selected are in the Highlands, Aberdeenshire, Moray and Perthshire.

The orchards will contain eight trees, which will be a mixture of apple, plum and pear. European funding will help to cover the cost of the project.

Sixteen trees are to be planted at Drumin Castle in Glenlivet after the Crown Estate offered to match the scheme's funding for that site.

The Cairngorms National Park Authority, Soil Association and Cairngorms Food for Life programme are involved in the orchards project.

Glynis Ross, Cairngorms Food for Life development officer, said the organisations had been delighted by the amount of interest in the project.

She said: "We want communities to utilise their green spaces and become more sustainable by growing their own food.

"The inclusion of another eight orchards means that even more people will be able to get involved with growing their own."

The orchard sites are Abernethy Primary School, Anagach Woods Trust, Ardgeal Community, Aviemore Primary School, Ballater Community, Blair Atholl Community and Braemar St Andrew's Church.

Also Crathie Primary School, Cromdale Community, Dalwhinnie Community, Deshar Primary School, Glenlivet Community/Drumin Castle, Grantown-on-Spey Primary School and Kingussie Community.

And Laggan Community, Newtonmore Primary School, Strathdon Primary School and Tomintoul Community/Smugglers Hostel.

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