Jobs boost for 300 rural projects in Scotland

Image caption,
A woodland mountain biking area in Grantown-on-Spey was among 300 projects to benefit

Grants worth £35.7m have been awarded to rural projects in Scotland, creating or safeguarding 900 jobs.

The cash was awarded in the latest round of the Scottish government's Rural Priorities scheme.

A ski complex in Newmilns, Ayrshire, and a woodland mountain biking area in Grantown-on-Spey are among 300 projects to benefit.

Since the scheme's launch in 2008, some 4,850 rural projects have received a total of about £378m.

Other enterprises to receive funding included a young farmer's cattle business in Gartocharn, West Dunbartonshire, and a micro-brewery in Cromarty.

The Scottish government said the latest round would safeguard 400 jobs and create 500 new jobs across rural Scotland.

Rural Secretary Richard Lochhead said: "The creation of a further 500 new jobs across the country gives a much-needed boost to local rural communities. This is essential in times of economic uncertainty, when financial challenges become increasingly difficult."

Rural Priorities is a funding mechanism under the Scotland Rural Development Programme, which is designed to develop rural Scotland from 2007 to 2013.

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