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(c) Iain Sarjeant and supplied through Sutherland Partnership

Welcome to the new Highland LEADER Programme website

Welcome to the new Highland LEADER Programme website

Introduction

The Highland LEADER Shadow Local Action Group (LAG) is currently working towards finalising a Local Development Strategy (LDS) for the new LEADER Programme 2014-2020 which will determine the kinds of projects which can be supported through this funding during the coming time period.

The Highland LEADER Programme is hoping to open for new projects during summer 2015.

LEADER supports community owned actions with investment from the European Union. It is part of the European Rural Development Programme which is a European investment programme for rural development in Scotland that links local action with European and Scottish Government priorities.

The aim of LEADER is to increase the capacity of local rural community and business networks to build knowledge and skills and encourage innovation and co-operation to tackle local development objectives.

The whole of Highland with the exception of Inverness city is eligible for LEADER funding.

The LDS themes and outcomes agreed will determine the investment priorities for the LAG in your area under the new programme funding.

SRDP Roadshow Update - February 2015

Highland LEADER 2014-2020

A Local Development Strategy was submitted to the Scottish Government in late 2014 and assessed by an external panel in November/December 2014. Initial feedback on the strategy has been positive; however, formal approval is pending a number of refinements/clarifications. As such, there is currently no approved strategy or structure in place for the Highland LEADER Programme 2014-2020 and no allocation has been made from the Scottish Government. The scale of the programme is therefore not known at this stage. Work is underway to provide the refinements that have been requested and to secure an allocation and further details on the Programme will be available following this.

It is hoped that the LEADER Programme will be open to applicants during Summer 2015. The 2014-2020 LEADER Programme will include a strand of funding for Rural Enterprise, of which there will be a requirement for a percentage to be allocated to farm diversification projects. There is a Scottish Government event in late March, which should provide further details of how this scheme will be delivered and priorities for funding. Once this information is available there will be further sector specific engagement to determine priorities for funding within Highland.

Update January 2015

The Highland Shadow Local Action Group (LAG) submitted the Highland Local Development Strategy to the Scottish Government in October 2015, setting out proposals for the operation of the Highland LEADER and EMFF Programmes from 2014-2020 and the agreed priorities for funding. The strategy was assessed by an external panel during November 2014 and feedback provided in December. In summary the strategy was positively received; however, a number of refinements and clarifications were requested. These will be discussed by the Shadow LAG at their meeting in January with a view to resubmitting the strategy to the Scottish Government as soon as possible. In addition there are a number of points that will require clarification nationally in order to finalise the strategy. Further updates will be given as available.

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