Profiles/ Derick Forbes, Callendar Estate, Falkirk

Derick Forbes, Callendar Estate, Falkirk

Callendar Estate has been a member of the Scottish Land & Estates (formerly the SRPBA) for over 20 years. The estate values Scottish Land & Estates’ efforts to promote the relevance of modern day rural, land-based businesses. They feel it is important that the Government and the wider public are aware of the positive contribution those who manage Scotland’s countryside are making to the development of a sustainable future

Integrating leisure and tourism with other land uses

Callendar Estate south of Falkirk is a modern estate with traditional values which aims to make a positive contribution to the local environment and economy.

Estate Chief Executive, Derick Forbes, wants it to be managed as a modern rural enterprise which balances the needs of farm tenants, the public, timber production and conservation. Callendar Estate has….:
  • 20 mixed use farms let to farming families
  • 1500 acres of actively managed forestry producing regular tonnages of timber as well as providing the landscape setting for much of the Falkirk area.
  • Set up a biomass supply business to respond to the growing demand for renewable energy.
  • Created a 67 km network of paths for cycling, horse riding and walking.
  • Encouraged the development of recreational businesses including a countryside activity centre based around off road cycling
  • Worked in partnership with Falkirk Council in a number of strategic areas, including economic development, access and biodiversity.
  • Engaged with local communities to address issues of concern such anti-social behaviour and access to well managed green spaces.

Encouraging sustainability

Derick says: “We are keen to encourage farm tenants to look at leisure or tourism based enterprises like on-farm livery facilities which use the extensive network of paths and tracks. What is good for our tenants is good for the sustainability of the Estate.”

In 2008 the Estate established a biomass business converting low grade timber into wood chip for heat production. The business currently supplies Carstairs State Hospital with their wood fuel requirements. About 2000 tonnes of woodchip are produced annually, generating 2300 MW/h of heat.

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