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Finalists announced for the Helping It Happen awards

FINALISTS ANNOUNCED FOR HELPING IT HAPPEN AWARDS

Shortlists for seven categories, including The Iver Salvesen Green Business Award

The finalists for the inaugural Helping it Happen awards have now been announced.

Across seven categories, estates, rural businesses and countryside partnerships have been shortlisted for the new awards which are organised by Scottish Land & Estates.

The winners will be announced at a special ceremony in Edinburgh on May 30, and one of the honours being presented will be the Iver Salvesen Green Business Award.

Named in his memory following his untimely passing last year, Iver Salvesen was an active member of Scottish Land & Estates and a participant in the organisation’s South East regional committee. With a passion for eco-building and green energy, Iver enjoyed a wealth of knowledge that he was keen to share with all who cared about our rural sectors.

The shortlist and winner of this award has been chosen by Iver’s family and it will be presented annually as a mark of recognition of his valued contribution.

This year’s finalists are Drimnin Estatein Argyll, Charlesfield Farmsin the Borders and Errichelnear Aberfeldy. The Leys Estate, near Royal Deeside, was also highly commended.

Drimnin’s nomination reflects the outstanding restoration work undertaken on an estate in a very remote location: renewal work which has included the four year restoration of St Columba's Chapel and the addition of a new small distillery, completed in 2017, producing a premium single malt using renewable energy from wood chip harvested on the estate.

At Charlesfield Farms, the estate decided to join the green revolution. The result was a new £10 million anaerobic digestion (AD) plant that produces eco-friendly methane gas from locally grown feedstock, then feeds it directly into the nearby energy grid. The plant in St Boswells in the Borders now generates enough energy to supply up to 4,000 homes, reducing reliance on non-renewable natural gas. The AD site has proved such a success that more local farmers are queuing up to join, the equivalent of five full-time staff are involved in its operation and it is estimated to generate £1.5m per annum for the local economy.

Errichel, meanwhile, has created a haven in highland Perthshire offering excellent holiday accommodation in rooms within the main building, and self-catering holiday cottages. They have built two houses, completed a barn conversion, extended the main house and refurbished three holiday cottages – all whilst proving their green credentials with a district biomass boiler and solar panels.

Finalists across all seven categories are available to view on the Helping it Happen website at www.helpingithappen.co.uk.

David Johnstone, chairman of Scottish Land & Estates, said:“Helping It Happen is an initiative to showcase examples of the positive contributions being made by rural businesses and landowners across Scotland. The launch of the awards is to allow individuals, communities and businesses to have their say on how their local estate or rural business has helped their area to flourish, and the quality and number of nominations made selecting the final shortlists a difficult process for the judges.

“The launch of the Iver Salvesen Green Business Award is particularly special, with Iver having enjoyed such a passion for rural development that was also environmentally sustainable. Iver left a lasting mark on all who he met and we are delighted that this award will recognise both his contribution and the work of Drimnin, Charlesfield and Errichel who have all strived to improve their business whilst ensuring the environment is at the forefront of their considerations.”

 

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