Highland 2007 announces award offers of up to £659,362 for Regional Events and Community Programme Grants (19/12/05)

Six events have been offered funding totalling up to £128,150 through the first round of the Highland 2007 Regional Events Programme. In addition, 50 Highland 2007 Community Programme grants have been awarded, totalling £531,212, for capital and revenue events and projects celebrating Highland 2007.

The Highland 2007 Regional Events Programme was created to support events attracting participants and spectators, as well as significant media interest, to the Highlands from outwith the area. A full list of grants offered is attached. Provided by EventScotland, the Regional Events Programme package of £500,000 is targeted to assist existing and new events in the Highlands achieve their potential in line with the aims of Highland 2007. The second and final closing date for applications to the Highland 2007 Regional Events Programme is 28 April 2006.

Culture Minister Patricia Ferguson said: "Highland 2007 will be a vibrant, world class showcase for the area’s rich cultural heritage. This cash injection will help community groups throughout the Highlands plan events, which will lead to an explosion of cultural activity before, during and after Highland 2007."

David Williams of EventScotland said: "This first round of the Highland 2007 Regional Events Programme has attracted much interest and I am pleased six events have been offered support through the programme. I would encourage all event organisers thinking of making an application for the second and final round of the Regional Events Programme to get in touch with Highland 2007 as soon as possible."

The Highland 2007 Community Programme offers grant support to not-for-profit organisations, enabling communities to design and plan their own celebrations for 2007. With a total value of £4.12million for the Highlands and Islands, the community grants aim to encourage as many people as possible throughout the area to take part in the year Scotland celebrates Highland culture.

Alison Magee, Chair of Highland 2007, said: "All the events and projects supported by Community and Regional Events grants will feature in the overall programme for Highland 2007. The wide variety of projects funded will contribute to the success of Highland 2007 by encouraging people to visit the Highlands during 2007 and in years to come."

For more information contact Alison Bell at Highland 2007 on 01463 702007or 07733 123037

Editor’s notes

Regional Events Programme funding has been offered to the following events:

* Celtic Film & TV Festival (Portree, Skye; 28–30 March 2007) Frances Hendron Tel: 0141 302 1737
* Interpret Scotland (Aviemore, 1– 3 October 2007) Bill Taylor Tel: 01463 621996
* GoNorth (Inverness; 1– 10 June 2007) Shaun Arnold Tel: 07974 245348
* Moray Firth Flotilla (Moray Firth Coast; 23 June – 1 July 2007) Sinclair Young Tel: 01349 877858
* Big Willow Project (Brahan Estate, Dingwall; May 2007 (t.b.c.) Pamela Conacher Tel: 01687 470320
* Tryathlon (Inverness; June 2007) Charlie Forbes Tel: 01463 232262

Community Programme applications within Highland Council boundaries are managed through each local Highland Council Area Community Learning and Leisure Manager; for the five other councils within the HIE area, the Community Programme is managed by the relevant local enterprise company.

Highland 2007, the year Scotland celebrates Highland culture, aims to promote the Highlands as a great place to live and to visit through showcasing the unique and special nature of Highland culture past, present and future.  The project is a partnership between three principal funding agencies: The Highland Council, The Scottish Executive, and Highlands and Islands Enterprise.  The year long celebration of Highland culture in 2007 will incorporate an exciting range of international, regional and community events, as well as capital projects and cultural activities specifically for young people.  See www.highland2007.com for full details.

Major events already confirmed as part of the programme include The Highland Quest; Fonn ‘s Duthchas, a national exhibition; the re-interpretation of Culloden Battlefield; the 6 Cities Festival of Design; the World Championship Highland Games; European Pipe Band Championships; World Mountain Biking Championships; 100th Camanachd Cup Final; International Tattoo; The Royal National Mod; Blas – a traditional music festival; the Scottish Wheelchair Curling Championships; the Scottish 6 Day International Orienteering Championships and Go North.

The Highland 2007 Regional Events Programme is the route for EventScotland support of ‘regional’ events that take place within the Highland Council boundary area during 2007. Round 1 of this programme has already passed. The deadline for the final round is April 28 2006. EventScotland has contributed £500,000 to support this fund. The purpose is to assist existing and new events in the Highlands achieve their potential in line with the aims of Highland 2007. This funding package is a major investment for one region and equals the fund available to the rest of the country through the core Regional Events Programme. All enquiries are dealt with by the Highland 2007 team. Full details at www.highland2007.com

EventScotland is the national organisation for sports and cultural events. A joint venture between the Scottish Executive and VisitScotland, it was created to deliver the Major Events Strategy published by the Scottish Executive in November 2002. The strategy is designed to maximise the benefits of existing events, to attract new events, to showcase Scotland's assets and to encourage more people to visit Scotland to experience at first hand major sporting, cultural and arts events being staged in the country. www.eventscotland.org

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