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DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY PROJECTS TO BENEFIT FROM EURO MONEY

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Dumfries and Galloway is to receive a share of more than£9m of European Structural Funding awarded to projects in ...
Dumfries and Galloway is to receive a share of more than£9m of European Structural Funding awarded to projects in the South of Scotland. Deputy minister for finance and local government, Peter Peacock, made the announcements when he visited four of the successful projects.

The Euro funds are aimed at providing support and advice for new and growing businesses and to assist the local community.

Announcing the awards at Wigtown yesterday, Mr Peacock said:

'I am delighted to announce this funding for Dumfries and Galloway. It will have a very positive impact on the area which has gone through some very difficult times recently. This injection of Euro cash can only be good news for the local communities.

'I am very pleased to award£112,312 to the Wigtown Book Town Company which will finance a strategy to complete Wigtown's transformation into a world class book town. This will have a very positive effect on local businesses and tourism and is a good example of the far-reaching benefits of European Funding.

This was further illustrated at Threave House when Mr Peacock unveiled funding for a number of projects which will bring significant benefits to the wider region.

'I am particularly pleased to announce today that the recovery of Dumfries and Galloway's tourism, post foot and mouth, will receive a significant boost from the award of more than£1.2m of European funds. The money will go to two projects to raise the profile of this outstanding area and highlight the excellent tourism opportunities on offer. Countryside Access is to receive£316,000 to highlight the region as an activity holiday destination and Marketing Dumfries and Galloway will receive£927,000 to raise awareness of the tourism opportunities.

'Threave House and Garden Visitor Centre will itself benefit from£59,556. I am delighted that the funding will allow the House to be upgraded to provide a permanent home to the Maxwelton Collection of Stewarty artefacts, thus providing an excellent all-year visitor experience. The Visitor Centre will also be further improved to provide a 200 seated venue for corporate and other functions.

Visiting Kirkcudbright, Mr Peacock welcomed the award of£762,749 for The South of Scotland Councils of Voluntary Service, saying:

'The funding will allow this partnership of over 800 voluntary and community organisations to make a better contribution to economic regeneration, environmental sustainability and social inclusion.

In Dumfries, the minister unveiled funding of£484,627 to continue the refurbishment of Browne House on the Crichton Campus to provide a Centre for Management, Personal and Professional Development. The building will be the interface between the successful higher education development of the Crichton campus and the business park.

Mr Peacock said:

'I am delighted to award this funding to develop a Centre to meet the demands of small and medium-sized enterprises for training and product development. It will attract inwardinvestment and new employment opportunities and will enable business and individuals across the region to compete more effectively.'

BACKGROUND

The South of Scotland Objective 2 Programme 2000-2006 was approved in principle by the European Commission in November 2000. It is worth Eu70m over the period. The figure includes transitional funds for the Tweeddale area of the Borders which was the only part of the South of Scotland area that lost full status from the previous Objective 5b Programme.

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