Aviemore and Glenmore Community Trust (AGCT) have today Thursday 18th April, welcomed a funding package of over £90,000 from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) to support their development of detailed plans for community ownership of the Cairngorm Mountain Ski Resort, one of Scotland’s leading visitor attractions and outdoor adventure playgrounds. The funding will support two roles initially, a Project Manager and Administrative Officer based locally, with further scope to grow the team.
The funding boost for the trust comes on the back of extensive coordination and discussions with HIE following the previous operator, Cairngorm Mountain Limited, entering administration at the end of 2018.
"Out of adversity comes opportunity, the current situation at Cairngorm represents a unique opportunity to create something very special."
On 8th February 2019 Cameron McNeish published an article entitled “The Long Walk-in"[i], referencing the Aviemore and Glenmore Community Trust and raising many questions about the viability and future direction of Cairngorm Mountain as a ski resort and summer attraction. The trust welcomes debate over the future of the estate, and we felt it necessary to respond to some of Cameron's points.
So what's next? Cairngorm has gone bust twice now in 10 years, clearly it's time for a new direction. At this point we believe HIE must take Cairngorm Mountain back into their ownership as soon as possible , it's essential that we protect jobs and have the ski centre up and running for this season. We would then like to see a transition to community ownership of the operating company within the next couple of years. This is not simple, it's essential that the community feels ownership, but equally that the operating company can act independently day to day, there are also large working capital requirements to enable the business to run effectively. AGCT has been working hard to address these issues and we hope now to work cooperatively with HIE, stakeholders and staff to create a business model that will allow us all to move forward positively.
The community groups on the HIE funicular response team are holding a Q&A session open to all, starting at 7pm on the 6th December in the Pereguine Suite at Macdonald Aviemore Resort. The purpose of the evening is to answer questions on the current status of the hill, the response team strategy, and to listen to your views. If you would like to attend, please sign up with the link below, it helps us to plan seating etc.
Thanks for your support and we look forward to seeing you there.
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