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Comrie Development Trust (CDT)


Facts & Figures

Organisation Name:Comrie Development Trust (CDT)
Individual Name:
Area Served:Comrie and the surrounding rural area (district of Strathearn).
Population:2,000 in village, 3,000 wider area.
Sketch:

Comrie Development Trust, set up in 2006, is a charitable organisation owned and managed by local people living within the boundary of Comrie and District area – Strathearn. The aim of the Development Trust is to promote the sustainable development of the village for the benefit of local people, groups and businesses. In September 2007, the CDT purchased Cultybraggan - a Prisoner of War & Army Training Camp - encompassing 90 acres of land from the Ministry of Defence, for the benefit of the community.  In addition to the buyout, the Trust has also advanced a range of projects include the Carbon Challenge project, a Youth Drama Group, a Community Cinema Club, the on-going development of a skateboarding / bike park, renewable energy projects, waste and transport related activities, music events, the creation of a Community Orchard and plans for a Community Woodland.

Legal Form:

Company Limited by guarantee with Charitable Status

Volunteers:Average 50
People Benefitting:3000
Staff:5 (4 part time, 1 full time)
Turnover:?156,438 (April 2013 March 2014)
Earned Income:

£100,678 (April 2013 – March 2014)

Assets:

Own the Cultybraggan PoW & Army Training Camp along with 90 acres of land. Also, Drummond Street Office in Comrie.

£1,062,341 (Cultybraggan Camp, infrastructure / refurbishment work, allotments, orchard and cargo trikes)

Value of assets: Net Assets: ?527,517

Roots & Links

Origins:

Comrie Development Trust, set up in 2006, is a charitable organisation owned and managed by local people living within the boundary of Comrie and district area – Strathearn.

In May 2005 local individuals attended an exceptional presentation in the village by the Westray Development Trust from Orkney. Those present were inspired by what could be achieved by a local community with an aim to secure the long-term health and vitality of their area and the idea for a development trust grew. Over the next few months, the Comrie Development Group worked with local people to explore the potential for a Trust and in October 2005 a major community meeting was held. The outcome identified a significantly high number of locals in favour of the project and subsequently, the Comrie Development Trust was established. 

The aim of the Development Trust is to promote the sustainable development of the village for the benefit of local people, groups and businesses.

Governance:

Our Board consists of up to 12 voluntary positions elected by the membership with up to three co-opted positions to attract particular skills. Our members are the lifeblood of our Trust and support us in all sorts of ways – we have over 700.  Currently there are 580 full members and 123 associate members of the Trust. There are also 6 Working Groups of the Trust such as Comrie Heritage Group and Comrie Orchard Group who lead projects identified and prioritised by the community.

Community Links:

Comrie is a highly motivated community with at least 56 local organisations active in the village. The Trust emphasises the importance of working in partnership with these groups while developing new ideas and projects. The Trust has close links with numerous local businesses and organisations as well as other communities addressing similar issues.

External Links:

Comrie Development Trust has strong links to Perth & Kinross Council, Scottish Enterprise, Historic Scotland and the Scottish Government as well as a range of funders and financial institutions including The Tudor Trust, Gannochy Trust, Big Lottery, LEADER and Triodos Bank.

Activities

Physical Hub:

CDT has an established office in the village where members of the community can drop-in, ask questions and receive information & advice about all Trust projects. Cultybraggan Camp is also used as a physical hub for CDT operations/events but also by the local community.

Builds Local Capacity:

Local capacity is built through active involvement on the board and through our working groups

Delivers Services:

Buying and developing Cultybraggan Camp has dominated the first five years of the Trust’s existence.  However, the Trust has also advanced a range of projects that have been crucial to building the success of the Trust.  These include the Carbon Challenge, Youth Drama Group, the establishment of a Community Cinema Club, on-going development of a skateboarding / bike park, renewable energy projects, waste and transport related activities, music events, creation of a Community Orchard and plans for a Community Woodland, Open Days at Cultybraggan Camp, Oral History Group (published Camp 21 booklet), plans for a heritage centre and recreation and sporting facilities and local economic projects to support local businesses.

Develops/Manages Property:

In September 2007, the CDT purchased Cultybraggan - a Prisoner of War & Army Training Camp - encompassing 90 acres of land from the Ministry of Defence, for the benefit of the community.  This historic and major community buyout of land was undertaken through the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.  CDT created a Business Plan to develop Cultybraggan for optimum community use. The community turnout for the ballot under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 was 72% with 97% of those in favour of purchasing the Camp.  This is the most conclusive ballot in Scotland to date.  Funding for the £350,000 purchase prices was obtained from the Tudor Trust / Triodos Bank, with The Big Lottery fund via HIE and Scottish Enterprise supporting business planning.

 

 Buying and developing Cultybraggan Camp, on behalf of the community, has dominated the first five years of the Trust’s existence. However, the Trust has also advanced a range of projects that have been crucial to building its success. These include the Carbon Challenge, the establishment of a Community Cinema Club and Youth Drama Group, the on-going development of a skateboarding / bike park, renewable energy projects, waste and transport related activities, music events, creation of a Community Orchard and plans for a Community Woodland. Also open days at Cultybraggan Camp, Oral History Group (published Camp 21 booklet), Hut 1 exhibition centre at Cultybraggan (Comrie Heritage Group), recreation/sporting facility development and economic projects to support local businesses. More recently, the Heritage Group now conduct Heritage Tours of the Camp and have organised and run events throughout the village such as a Tea Dance, a March to the camp & VE Day celebrations.

Other:

The community turnout for the ballot under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 was 72% with 97% of those in favour of purchasing Cultybraggan.  This is the most conclusive ballot in Scotland to date.  Funding for the £350,000 purchase prices was obtained from the Tudor Trust / Triodos Bank, with The Big Lottery fund via HIE and Scottish Enterprise supporting business planning.

Main Achievements:

Main achievements of the Trust include the purchase of Cultybraggan Camp & 90 acres of land for community benefit. The attraction of over £1.7m of investment.  The development of strong partnerships with charities, banks, Government and local groups.  Having an amazing network of volunteers advancing projects from youth drama to renewable energy.  Also the award of over three years’ funding to be one of the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund exemplar communities.

What Next

Biggest Challenge:

Financial sustainability.

Lessons Learned:

Keep listening to the community and keep communicating

Aspirations:

 

We are an organisation determined to take care of our village and rise to the economic, social and environmental challenges of 21st century living.  Our plans and aspirations include continuing the development of Cultybraggan for a range of community uses including – increased local food production, renewable energy, sports and recreation, work/office space for local businesses, commercial development, quality land management and habitat protection, events venue, developing off-road access between the village and the Camp, Heritage operations/tours as well as other projects geared to increase the resilience of the village of Comrie.

 

Contact

Name:Sharon Rice-Jones
Title:CDT Board Member
Address Line 1: 32-34 Drummond Street,Comrie
Address Line 2:Perthshire PH6 2DW
City:
County:
Telephone:01764 670 769
Fax:
Email:cdt@comriedevelopmenttrust.org.uk
Website URL:www.comriedevelopmenttrust.org.uk
District:Perth and Kinross