Skye business facilities plan gets funding boost

Nicola Sturgeon unveiled the funding boost. Picture: PA
Nicola Sturgeon unveiled the funding boost. Picture: PA
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PLANS to develop new business facilities on Skye – supporting up to 80 new jobs – has been handed a £1.9million funding boost announced by Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

• Up to 80 new jobs will be created by the development

• Work is due to be completed on the project by the start of 2015

• Sabhal Mòr Ostaig - The National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture - celebrates its 40th anniversary this year

The National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture - Sabhal Mòr Ostaig – is to develop a 1,050m2 building which will provide space for up to 20 new businesses and offer accommodation for 20 staff at its Kilbeg Village site.

The development will support up to 60 new jobs in the construction sector including six youth apprenticeships and more than 20 full time positions within the new development.

Construction work will get underway to develop the £6.1 million project which is due to complete at the beginning of 2015.

The work is a central part of a long term project to build a new conference centre, community sport facility and mixed tenure housing for the people of Skye.

Economic growth

Speaking at a European Structural Funds event at Glasgow Caledonian University, Ms Sturgeon said: “Investment in projects like the Sabhal Mòr Ostaig on Skye is absolutely key for stimulating economic growth throughout Scotland.

“In these tough economic times it is vital that we support opportunities that help create new jobs and apprenticeship places while offering assistance to develop and improve our rural communities.

“This new building, which is due for completion in 2015, will provide much needed new facilities for the people of Skye, which will boost its reputation on a national level and help to attract more investment to the area.

New village

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig Chairman Sheriff Roddy John MacLeod said: “The Board of Directors is delighted that Sabhal Mòr is now in a position to take this exciting and visionary project forward.

“It is not every day that an institution gets the opportunity to pursue such an iconic development which will not only ‘future-proof’ Sabhal Mòr Ostaig’s own estate development needs but will also, in partnership with the local community, create the first new village to be built on the island in more than 100 years.

“The project is taking place at a significant juncture in Sabhal Mòr Ostaig’s history as the first sod will be cut in 2013, the year in which we celebrate our 40th Anniversary.

“That coincidence is so appropriate since the new village will, in many ways, be an expression of the aims and aspirations of Sir Iain Noble and his founding Trustees, for the Gaelic language to be the stimulus for the economic and social development of the area.”