Growing Spaces Nesting

CDCN recently secured a total of £97,596.59 from the Scottish Government’s Islands Programme and Highlands and Islands Enterprise to develop a community growing project on CDCN’s land at the Aald Skül, South Nesting. This will include the provision of several Polycrubs, a sizeable allotment area for outdoor growing, and a small community park with trees and other features. Both the Polycrubs and allotments will be available for rent to community members. Planning permission was obtained for the above project in March 2022.

Through community engagement in 2021 and 2022, CDCN identified local demand for a community growing space, featuring options for shared, publicly accessible outdoor and undercover growing to allow the production of fruit and vegetables. Key reasons for this demand stems from limited or no growing space for some community households (notably in the Stendaal housing scheme 0.3 miles away), lack of regular access to fresh produce, and a perceived lack of activities associated for growing within the community. CDCN therefore explored this option in detail to understand and ensure the feasibility and long-term sustainability of such a project, the likely positive outcomes, and the specific facilities required to maximise the benefit to the community.

CDCN believes that this project aligns well with a need for the development of transformational and critical infrastructure based on a local priority, focussing on increasing community empowerment and resilience, and promoting sustainable socio-economic and environmental growth in Shetland - and is an example of working to achieve the Scottish Government’s Net Zero Ambitions.

This project will therefore include the physical delivery of the following:

  1. 1 x large Polycrub (12m x 5m): For shared undercover community growing (i.e. Nesting Growers Group). Includes groundworks.
  2. 4 x medium Polycrubs (6m x 4m each): For private undercover community growing (i.e. rented by community members with limited or no current growing space). Includes groundworks.
  3. Allotment area: For shared and private outdoor community growing.
  4. 1,000+ trees: Planting native and non-native trees to screen the above facilities and to allow the creation of a small community park next to the growing space.
  5. Access paths + park features (1 x bird hide, 1 x picnic table, 1 x park bench, area signs).
  6. Windbreaks + Stock fencing: To protect and maintain the above project developments.

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