MSP Joan McAlpine says a £300k windfall from the Crown Estate should help support Nith Inshore Rescue and other coastal community projects in Dumfries and Galloway.
The South Scotland MSP made her call after discovering that the Scottish Government has allocated Dumfries and Galloway Council £309,041.03 of Scottish Crown Estate marine profits. Control of the Crown Estate, which mainly raises money from activities on the shoreline and seabed, passed to Scotland under additional devolution powers following the 2014 independence referendum.
The MSP wrote again this week to Council boss Gavin Stevenson after the Scottish Government published annual allocation figures for 2019-2020 confirming Dumfries and Galloway will receive £309,041.03 from the total net revenue of £7.2 million across Scotland.
Mr Stevenson previously promised Ms McAlpine they would examine the issue when the allocation was announced after she wrote to him highlighting the Crown Estate opportunity.
The MSP had previously taken up the case of independent based inshore and inland water search and rescue charity, Nith Inshore Rescue after touring their Glencaple premises. She commented,
“Nith Inshore Rescue is a volunteer-run lifeboat service serving Upper Solway and the surrounding area, providing a life- line to local people and visitors to the area. It is a great example of a charity run by dedicated and skilled volunteers which sits at the heart of the coastal community. Such a service cannot run on fresh air, and Nithshould be at the front of the queue for assistance from the Scottish Crown Estate marine assets fund.
“Running costs of over £30k per annum could be met from the local authority revenue allocation if Dumfries and Galloway Council agree with me that Nith, like other fantastic local services, must be funded to sustain and develop what they offer to communities.
“Now that Councils have the power to manage how funds are spent, I hope Dumfries and Galloway Council let us all know what plans are in place to directly benefit coastal communities using this money,”
Attached letter to Gavin Stevenson.
Picture features Joan with Nith Inshore Rescue volunteers Robbie Cowan and Gwilym Gibbons