Trust Strategy & Partnerships
After an initial period devoted to the renovation of the buildings in the Trust’s care, a consultation process with the local community in 1995 resulted in a wider development plan. The four interlocking themes are reflected in the Trust’s constitution. The Trust acts as the caretaker of Applecross Estate, managing the land to ensure future generations can continue to enjoy it.
- the preservation of the estate for public benefit
- the promotion of environmental protection or improvement of the amenities of the estate for public benefit
- facilitating and encouraging access to and appreciation of the estate
- facilitating and encouraging activities on the estate aimed at advancing education, arts, heritage, culture and science
The Applecross Trust works to maintain the unique and historic character of the Estate in a sustainable context. To date, this has meant extensive renovation of historic properties, the restoration of key religious buildings in Applecross, and work to conserve and rebuild the drystane dykes that form part of the traditional landscape. As well as conserving the buildings and dykes around the estate, the Trust has worked to improve access and promote understanding of the local heritage. It has installed interpretation panels in various locations to add context to sites of special interest. The Applecross Landscape Partnership Scheme (ALPS) was formed in 2010 as a partnership of various local groups including the Applecross Trust to carry out five interlinked programmes of projects. The ALPS website contains detailed information about the built heritage work that has been carried out on the peninsula, or you can read more about the Trust’s work in this area in the Trust Activities section.
Conservation & Environment
The Trust aims to promote the environmental protection of the Estate for public benefit. This includes a major joint initiative with the north coast crofters called the North Applecross Woodlands project. Since 1994, we have provided pensioners living within the Estate with firewood and engaged in whole estate biodiversity programmes. The Trust updated its Long Term Forest plan in 2010, making the decision to replace conifer plantations with native woodlands. In 2015 the Trust extended its commitment to sustainable deer management with an extensive review of the area’s Deer management Plan. During winter 2013/2014, the Trust felled around 1,000 tonnes of timber after an outbreak of phytopthera ramorum was discovered in the larch plantation near Applecross House. Since then, much of the timber has been milled on site to produce both firewood and building material for local use.
Facilitating and encouraging access and appreciation of the Estate is a major area of work. We’ve upgraded existing walking paths and provided new ones to create a 35km network of tracks. Walk leaflets have been designed and upgraded to include the new paths. We have ongoing partnerships with the Mountain Bothy Association and the Venture Trust, and a £2 million programme of 40 projects has been match funded and delivered with local partners through the Applecross Landscape Partnership Scheme.
The Applecross Trust is committed to facilitating and encouraging activities for the advancement of education, arts, heritage, culture and science, and for advancing social welfare. Over the past years we have donated to the RNLI and Lochcarron Shinty Team. We supply locals with wood fuel and in 2015, we provided the Applecross Community Company (ACC) – a local initiative focusing on community development and renewable energies - with 300 tonnes of timber. Here are a few examples of the many facets of community development:
- The Trust has contributed £5,000 towards ACC’s initiative for community petrol pumps, and provided land for a community Hydro-Electric Scheme.
- It works towards facilitation of affordable housing at Applecross, specifically to be let to local residents, with over £300,000 invested in renovations since 2010.
- The Trust helped to restore the old Walled Garden at Applecross House to establish the successful restaurant now on site, and has helped many other restoration projects.
- Wider initiatives include The Applecross Trust/Mackinnon-Macneill Trust scholarship, for a young person living on the peninsula studying for a career relevant to local job opportunities.
The Applecross community is important to The Trust. There are a number of properties throughout the Applecross Estate that are reserved for community rental. Many of these properties have been refurbished over the last ten years, are all maintained by Trust staff, and many at a capped rate. The Applecross Trust has produced a Housing Policy, which is reviewed every three years. It is designed to help those applying for a Trust property to understand the priorities, and the criteria on which decisions are made. You can find this housing policy here.
The Applecross Trust works with local organisations and businesses where possible. The Applecross peninsula has an abundance of people passionate about the area, helping to build a growing economy that draws on the natural resources of the landscape. Visit our links page for a list of those businesses.