Cormonachan Community Woodlands was awarded “Highly Commended” in Scotland’s Finest Woods Awards 2022

Jacqui Matthews, Mairi McAllan & Dee Locke

Cormonachan Community Woodlands between Lochgoilhead and Carrick Castle was awarded “Highly Commended” in Scotland’s Finest Woods Awards (www.sfwa.co.uk), Community Woodlands Award (Small community woodland group competition) on 24th June 2022 at the Scottish Government’s Pavilion at the Royal Highland Show and Dee Locke, Secretary and Jacqui Matthews, Woodlands Manager, accepted the award and plaque from Màiri McAllan, Minister for Environment and Land Reform, who presented the Awards, said: “Scotland boasts a strong woodland heritage that is admired by many countries and its international reputation for good woodland management is well deserved”.
Please note if you wish to see the video of the presentation click on the link to www.sfwa./co.uk and open the video going to 34.38 to 35.56 where Cormonachan Community Woodlands presentation is shown.
Photo: Julie Broadfoot
Our Plaque

“The Wonderland Adventure” – FREE family event!

“The Wonderland Adventure” – FREE family event!

The White Rabbit is on the run. The Mad Hatter just wants some fun! Wonderland magic is ready for you, Keep your head, whatever you do!
2 pm in Cormonachan Community Woodlands, Loch Goil by Carrick Castle performed by the Walking Theatre Company in association with Argyll Arts Collective in celebration of Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Friday 3rd June 2022.
This FREE event must be booked in advance by obtaining a ticket:-
Free bus from Lochgoilhead car park at 1.30 pm – Book now!
Car sharing only from Carrick Castle to the woodlands car park.
May be an image of 3 people, people standing and text that says "FRIDAY 03 JUNE 2022 @2PM Cormonachan Woodlands A FREE FAMILY SHOW 00.S00 TOURS CORMONACHAN COMMUNITY WOODLANDS AND THE ARGYLL ARTS COLLECTIVE IN CELEBRATION OF THE QUEEN'S PLATINUM JUBILEE PRESENT 'THE WONDERLAND ADVENTURE' BY THE WALKING THEATRE COMPANY THIS IS FREE EVENT DUE TO LIMITED PARKING A BUS WILL LEAVE LOCHGOILHEAD CAR PARK AT 1:30PM Argyll #Bute COUNCIL TO TICKETS VISIT WWW.ARGYLLARTSCOLLECTIVE.COM walking"

“Macbeth the Red” – FREE event for Adults!

“Macbeth the Red” – FREE event for Adults!

Macbeth the Red wants to be King. His Lady love is not quite the thing. Passion and lies, a tale of time gone by. Ring the alarm bells!
7 pm in Cormonachan Community Woodlands, Loch Goil by Carrick Castle performed by the Walking Theatre Company in association with Argyll Arts Collective in celebration of Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Friday 3rd June 2022.
This FREE event must be booked in advance by obtaining a ticket:-
Free bus from Lochgoilhead car park at 6.30 pm – Book now!
Car sharing only from Carrick Castle to the woodlands car park.
May be an image of 3 people and text that says "FRIDAY 03 JUNE 022 PM Cormonachan Woodlands ARGYLL ARTS SHAKESPEARE IN THE WOODS CORMONACHAN COMMUNITY WOODLANDS AND ARGYLL ARTS COLLECTIVE IN CELEBRATION OF THE QUEEN'S PLATINUM JUBILEE PRESENT 'MACBETH THE RED' BY THE WALKING THEATRE COMPANY THIS IS A FREE EVENT DUE TO LIMITED PARKINGA BUS WILL LEAVE FROM LOCHGOILHEAD CAR PARK 6:30PM Argyll Bute COUNCIL TO PRE-BOOK TICKETS VISIT WWW.ARGYLLARTSCOLLECTIVE.COM"

Two FREE events in Cormonachan Community Woodlands on 3rd June 2022

Two FREE events to celebrate HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
on Friday 3rd June 2022

The Wonderland Adventure

Book here:- https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-wonderland-adventure-by-the-walking-theatre-company-free-family-show-tickets-319749016917

 

Macbeth the Red

Book here:-  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/macbeth-the-red-by-the-walking-theatre-company-tickets-319782105887

Volunteers Day Report of 14th April 2022

Six National Park Volunteers clearing cut down Rhododendron ponticum in the Clach Bhadach path area in the north of Cormonachan Community Woodlands.

Under the team leadership of Jacqui Matthews, Cormonachan Community Woodlands, Woodlands Manager, she led nine volunteers (3 local and 6 National Park volunteers) on Thursday 14th April 2022 between 10 am and 4 pm clearing the already cut down Rhododendron ponticum from the old tunnel between the north road entrance and the Clach Bhadach area lower path and stacking these branches to an open area ready for burning during the summer. In the afternoon, the National Park volunteers helped Jacqui move the six ‘Wee People’ sculptures from being on their own to being in a group just north of the ‘Have a Go Stones’ and ‘Labyrinth’ area on the top path. It was a fun job to do and it was reported that the day was enjoyed by all. Thank you to all these volunteers, it makes such a difference to have help to look after the maintenance of the woodlands and to improve the walks for our visitors.

The National Park volunteers setting up the new site for the six ‘Wee People’ to be in a group together.

The National Park volunteers and Jacqui (right) with the ‘Wee People’…

The six ‘Wee People’ grouped together as hopeful volunteers!

Dunoon Observer 25th March 2022

The Dunoon Observer 25/03/2022
This is just to report that Crowdfunding did not work for this type of appeal. Cormonachan Community Woodlands had already raised £18,400 locally before we tried to use the Crowdfunder system.
Now that this Crowdfunder appeal has closed, we have raised a further £1,020 plus £245 in gift aid from 10 supporters and a further £119 direct, making £19,814 added to the ‘Upper Cormonachan Heritage Paths Project’ in donations.
As we have been offered £106,879 from NatureScot through the Agri-Environmental Climate Scheme for Improving Public Access, we have now an application submitted for the balance of the pathways construction cost of £253,146 with the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
If this is successful and we’ll know by June 2022, the work will commence on 1st September and be completed by 31st December 2022.
We have huge support for the project from Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park, Argyll & Bute Council’s Economic Dept. and 28 letters of support from politicians, community organisations, local businesses, many other organisations and of course, our local and associate members.
We would like to thank everyone who has supported this project so far and for future supporters, as we still welcome new support…
When the project has been completed there will be access to the new pathways from the existing paths at the Contemplation Shelter, from the Forest Road above the woodlands and from a new car park below Cormonachan Falls and the Medieval Settlement. There will also be five bridges and four view points giving panoramic views over the waterfalls and Loch Goil.

Reforesting Scotland in Cormonachan Community Woodlands

Just published in the Journal of ‘Reforesting Scotland’ – Spring/Summer 2022 edition on pages 22 & 23 there is an article on ‘A rainforest blessing: finding common ground’
Global solidarity in Cormonachan Community Woodlands.
We now have to wait for another film called ‘The Ghost Rainforest’ to be screened sometime in the near future that includes Cormonachan Community Woodlands.
We hope you enjoyed watching ‘Loggerheads’ Episode 5. If you missed it you can still watch it on BBC iPLAYER for the next year…

‘Loggerheads’ BBC Scotland Channel – Series 1 (6 x 30 minutes) commencing 8.30 pm on Thursday 17th February 2022…

‘Loggerheads’ BBC Scotland Channel – Series 1 (6 x 30 minutes) commencing 8.30 pm on 17th February 2022…
Max, the Logger Horse working with the Loggerheads Teams
Are you ready for some blood, sweat and sawdust? In this series two teams of charismatic wood workers go deep into the forests of Scotland on a mission. They must each crop down a sustainable tree and use it to create a lavish woodwork project for a local community. Going up against each other, they then have 24 hours to complete the best project. It could be stargazing tower, a playful climbing frame or a unique art of art. Which rough handed, yet big hearted team will meet the best brief?
At the same time each week for six weeks you will be able to watch the teams work in different forest and woodlands areas of Scotland.
Cormonachan Community Woodlands features in the whole of episode five on Thursday 17th March 2022. Put a note in your dairy to watch ‘Loggerheads’, it is a fun series of programmes hosted by Farmer Jim! It will also be available on BBC iPlayer.

Don’t forget to support our funding appeal for the Upper Cormonachan Heritage Paths Project by visiting:-

Enjoy the ‘Loggerheads’ series especially the one in Cormonachan Community Woodlands on Thursday 17th March at 8.30 pm.

Count us in for community win

News from the Scottish Rural Network
https://www.ruralnetwork.scot/news-and-events

Person with arms outstretched in waterfall in woods
Cormonachan Falls
Lisa Paton

Congratulations to Cormonachan Community Woodlands Ltd – the first group to successfully complete their project funded by the Rural Communities ‘Ideas into Action’ (RCIIA) Fund.

The £1.8m of funding is part of the Scottish Government’s commitment to trial new and innovative approaches to community-led local development (CLLD) with 120 not-for-profit community groups successful in securing funding.

Cormonachan Community Woodlands on Loch Goil’s western side between Lochgoilhead and Carrick Castle in Argyll is an area of Ancient Semi Natural Woodlands, part of the Scottish Rain Forest and home to red squirrels and pine martens. The charity behind the woodlands received funding to install a second People Counter for the off-road access and – already in place – the group intend to use the data gathered to help with event planning and future development of the site.

The first People Counter in the main car park entrance was installed in October 2020 and, in the first full year of recording visitor numbers, almost 10,000 visitors used that entrance. This was a surprise to the group – previous estimates had put the numbers in the region of 4,000. This information is now being used to help with planning and future fund-raising.

Dee Locke, from Cormonachan Community Woodlands, says the second counter will be of great benefit:

“The second access off the road at Clach Bhadach has been even more unknown so we asked local hospitality businesses (guest houses, B&Bs & the nearby cafe) where they thought their visitors entered the woodlands. Apparently, many do just walk to the woodlands and use this small first entrance so we will have to wait a year for the yearly total but we will have the monthly totals recorded with immediate effect.

Knowing the numbers of visitors to our woodlands on a daily and monthly basis is extremely helpful in planning events as we hold Woodlands Artworks and Sculptures events each autumn, Walking Theatre events earlier in the year with occasional Open Days. We have a Red Squirrel Hide in the woodlands to watch our red squirrels and our Contemplation Shelter with an astounding view over Loch Goil.

This last year we had the indigenous Amazonians attending COP 26 visit and plant an oak tree to commemorate their visit with 100 press and various organisations attend the event. We also had the BBC Scotland’s episode of ‘Loggerheads’ filmed in the woodlands [the series starts 17 February at 8.30pm and on BBC iPlayer].”

As a charity run 100% by volunteers, the group relies on donations and grants to fund projects and keep all events and access to the woodlands free year round. Having the data to demonstrate just how well-used these stunning woodlands are will help with their future ambitions.

At present, the group are trying to raise funds for a major project: the ‘Upper Cormonachan Heritage Paths Project’ will extend the path network from 2.5km to 4km and open access to the Medieval Settlement and the beautiful Cormonachan Falls. Costing £250,000 the group have so far raised half of this and are now looking for crowd funding for the other half – every donation will help.

We wish the Cormonachan Community Woodlands all the best with their future plans. It’s great to see that the RCIIA funding is helping put their ambitious ideas into action for the benefit of the community. If you want to find out more, or get involved as a volunteer or to take part in an event, visit their website.

Funding Appeal – https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/upper-cormonachan-heritage-paths-project – Please support us – Thank you.

Fundraising Appeal…

The ”Upper Cormonachan Heritage Paths Project.”

Please help to support our request to raise the other half of the funding required to construct this exciting Upper Cormonachan Heritage Paths Project. Please follow the below link to find out more – we need your help… Thank you!

https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/upper-cormonachan-heritage-paths-project