Time to honour champions of local life in Lochaber

Scotland’s Towns Partnership chief officer Phil Prentice © Sandy Young Photography.

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People across Lochaber are being urged to make their voices heard to honour the inspirational and innovative work being done to make the region a better place to live.

Nominations are being sought for the Scotland Loves Local Awards, which will see our unsung heroes, including a high street hero, place leader and those leading the charge to tackle climate change receive some much deserved recognition.

Organised by Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP), the awards will celebrate all that is great about towns and neighbourhoods – recognising creativity and commitment towards shaping a sustainable, successful future.

STP chief officer Phil Prentice said: ‘Day in, day out people are working tirelessly to make communities across the Highlands better places to live, improving the lives of those around them.

‘The Scotland Loves Local Awards are a chance to say thank you for all that they do.

‘We need you to help us highlight the people, places and projects making the region cleaner, greener, stronger and fairer whether through design, delivery or sheer determination.’

Scotland Loves Local is spearheaded by STP with the support of the Scottish Government and the campaign is encouraging everyone to strengthen their community by supporting the businesses and people around them. It has backed work across the region.

The award categories are:

•High Street Hero (a business, organisation, constituted charity or social enterprise – including individuals associated with the organisation – which has gone above and beyond to support those around them)
•Place leader
•Climate Town
•Creative Town
•Innovative Town
•Streets and Spaces
•Town Centre Living

Scotland’s community wealth minister, Tom Arthur MSP, is backing the call for award nominations.

‘Over the past year our communities have come together to support each other through the pandemic, from supporting local businesses to helping vulnerable neighbours,’ he said.

‘The Scotland Loves Local Awards importantly recognise those who have gone above and beyond. If you know of a person or organisation that has made a difference, I would urge you to nominate them to receive well deserved recognition.

‘The Scottish Government has committed to a £10 million Scotland Loves Local programme to help revitalise our town centres. As we recover from the pandemic we are pushing forward with an ambitious agenda of economic transformation by building wealth in local communities and delivering greater, greener and fairer prosperity.’

Nominations can be made at www.lovelocal.scot/awards, where full category criteria can also be found. There, you can briefly share the details of your nominee and why you would like to see them recognised.

The closing date for nominations is Friday, September 10 2021. Winners will be announced in a virtual celebration to be broadcast on Thursday, November 25, as the culmination of Scotland’s Towns Conference – this year being staged as an online showcase in a series of events over three days.