South of Scotland MSP Chic Brodie visited Annandale Estates on Monday (14 November) to learn more about the estates’ contribution to the local economy through rural tourism and a new community project.
The Scottish Parliament Economy Energy Enterprise and Tourism Committee member was given an insight into the workings of Annandale Estates led by owner Lord David Johnstone. Discussions focused on a new forestry road designed to take timber lorries away from local villages and a new community hall project for which the estate is providing the land free of charge. Mr Brodie was then told more about the estates’ newly refurbished holiday cottages and the River Annan Fishery RASSP project which are just two the methods in place to attract business through diversification of land use. The South of Scotland MSP also toured the rural property for rent and met with a new entrant tenant farmer who is building a modern robotic dairy in conjunction with the Scotland Rural Development Programme.
Chic Brodie MSP commented:
“I welcomed the opportunity to visit Annandale Estates and Raehills House and learn more about its key activities and projects. Annandale Estates is an important contributor to the local economy through its imaginative commercial and leisure activities as well as the current farming and community schemes it has in place which support not only the estate but the rural economy of this area as a whole. I was glad to discover that lots of other plans are already taking shape to ensure the future flow of custom through the estate as well. The provision of space for a new community hall and the continuing investment in rural tourism through shooting and fishing are particularly commendable.”
David Johnstone commented:
“We’re delighted that one of our regional MSPs has taken the time to tour Annandale Estates. We appreciated having the opportunity to discuss important rural matters with him through face to face engagement, and hope that this visit has provided Mr Brodie with a real insight to the range of activities the estates takes part in and how they contribute to the local community and economy.”