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Not even remotely interested in social enterprise?

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The Knoydart Foundation recently hosted a Community Land Unit seminar on social enterprise and we thought it would be a good idea to produce a series of podcasts from the event to give more people a chance to hear what went on. You can listen to (or download) each of the sessions, rx buy viagra but you might need a good broadband connection to make the most of this.


We have done minimal editing to this set of podcasts, so let us know whether we need to 'tighten' things up a bit - the sound quality is a bit variable and some of the recordings have been cut short where there was too much background noise. Still, maybe it will give you a real flavour of being there, without the added calories of all that carrot cake...

Taking the boat from Malliag to InverieDevelopment Manager Angela Williams introduced us to Knoydart and gave an overview of progress in the last ten years since the Knoydarts Foundation successfully took ownership of 16,000 acres of the Knoydart Peninsula.

Click to download in MP3 format (9.46MB)


Download Angela's presentation (this is a PDF file)


Douglas Westwater From Community Enterprise, provided us with some background on social enterprise including different legal structures, and their pros and cons.

Click to download in MP3 format (17.66MB)


Download Douglas' presentation (this is a PDF file)

Adrian Davis From Wild Outdoors took us out and about to inspire some ideas about wildlife tourism and how social enterprises might make the most of the natural environment that they manage.On the beach thinking about Wildlife tours

Click to download in MP3 format (5.28MB)


David Bryan kicked off the second half of the seminar with a session about the Social Enterprise Academy and helped us explore the skills and needs that might be lurking in a community venture. This interactive session was difficult to capture by sound alone, so not all of the recording is available...

Click to download in MP3 format (9.73MB)


Alaistar Nicholson from HIE then had the job of demystifying the virtual world and how the internet can be used as a tool for marketing, as well as some of the pitfalls to avoid. Only part of the audio is available because there was a bit too much noise from boiling kettles in the background...

Click to download in MP3 format (17.31MB)


Download Alaistar's presentation (this is a PDF file)


The delegates in Knoydart  LodgeThen, just when enthusiasm was at its lowest ebb, Tamsin and I subjected the delegates to a session on SCotLaNd website and how community groups might make better use of the network. If you want to contribute ideas, why not post something on the forum.

Click to download in MP3 format (17.72MB)


Thanks are due to the Knoydart Foundation for hosting the seminar and to Knoydart Lodge for the fabulous venue. Not forgetting that the Community Land Unit funded the seminar and contributed to the delegates' costs.


After the seminar, Tamsin and I stayed on and to get more of a feel for the community and what knoydart renewables have been doing (look out for a case study next month). We also wanted to get a better idea of just how remote the Knoydart Peninsula is... So we walked out. And yes, it is pretty remote!

Our walk took us up the glen, past Lochain Dubh-loch and up to the mist laden beallach. We had plenty of time to reflect on the past few days and the past few 'owners' of the peninsula. Lord Brocket's imposing monument stands as a stark reminder of power of the few against the will of the many (and some rather dodgy political sympathies!). It was he who foiled the land raiders in 1948 before breaking up the estate, which eventually ended up in the hands of the community at large.

On the long incline to the beallach we got a sense of the hard manual labour that went into this drove road - the shorter land access to the peninsula - that we followed right through to Kinloch Hourn.

Despite the horror stories of a rat-infested bothy at Barrisdale (it isn't), we spent a chilly but dry night accompanied by the howl of a gale that brought the first major rain of the year. Obviously  the conditions under foot were going to be affected by this downpour, and the burns growled their way to the sea.

The remaining miles to the road-end demonstrated a familiar problem facing remote areas of Scotland - the battle to maintain many miles of drove road against the onslaught of nature. And much like the communities that they link (or once linked) they need constant nurturing to avoid steady decline and erosion. Again, like communities, its harder to find the money to maintain things than to build anew, yet the long term investment is what pays the dividends. So while social enterprise might provide a solution for some aspects of a community, there'll be things that can't pay their way, and maybe we as a society need to make a commitment to support things that have a value but don't generate income.

A long walk out from KnoydartTamsin crosses a burn on the way towards the roadThe bothy at BarrisdaleI lot of work went into building the drove road

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