Braemar Community Limited is a community-led Scottish Charity (SC038573) and Company Limited by Guarantee (SC276254) that works to achieve the sustainable economic, environmental and social development of the community of Braemar. Formed in 2004, it has gained a strong track record in the development and delivery of amenity and capital projects around the village including:
· The management and development of Braemar Castle
· Provision of affordable housing
· Restoration of the Queen Mother’s cruck framed cottage with hingin’ lum at Auchtavan
· Construction of footpaths and bridges to extend pedestrian access routes
· The community garden, play park and nature trail
· St Margaret’s Performance Arts and Heritage Centre
· Staging the Braemar Mountain Festival
· Initial feasibility study for the 100kW Corriemulzie hydro scheme, now operated by Braemar Community Hydro Ltd and generating income
Membership of BCL is open to all residents of Braemar and any organisation within the area. It currently has 256 members (of a village population of 500); members are encouraged to suggest projects and to take a lead role in steering them. The organisation is governed by a board of directors who are elected by the members. Together they bring a range of valuable skills including estate management, accountancy, broadcasting and communications, project management, tourism and arts education.
BCL works closely with the team behind the Braemar Community Website which brings together a calendar of events as well as a directory of information, organisations, services and businesses, all of which help to make Braemar such a vibrant, creative and supportive village.
Simon Blackett – Chair
After a career in the Armed Forces, Simon trained as a chartered surveyor and from 1993 was resident factor (Chief Executive) to Invercauld Estate, Braemar, retiring in 2016. A founding director of Braemar Community Limited, he has been involved in the management of the castle for over 20 years and was part of the group that took the Castle into community control in 2007. Simon is also the key lead in the Housing and Woodland projects.
Doreen Wood – Vice-Chair
Doreen’s background is in broadcasting, making radio programmes for the BBC. She became involved with Braemar Community Limited in 2006 just as the community took over the management of Braemar Castle. Involved in developing all aspects of the Castle operation, her experience in communications has been useful in creating the Castle narrative, recruiting volunteers and publicising other BCL projects.
David Chandler – Treasurer
Dave is a Chartered Accountant, formerly a senior partner in accountants Touche Ross & Co in Aberdeen before retiring to Braemar in 2010. As well as being responsible for the finances of BCL and its various projects, Dave is involved in the day-to day financial operation of the Castle and is a Trustee of St Margaret’s Trust SCIO. Appointed 2011.
A retired Company Director who moved to Braemar in 2013. Worked in a number of engineering companies including shipbuilding, fabrication, construction and offshore services.An active triathlete from the early days of the sport and heavily involved in the administration and organisation of multi-sport events at club and international level. Started up the Braemar Mens Shed in 2017 and joined the BCL board in 2018.
Rhi has significant experience of managing small to medium businesses spanning hospitality, education and music. She has lived in Braemar since 2013 and helped initiate the successful Braemar Mountain Festival. A strong advocate of the value of arts education and community volunteering. Board member of Woodend Barn in Banchory. Appointed 2014 .
Andrew’s first career was in hotel management, rising to become Swallow Hotels youngest ever Hotel Manager. More recently he’s been a “weel kent” face in the North East as an eminent academic tourism expert. But he’s no stuffy academic, he’s hands on with the Portsoy Traditional Boat Festival, the Aberdeen City and Shire Hotel Assocation, and Grampian Transport Museum. Yes, he writes and talks on tourism policy and theory, however, his best writing is as a motoring journalist. Andrew is proud to be part of BCL since 2021.
Christine moved to Braemar in 2018 and joined the BCL Board in 2021. Currently working in the Oil and Gas industry, she has a background in project and change management.
BCL Annual General Meeting Minutes
Braemar Community Limited is working to achieve the sustainable, economic, environmental and social development of the community of Braemar.
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