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The Falkirk area scooped four awards at the national planning awards ceremony in November.

Three projects had been shortlisted for the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning.

The Carron Dams Local Nature Reserve – A Dam Fine Place picked up not one but two awards – the award for People’s Choice and the award for Overall Winner.

The Inner Forth Landscape Initiative picked up an award in the Partnership Category and Falkirk Town Centre Townscape Heritage Initiative walked away with an award for the Place Category.

The awards celebrate achievements in planning and are considered ‘one of the Government’s most prestigious awards’.

The criteria used by the independent judging panel included innovation in the project; the impact that the project has had; transferability of the project and the lessons learned from it.

Rhona Geisler, Director of Development Services at Falkirk Council said: “We are delighted that the Falkirk area featured significantly at last month's award ceremony. We had three projects shortlisted and, in gaining the overall prize for quality in planning, walked away with four awards.

“All three projects deserved recognition as they highlight the transformational impact they have had on their communities.  We are extremely grateful for the hard work of our staff and the support of partner organisations that helped to fund and deliver these award winning projects.  

“Finally, we are especially grateful to members of our communities who voted for the Carron Dams project in large numbers.  This innovative project went on to win both the Peoples Vote and the Overall Winner. Clearly this means a lot to our communities and this is the best kind of feedback we can receive as a Council.  This demonstrates our determination to achieve the highest standards in delivering planning projects in our area.”

The Carron Dams project, working with Larbert High School and other partners, has transformed a former industrial site with new paths and interpretive artworks into a “Dam Fine” place for visitors to enjoy a Local Nature Reserve at the heart of Carron, Larbert and Stenhousemuir.

Falkirk THI was a £5.5m programme that ran between 2013 and 2018 where heritage grants were awarded within Falkirk town centre to help preserve and enhance the town centre’s attractive historic environment.

The Inner Forth Landscape Initiative was a £4m partnership programme that between 2014 and 2018 delivered 50+ projects to conserve, enhance and celebrate the natural, built and cultural heritage of the unique landscape at the upper reaches of the Firth of Forth.