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FWAG Scotland in crisis talks over funding

The Farming & Wildlife Advisory Group (FWAG) Scotland could go into administration unless budget problems are resolved, it emerged on 14 January.

FWAG Scotland, which provides advice and expertise on the environment and wildlife to landowners, recently held talks with Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) in Perth to discuss its funding crisis.

But Jim Hume MSP, the Liberal Democrat spokesman for rural affairs, has said the end of FWAG Scotland is approaching fast, with the loss of 33 jobs, unless a shortfall of £100,000 in its annual budget is found.

FWAG Scotland had an initial grant of £340,000 for its current financial year, but this was reduced to £240,000 in November last year.

According to Mr Hume, this 30% reduction in funding poses a real threat to the organisation and the services it provides.

He described it as “hugely important” to landowners: “I have written to Cabinet secretary Richard Lochhead demanding that he act on this as a matter of urgency. Nigel Miller, the chairman of FWAG Scotland, has made several attempts to bring this funding crisis to the attention of the Scottish Government and has yet to receive any direct response.”

The rest of this article appears in 22 January issue of Shooting Times.

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