A Scottish Government research site formerly leased by the James Hutton Institute has been acquired by Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS).

The 328-ha site – Hartwood Farm, Hartwood, Shotts – includes a range of farm buildings and a mix of ploughable pasture, permanent pasture, rough grazing and farm woodlands.

While this farm is already in the ownership of the Scottish Government it has now been brought under the management portfolio of FLS.

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Carol McGinnes, FLS's Central Region manager, said: “The farm links two of the forests we already look after in the area – Murdostoun Forest and Mossband Wood and this acquisition will enable us to enhance the management off and access to these areas.

“Now that we have taken ownership will be looking to engage with the local community and our new neighbours as we work up our plans to create new woodland on the site.

“This is a great opportunity for us to further contribute towards Scotland’s contribution to mitigating the Climate Emergency and we’re looking forward to working with the local community.”

FLS has acquired the site with consent for a windfarm development already in place.

The farm house, farm buildings and farm land will remain in use while the future Land Management Plan is developed.

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