Mackenzie Construction makes positive impact with Crinan Community Fund

Community groups across Crinan have benefited from a leading Scottish civil engineering contractor’s community fund.

Mackenzie Construction, Scottish Canals’ principal contractor, delivering the canal custodian’s winter works programme for a third year along the Crinan Canal, launched the fund to give something back to the communities that have become a second home to many of the team over the multi-year works programme.

The first call for applications in the summer of 2023 was a resounding success. Applications were submitted by many worthy organisations and initiatives and following a review of applications, donations have been made to 10 organisations and improvement works projects have been scoped and started for a further eight.

One organisation to benefit from additional funding is the Lochgilphead Red Star Youth Football Team, who were awarded a lump sum to pay for new kits and equipment, making the club more accessible and open to a wider number of enthusiastic young footballers.

Fraser Knox, Club Chairman, commented: “Lochgilphead Red Star Youth Football Club would like to extend a huge thank you to Mackenzie Construction Community Fund for the funding they kindly donated to our club towards the purchase of reusable equipment. This has allowed us to purchase new equipment for the club that will allow the children the ability to progress and build their skills.”

Works have also begun to support the Ardrishaig Community Garden with pathways, drainage, levelling, and preparation works for their planting, helping them to establish a community garden for all to enjoy.

Sheila Groat, ACG Secretary, commented: “We at ArdrishaigCommunity Garden are delighted that Mackenzie Construction has selected us as one of the projects they will be supporting. The application process was simple and everyone we have met, or spoken to, at Mackenzie has been very helpful and supportive of our project. The work the team are going to carry out will make a significant difference to the development of the garden, especially the levelling of the site and the improved drainage. This productive green space within Ardrishaig will benefit greatly from Mackenzie Construction’s support.”

Community engagement has always been a key factor for Mackenzie Construction throughout the project and the Community Fund further reinforces that commitment to those in Crinan and the surrounding communities.

Gavin Chesney, Contracts Manager at Mackenzie Construction, said: “We set out to provide a fund that would benefit local groups, schools, charities, and volunteer organisations across the community, and I’m pleased we have managed to achieve this. With 18 local initiatives supported so far, we will be focusing on completing all community works over the next few months and look forward to working closely with those involved.”

Laurie Piper, Head of Customer Experience and Delivery at Scottish Canals, said: “We’re delighted that Mackenzie Construction is making such a positive difference at Crinan, and to see so many local groups benefiting from this valuable community fund. We encourage our contractors to go above and beyond, and Mackenzie Construction have certainly achieved that at Crinan, both on-site in our winter works programme, and in their support to the community.”

Scottish Canals’ current works programme on the Crinan Canal is the third year of planned winter works replacing life-expired lock gates; this year focuses on the Crinan sea lock.