The Scottish Government’s Architecture & Place Team have announced a continuation of their grant funding programme to support town centre regeneration design charrettes into the 2014/15 financial year.

Wick are among the Scottish towns that have shown enthusiasm for charrettes

Wick are among the Scottish towns that have shown a keen enthusiasm for charrettes

The charrette model has its roots in 19th century France, where student architects are said to have taken advantage of carts for intensive planning and design group work sessions prior to submission deadlines. In Scotland, the approach has been increasingly popular over the last five years, where towns such as Kirkcaldy and Wick have held high-profile week-long design charrettes.

These generally involve community groups, statutory bodies and professional agencies working together in intense and focused town centre master-planning sessions. As well as offering quick design solutions and generating fresh momentum for local aspirations, they have proved a welcome forum for managing discussion across a diverse group of local people, interests and organisations. The Scottish Government’s response to the National Review of Town Centres – which featured SURF’s input through an External Advisory Group – is encouraging the continued use of the charrette model to support the enhancement of community engagement and empowerment in town centre regeneration.

The total grant funding available from the Scottish Government to support design charrettes in 2014/15 is £120k. The maximum grant available per charrette is £15-20k, and the Scottish Government stipulates that it will only contribute up to 50% of total charrette costs. For more information, download the grant invitation documentation via the following link:

Scottish Government charrette grants 2014-15

The closing date for applications is 21 August. A second round of applications may be held later in the year if any funding remains unallocated.