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Funding FAQ's

Here are a few questions we have been asked recently, if you have a question which is not listed here, please contact the LEADER Team.

Local Action Group

The Local Action Group (LAG) is responsible for the strategic direction and implementation of the LEADER programme in Rural Perth and Kinross, including making decisions on applications for funding. The LAG represents a wide range of interests and is made up of representatives from the public, private and voluntary sector. The Rural Perth and Kinross LEADER Local Development Strategy sets out how the 2014-2020 LEADER programme will be implemented within the area.  The strategy was produced in consultation with communities and businesses and explored the key needs and opportunities available to communities within Perth and Kinross, which could help to support the local economy and communities to become stronger and more resilient.

Delivery of the strategy will be achieved through the development of projects which can demonstrate strong linkages with the 2 main objectives and 4 priority areas that were identified as priorities for funding.  Currently four sub groups will consider applications before recommendations are presented to the full Local Action Group.  The sub groups include: Enterprise, Community Capacity, Rural Broadband and Young People

The Rural Perth and Kinross Rural Team comprise of a Co-ordinator, Project Officer and an Administrator.

The current members of the Perth & Kinross LAG include:



Jackie Brierton - LAG Chair


Sub Groups:  Enterprise

Jackie is the Chair of the PK LEADER LAG.  She has more than 30 years’ experience in business, social enterprise, policy development and EU Funded projects.  Jackie is a member of the newly-formed National Council of Rural Advisers, which will provide advice to the Scottish Government on future policy and support for the rural economy.  She is also the Enterprise Manager for GrowBiz and Vice-Chair of Women's Enterprise Scotland CIC.



Serge Merone

LAG Vice Chair & Investment Manager, Perth and Kinross Council

Sub Group: Community Broadband

Experienced Project Manager with in-depth knowledge of local government and economic development with a particular focus on rural development, community-led projects, smart cities and investment in key sectors such as low carbon and renewable energies, digital connectivity, smart mobility. Prince2 Registered Practitioner leading strategic projects and programmes.

Extensive working experience on EU programmes and policies, investment and funding.

Living and working experience acquired in different European countries which has allowed me to develop an open minded, innovative strategic attitude to problem solving, negotiation and communication as well as a capacity to analyse complex information in a multicultural context.



Fraser McGowan

LAG Accountable Body Representative. Investment Team Leader, Perth & Kinross Council

Sub Group:  Enterprise

Fraser plays a key role on the LAG ensuring that the delivery of the  Rural Perth and Kinross LEADER Programme  adheres to the strict governance the Council, the accountable body, requires to administer the funds on behalf of the area.    

He manages the LEADER Team and brings to the LAG his in-depth knowledge of economic development, culture of enterprise, inward investment and community –led projects.  He is also Business Mentor with Entrepreneurial-Spark.



Katrina MacPherson

PKVAS Third Sector and Volunteering Hub

Sub Group:  Community Capacity & Enterprise

Katrina, Social Enterprise Development Officer, gives guidance to individuals, charities, community groups and existing social enterprises. She also works to develop the sector as a whole, attending Community Planning Partnership meetings and leads the Perth & Kinross Social Enterprise Network.



Alisdair Stewart

The Kinross-shire Partnership Ltd

Sub Group:

Alisdair is Chair of the Kinross-shire Partnership. He has 40 years’ experience in financial sectors and is chairman of Aero Space Scientific Educational Trust, a new social enterprise (and director of its trading subsidiary - Aero Space Kinross Ltd) which aims to create an aviation and space related knowledge hub, visitor attraction and event venue.



Douglas Swan

Birks Cinema Trust

Subgroups:  Enterprise & Community Capacity

Douglas is familiar with rural LEADER funding, and since 2010 has taken part in the establishment of, and funding provision for, 3 Highland Perthshire organisations.  Although now a retired chartered accountant, his career included roles as auditor and consultant with a big four multinational accounting firm, project manager, software consultant, and Finance Director.



Jim Clarkson


Sub Group:

Jim is Visit Scotland’s Regional  Partnerships Director (East) and has over 30 years of private and public sector experience.  Good understanding of what a business and local groups need to do to promote their product and delivering high quality experiences to visitors.



Mike Strachan

Forestry Commission

Sub Group:

Mike has worked for Forestry Commission for over 30 years and keen interest in an integrated approach to land management, communities and tourism. Strong advocate of collaboration, partnerships and knowledge exchange.



Lisa Roberts

National Farmers' Union Scotland & NFU

Sub Group: Enterprise

‘Lisa has worked with NFU Scotland for 16 years, representing members across Scotland and currently covering Forth & Clyde Regions.  She has represented NFUS on both Agricultural Business Development Scheme and Farm Business Diversifications Scheme project assessment committees.  She has also successfully completed Scottish Enterprise’s Rural Leader Programme.



Gina Ford

Scottish Enterprise, Stakeholder and Partnership Executive

Sub Group:

Gina is involved in partnership working with local authorities, community planning partnerships and LEADER groups in Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and parts of Tayside.  She is an experienced Community Planning Officer.



Clare Cooper

ELLi (Assisted Living Technology) Ltd

Sub Group:  Enterprise

Clare is a founding director of ELLi (Assisted Living Technology) Ltd. Winner of the 2017 Scottish Women in Business Innovator Award, Clare works across the fields of public health, arts, culture & heritage & tourism. She is also the founding director of  the Alyth Development Trust.  Alongside this she is also an independent producer of arts, culture and heritage projects, a member of @fleetcollective, co-founder and co-director of @thsscotland, co-proprietor of @vanorascottages and co-founder of Alyth Craft Tourism.



Vicki Unite

Perthshire Chamber of Commerce

Sub Group: Enterprise

Vicki is Perthshire businesswoman and Perthshire Chamber of Commerce’s Chief Executive.  She is an experienced data analyst with experience work with international news company Reuters and global financial services firm JP Morgan Chase.



John Gregory    

Rural Services Scotland

Sub Group: Enterprise

John is the Company Secretary and Treasurer of the Farmer Controlled Cooperative which has 265 members and provides assistance and advice to its members.



Heather Boag

Centre for Enterprise at Perth College UHI     

Sub Group: Young People

Heather is the Business Link Manager at Perth College UHI - Centre for Enterprise and has over 20 years' experience of providing an exceptionally high level of customer services in a variety of large national and international organisations as well as working for SMEs and herself.


Andrew Burnett

Elevator / Business Gateway Services

Sub Group:  Enterprise

Andrew has been the Director of Operations for 13 years at Elevator, a not for profit distribution private business with a keen eye on re-investing within our local communities.


Iain Matheson - LAG Vice Chair

Luncarty, Redgorton & Moneydie Community Council 

Sub Group: Community Capacity

Iain joins the group following a long career involving agriculture, fisheries, crofting and rural development and policies, European Funding throughout Scotland and he played a key role in the previous Ayrshire LEADER funding rural communities development and the Intereg IVA programme.



David Smythe

Perthshire Tourism Partnership               

Sub Group: Enterprise

David is Chairman of the Perthshire Tourism Partnership and a small farmer, now heavily involved in the tourism world through running on-farm self-catering cottages and the Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers. He enjoys the challenge of representing and promoting tourism, especially the self-catering sector, in Scotland.



Kirsty Walker

Aberfeldy Young Farmers

Sub Group: Young People & Enterprise



Lorna Watson.


Sub Groups: Enterprise & Young People

Lorna is the Business Engagement Executive covering Tayside. Lorna graduated from Heriot Watt University with a BA in Business Management. Lorna’s previous role was as a Business Adviser with Business Gateway assisting start up and growth businesses and facilitating Women into Business events.





Denise Jackson MBE

Auchterarder Community Sports Association and Rotary.

Sub Group: Community Capacity & Young People 

Denise is currently the 37 President for Auchterarder & District Rotary Club. She is also the Chair of the Auchterarder Community Sports Association which aims to promote sport and active recreation within the local area. Prior to this she founded Auchterarder Gymnastics Club and remained the Head Coach until 2008.



Rachael Wright

Central Regional Manager for Scottish Land & Estates.

 Before joining Scottish Land & Estates in July 2015, Rachael spent 13 years in the Cleaning, Hygiene & Maintenance Chemical Manufacturing sector. She was a Main Board Director for 5 years, leaving to spend time with her young family. In that time, she has Co-Founded, an online physical grain/soft commodity exchange website business. Rachael studied Agricultural Economics at Newcastle University.


 If you would like to be considered for a place on the Local Action Group please complete the LAG request form.



The Rural Perth & Kinross LEADER Team


Sharon Rice-Jones

Rural Perth and Kinross LEADER Co-ordinator

Tel: 01738 476517

Mob: 07500 918060

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Becky Douglas

Rural Perth and Kinross LEADER Project Officer

Tel: 01738 476504

Mob: 07771 390141

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.





Our postal address is:

Perth & Kinross Council

The Environment Service

Pullar House

35 Kinnoull Street



Application Deadlines

The Rural Perth & Kinross LEADER Programme is open to applications, however funds can not be released until after the Scottish Governement's online LARCS system is fully functional in the Spring 2016.

The below are indicative deadlines for the submission of application forms and Local Action Group meeting / assessment dates.

Please ensure you have submitted your Expression of Interest and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. prior to submitting your application.                   

Draft application Final application  Funding Panel  Decision Date
6th November 2017 13th November 2017 11th January 2018
26th February 2018 26th March 2018 10th May 2018
11th June 2018 23rd July 2018 6th September 2018
29th October 2018 26th November 2018 TBC 

Assessment & Approvals

Once you have submitted your application, the application will be verified and then assessed by the relevant members of the releavant LAG Sub Group (Young People / SME / Broadband / Community Capacity) and then assessed every two months by the full Local Action Group. Submission and assessment dates can be found here.  The Local Action Group assessment considers factors such as how closely the project meets the aims of the Rural Perth and Kinross LEADER Programme, engagement of the community in the project, the sustainability of the project and how innovative the project is.

It is likely that the maximum grant achievable from LEADER will be 50% of total eligible costs.  Projects requesting less than £1000 from LEADER will be ineligible.  As LEADER is not able to fully fund any project you will be required to demonstrate that you have match funding in place before your application will be considered.

If you are seeking funding of less than £5,000, there is a fast track process for assessments, whereby, the application can be submitted at any time, with decisions made on a rolling basis without the need to wait until the next Local Action Group Meeting.

Assessments of applications seeking funding of more than £5,000 will be made at the next Local Action Group Meeting.  Such meetings are likely to take place quarterly with deadlines for submission of applications for the meeting published in this section of the site in advance.

Offer of Funding

Once the LAG has assessed the application, you will be informed of the decision immediately.

For those projects which are successful, an offer letter will be sent, detailing the funding offer, which must be accepted in writing within 14 days of the date on which the offer letter was issued.  The project must not commence until after the offer letter has been signed and returned to the LEADER office.

Match Funding

It is likely that the maximum grant achievable from LEADER will be 50% of total eligible costs.  Projects requesting less than £1000 from LEADER will be ineligible.  As LEADER is not able to fully fund any project you will be required to demonstrate that you have match funding in place before your application will be considered.

LEADER sits within the Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP), you may wish to check whether your project would be eligible for one of the other grant schemes.  An overview of the schemes can be found here: 

There is also a comprehensive database of funding organisations in Scotland on the SCVO Funding Scotland website: 


PK Leader

Environmental Services
Perth & Kinross Council
Pullar House
35 Kinnoull Street
Perth, PH1 5GD


01738 477 963


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