The Scottish Rural Awards are the ultimate benchmark of excellence in Scotland’s countryside – a celebration of the enterprise, innovation, dedication and community spirit of those who live in rural Scotland and we at Colstoun are honored to be finalists in not one but two awards this year Rural Hospitality and Rural Education!
The Scottish Rural Awards take the view that Education is vital to a productive, progressive society. The Scottish Rural Awards is mindful of the many forms which education may take, and aims to champion these at every possible opportunity. This category’s reach is not limited to formal education; vocational learning is of particular interest to the Scottish Rural Awards judges, hence why Colstoun is the perfect nominee!
I’ve you’ve attended a cookery course at Colstoun you will know we take education seriously, but the cookery courses that are run every weekend only account for about 20% of courses we teach, throughout the year we run vocational and prevocational level courses to a range of students from throughout the East Lothian of all ages and abilities. We are currently in the middle of a prevocational course in conjunction with East Lothian’s High schools called East Lothian Works, teaching important life skills, cooking, communication and team building.
The judges are looking for evidence that we have helped to develop and preserve skills for future generations in rural Scotland. The judges will ask how we have worked to provide opportunities and training for young people and adults alike. Have we used education to drive forward real, positive social change?
We’d like to think that we’ve hit the nail on the head with this one, we are always looking for ways in which to transfer rural skills through to the next generation, be it through formal classes, work experience or practical experiences at Colstoun.
We’ve also been nominated for the Rural Hospitality Award. Scotland’s booming hospitality industry is continually growing and developing, with an abundance of high-quality accommodation, dining and leisure options, Colstoun has now joined those ranks!
The award criteria focuses on how we work within the rural community; how do we engage with our local resources and what value do we bring to our area in terms of local suppliers, employment, integration and positive development? Our policy of producing as many of our own ingredients as possible and buying from local businesses otherwise combined with our aim to be a pathway for those seeking jobs in a rural environment fits perfectly with this category and hopefully that will be reflected in March when the results are released!
Although it isn’t an award open for voting we would still love to hear what you all think about our nominations for these two awards.