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8th January 2024
The Erskine Reid Macewen Activities Centre on our Bishopton Estate has supported hundreds of Veterans over the years, and in 2024 we’re excited to announce that we’re looking to expand our service to Forres.
Ian Cumming, Chief Executive of Erskine Veterans Charity (and former Officer Commanding No 51 Squadron RAF Regiment, at Lossiemouth), has confirmed that Erskine’s conditional offer to buy the Victoria Hotel in Forres, has been accepted.
He stated: “We intend to transform the Victoria Hotel into a Veterans Activities Centre, in the mould of our flagship centre in the Erskine Veterans Village in Bishopton, Renfrewshire. Here, Veterans of all ages can benefit from learning new skills and hobbies, building new support networks, and staying active – with a hot meal, tea, coffee, and friendly banter always readily available.
Erskine Veterans Activities Centres have been proved to deliver life-changing and life-saving services, which we want to replicate across Scotland. We are partnering with the Leanchoil Trust in their plans to transform the Leanchoil Cottage Hospital into a community hub, Veterans Centre, and affordable housing project, in 2027. However, our early analysis and community engagement work, has confirmed that there are many within Moray’s large ex-armed forces community, who could benefit from Erskine support now. We want to have three or more centres operating in Scotland by 2027. To that end, subject to our securing affordable and practicable planning consent – we hope to be delivering health-supporting and life-affirming services, at this interim venue in Forres, before the end of 2024.”