A “very significant” buyout has been completed between a community trust and one of Scotland’s biggest landowners.
It will see Newcastleton and District Community Trust (NDCT) take over 750 acres – known as Holm Hill – from Buccleuch’s Borders Estate.
Buccleuch executive chairman Benny Higgins said the trust’s “passion and commitment” had been “tremendous”.
Talks are ongoing with community groups in Langholm and Wanlockhead about other buyout bids in southern Scotland.
Mr Higgins said: “This is a very significant community buyout and demonstrates what can be achieved through people working shoulder to shoulder in order to turn hopes and dreams into reality.
“We heartily congratulate the trust team who spared no effort in ensuring the transfer of this land has been completed as quickly and smoothly as possible.
“We look forward to watching their plans come to fruition.”
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Holm Hill, which lies above the village of Newcastleton, has been farmed by the community for generations.
It is now hoped to use the area for renewable energy, leisure activities and further farming.
The buyout bid was awarded £850,000 by the Scottish Land Fund earlier this year.
NDCT secretary Barbara Elborn said it was “delighted” to have concluded the deal.
“Huge effort from lots of people and many organisation have enabled this to happen and we thank them for their support, but now the hard work really begins,” she said.
“We are looking forward to putting our plans into action; building a brighter, more diverse economy, delivering a dynamic, positive outlook for our future.
“Owning Holm Hill means we can build a legacy for our families and their children and that is the best news of all.”
Buccleuch has been reducing the footprint of its landholdings in the last decade and said it had sold approximately 30,000 acres of land over that period to farmers and community organisations.
It said it had reinvested revenue from land sales in a variety of business projects across the farming, forestry, renewable energy and leisure and hospitality sectors.