INNOVATION PARK PROVIDES PERFECT NEW HABITAT FOR ECO CHARITIES
Two fast growing environmental charities have selected Stirling University Innovation Park as their new home. The Bumblebee Conservation Trust and Grounds for Learning have snapped up sought after business space on the scenic campus.
The Bumblebee Conservation Trust, which will soon celebrate its ten year anniversary, is the UK’s leading charity devoted to reversing bumblebee decline; while Grounds for Learning, the Scottish arm of UK Charity Learning through Landscapes, has successfully transformed outdoor play and learning for thousands of Scottish school children over the past fifteen years.
DYNAMIC ENTERPRISE ENVIRONMENT
Business Manager Lynn Blaikie believes the Innovation Park’s enduring popularity lies in offering more than just high quality office accommodation and excellent conference and administrative facilities: “We offer a dynamic enterprise environment for innovative research and development organisations. Sharing ideas, knowledge and encouraging innovative connections is a defining feature of the Park’s operation. Our tenants reap the benefits of being part of a collaborative community with extensive research and business connections across the campus and beyond.”
CROSS POLLINATION OF IDEAS
The move will foster greater collaboration between the two charities and the University of Stirling, which are set to work together on Polli:Nation: an innovative £1.4 million school-based science and environmental education project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The ambitious 4 year initiative, led by Learning through Landscapes, will see 260 schools across the UK turn their grounds into buzzing oases for pollinating insects.
Scotland Director for Grounds for Learning, Alison Motion said: “A major draw for us in relocating to the Innovation Park is the potential for collaborative working. We look forward to drawing on the expertise of our new neighbours the Bumblebee Conservation Trust and the University of Stirling, as well as that of our other key project partners, in delivering the specialist conservation and research requirements of Polli:Nation.”
The Bumblebee Conservation Trust’s strong connection to the University of Stirling is one that Kaeren Mellin, Finance and Operations Director, is keen to maintain: “We have always been very happy at the University of Stirling, but were starting to outgrow our offices in the School of Natural Sciences where we have been based for almost ten years. When the opportunity arose to move to the Innovation Park it seemed like a very natural progression for us. The University is a special place to us and we were delighted to be able to remain on-campus but benefit from the purpose-built offices and all round business support the Innovation Park team offers.”
REDUCING CARBON FOOTPRINT
The central location of Stirling University Innovation Park was also a key pull factor for Grounds for Learning. Alison Motion said: “As an environmental charity we make a conscious effort to reduce our carbon footprint. Many of our staff live locally and are able to take advantage of the excellent bus links to the campus, as well as the city’s cycle routes.”
While the Innovation Park remains a full house, the wider business community can still take advantage of its regular programme of free networking events aimed at building connections between all businesses in the Stirling area. The next Lunch and Learn session, Invaluable Opportunities on your Doorstep, will look at the ways that Forth Valley College and the University of Stirling might help businesses to address their short and long term skills shortages and recruitment challenges. The event will take place on Wednesday 3 June, 11.30am-2.30pm. For further details visit www.suip.co.uk/events