The Coalfields Community Futures Programme is an approach to local community planning and sustainable community development that aims to encourage active citizenship and build local democracy. It enables communities to devise a community action plan which makes a case for the things that the community thinks are important and wishes to make happen.

The Coalfields Regeneration Trust recognises that some communities have found it difficult to secure a fair share of the funding that has been available in the last decade. CRT and other funders have found that in these ‘cold spots’, community leadership, participation and group activity are relatively weak.


The programme involves identifying former mining Communities that have failed to benefit substantially from external funding.  In these areas the communities:

  • Identify local needs and priorities
  • Develop a deliverable community action plan
  • Make small scale improvements via a participatory budget Fund
  • Work together with support to secure external funding
  • Work with each other to develop relationships and partners


Since the inception of the Coalfields Community Futures Programme 13 five year plans have been prepared following an extensive participatory process that involved all the community, this included:

  • Stakeholder focus group interviews
  • Community views household surveys
  • Preparation of a Community Profile
  • Community Open Day

 The process encourages widespread involvement of local people in each Action Plan, each plan includes:

  • A vision for the future of the community
  • Views on the current state of the community
  • Priorities for action
  • The main strategies for community development

Our strategy in 2018/2019 involves:

Delivering the Coalfields Community Futures programme in these 4 new coalfield communities:

  • East Wemyss – Fife
  • Salsburgh – North Lanarkshire
  • Auchinleck – East Ayrshire
  • Waterside – East Dumbartonshire

Supporting 2 larger communities (averaging population of 15,000), Blantyre and Cowdenbeath to develop a new 5 year community action plan. This is being done in partnership with the Electoral reform Society

Revisit 5 communities that have come to the end of their 5 year action plan – this is a shorter process where we, with local residents, review the past 5 years, progress made the actions they have taken and develop a new community plan, these communities are:

  • Oakley & Comrie – Fife
  • Mayfield & Easthouses – Midlothian
  • West Calder & Harburn – West Lothian
  • Shotts – North Lanarkshire
  • Moodiesburn – North Lanarkshire