Biosphere Newsletter – October 2022

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Welcome to our October 2022 newsletter...

Greetings to all our friends across the Biosphere and beyond! With wind, rain, and stunningly beautiful autumn days, there's plenty to do both indoors and out this month. Between in-person events don't forget you can contact any of our team at and find us on social media via the links at the bottom of this page.

The photo of young saplings below was taken by our Land Use Advice Officer, Mary Berry, at Threave Estate where we were invited to spend time exploring the management and restoration work underway at Kelton Mains. Read more in Mary's article on our News page.
In a landmark event for the GSA Biosphere we have welcomed the Minister for the Environment and Land Reform, Mairi McAllan MSP, to launch our 10th anniversary year and publication of The State of the Biosphere Report. Partners and stakeholders including our core funders South of Scotland Enterprise joined us for presentations and a celebratory brunch in the Biosphere Community of St John's Town of Dalry. The report looks back at GSAB's achievements to date and forward to where we can address local priorities particularly in land use maximising the benefits of our ecosystem services; find out more about what these are via the link below.
Click here to read more about the Ministerial visit to Dalry
Applications are open now for Proud Supporter businesses to apply for the Biosphere Certification Mark. This is the second (and last) application window of 2022 which will close on 21st November. Certification brings with it not only support in becoming a more sustainable enterprise but advice on sharing all that hard work with your customers, visitors or guests. Any Proud Supporters who are thinking about becoming certified and would like to learn more about showcasing sustainability through marketing is invited to attend our next Green Stories webinar on 19/10/22. Please email for the link.
Click here to find out more about the Biosphere Certification Mark
There's one more session to go in our Connecting Cairnsmore series, with places still available to book (it's free). A National Nature Reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest, Cairnsmore is one of GSAB's Core Areas, meaning that its heritage, conservation value and sense of place are an essential part of our UNESCO Biosphere designation. Please join us to talk about sustainable tourism and how connecting with the site can be good for business all year round. For those who can't make it on the 15th, we invite you to read about our team's visit to Cairnsmore this summer.
Click here to book for Connecting Cairnsmore
The Wool Gathering is a Biosphere project to explore new uses for wool from Blackface sheep, arguably the most iconic breed in southwest Scotland whose fleece has sadly been devalued over recent years. Membership of our public Facebook group is now approaching 300 - always room for more! We're delighted to be holding our first in-person events in October at Dalmellington, Castle Douglas and Girvan - if you're interested in wool in any way, please do join us. 
Click here to book your place at one of our Bleat n' Blethers
It's almost time for the Wild Goose Festival 2022 which celebrates the ancient connection between art, music, storytelling, and the changing seasons of nature. The festival programme (linked below) is packed with walks, talks and events that celebrate the Biosphere's migratory birds, wetland landscapes, and the richness of local creative arts. GSAB is proud to be a festival partner and co-host of events including with our friends at Dublin Bay Biosphere.
Click here to view the Wild Goose Festival 2022 programme
The new date for the last in the series of The Land Remains has been announced, an event to experience and discuss regenerative farming which will take place at Biosphere-certified Low Auldgirth Steading. We'll be joined by local farmer and bestselling author Patrick Laurie. This is a free event with no need to book - any queries please contact For anyone interested in sustainable farming and food in the GSA Biosphere we recommend taking a look at the D&G Sustainable Food Partnership linked below; their projects include the SW Scotland Regenerative Farming Network and Local Food Gatherings, which are underway now.
Click here to get involved with sustainable farming and food

Finally...a warm welcome to all the individuals, businesses and community groups that have signed up as Proud Supporters of our UNESCO Biosphere recently. They include Chartered Architect Hazel Smith, sustainable holiday let The Yurt at Craignee, artisan woodcrafter Wagtails Wood Art, and agroforestry and peatland restoration specialists The Future Forest Company. The commitment of local people to sustainability is amazing and everyone on Team GSAB firmly believes it demonstrates how southwest Scotland can be a model of better living for other regions and communities at home and abroad. Please do check out our Proud Supporters map below to see all the businesses that are members of our Proud Supporters scheme.
Click here to meet our Proud Supporter businesses and plan your next shopping trip, food & drink experience or Biosphere adventure
Don't forget that we're social! Follow our daily news and activities via the links below:
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