Truerlein, a large-scale regeneration company dedicated to reinvigorate, reenergise and renew local communities today announces a bold new initiative designed to create long-term economic growth in Dufftown.

Dufftown: A New Dawn, which has been 12 months in the planning and will be run in partnership with the Dufftown and Mortlach Development Trust, takes a 360 “placemaking” approach to the challenge of urban decline. Over the next six years, Truerlein will launch a number of new amenities within the town to serve residents and visitors, create sustainable and affordable housing, help develop local talent and enterprise and promote Dufftown as a tourism and business hub on the international stage. The company will protect the heritage and ecology of the much-loved town throughout.

Renowned as the malt whisky capital of the world, with the Cairngorms National Park on its doorstep and a host of natural, sporting and historical attractions, the town has suffered in recent years from declining visitor numbers and shrinking local services. Fewer economic opportunities have also encouraged younger generations to move away in search of work. Truerlein aims to reverse this trend, with a unique, multi-faceted approach that will build lasting, sustainable economic growth and underpin a thriving community.

Mhairi-ann Gallicker, Director of Truerlein commented: “As a lover of Balvenie, Dufftown has always been close to my heart but it wasn’t until I married local lad Richard, and moved to the town, that I realised just how beautiful the area is. My father-in-law was the local photographer and his old photos show how busy the town used to be compared to now. That really struck a chord with me.” She continued, “Dufftown deserves to be reinstated as the beating heart of Speyside. With the right support, strategy and a clear route for targeted investment, we can not only lift the local economy but protect and conserve the town to create a bright and sustainable future for every member of the community.”

A phased approach for long-term growth

Over the coming years, Truerlein plans to launch a number of new retail and hospitality venues, designed to complement the existing amenities and create new opportunities for local entrepreneurs to run their own business. With the support of Truerlein’s experienced team and financial backing, local residents will be able to work towards full ownership of a successful business, without the financial risk and steep learning curve that can often accompany a new solo venture. Current plans include a new pub and secret bar and a fine dining restaurant with other facilities also in the works*.

Extensive planning

Starting early in 2020, the team has used the last 12 months to conduct in-depth research into the challenges and opportunities faced by Dufftown, consult with Moray Council on feasibility aspects and master planning, recruit expert partners and refine the business opportunity for locals and investors.  A project office with the full details of the initiative was opened at the Old Post Office**, allowing residents to learn more about the aims of Dufftown: A New Dawn, and also share their feedback. During lockdown, Truerlein also worked with members of the Dufftown and Mortlach Development Trust to open channels of communication including a pre-planning masterplan with Moray Council and local surveys.  The resulting plan is a phased, holistic approach to Dufftown’s regeneration, considering all potential avenues for investment, from infrastructure needs, to local community initiatives and groups. Having completed the Feasibility stage and Phase 1 of the plan Truerlein will now be liaising with local businesses and residents through public consultations, workshops and surveys. The plans have already gained support from local and national investors and Phase 2 of a 6 Phase plan is currently underway.

The right team

Truerlein has assembled a team of experts to address every part of the project; from design teams, sustainability best practice and construction, to project management, place branding, leisure and marketing. Most recently, Colin Corson, Operations Manager, Food & Beverage, and Dr Peter Bye-Jensen, Heritage Consultant have joined the project.

Previously a team leader at the Glenfiddich distillery, Colin will support and advise the new hospitality businesses launching throughout the project, helping new entrepreneurs with every aspect of their operations, from planning and accounts, to supplier partnerships and recruitment. Peter will work with Truerlein to ensure that all plans not only accommodate the local history and heritage of Dufftown, but also celebrate and conserve it for future generations. He will also be responsible for helping the company to meet strict ecological targets throughout each phase of the project, ensuring that Dufftown’s regeneration reflects and builds on the town’s soul and spirit.

Sustainable by design

Social and environmental sustainability lie at the heart of Truerlein’s business values and Dufftown: A New Dawn aims to set the standard for similar projects in the future. From day one, Truerlein has partnered with ARMILA Sustainability to establish ambitious targets for net zero carbon and social responsibility. Moving forward, Peter Bye-Jensen will continue to liaise with ARMILA Sustainability to maintain existing momentum and meet the stringent KPIs established in the core strategy.

Environmental sustainability will be a key consideration in the materials used across the business, the plans for low-energy housing and additional commercial initiatives that would bring new plastic recycling technology to the region.

Truerlein is also committed to working with local suppliers, partners and contractors at each stage of construction and will also work with local colleges to set up apprenticeships with the various businesses launched.

An identity that positions Dufftown for post-Covid travel and tourism

To support the town’s profile and encourage a greater sense of identity, Truerlein has created a distinctive place brand for Dufftown that highlights the natural colours and unique geography of the region. The brand marque has been gifted free of charge under license and can be used to promote the town and local events to a local, regional and global audience.

By delivering an improved range of services and attractions, under a consistent brand, Truerlein aims to re-establish Dufftown as a hub for business, leisure and tourism, positioning it for the future at the beating heart of Speyside.



Notes to editors:

* Separate announcements will be shared for the new leisure, retail and hospitality businesses as they approach launch

**Observing the Covid-19 restrictions throughout

To learn more about Truerlein or Dufftown: A New Dawn, please contact [email protected] / 07734109779


About Truerlein

Truerlein is a grass roots placemaking and community regeneration company that helps renew, reinvigorate and reenergise local communities. With a mission to deliver a sustainable future, the company focuses on large-scale projects, bringing together investors, government, expert partners and local stakeholders to drive long-term economic growth and provide new opportunities and amenities to the local community, improving their quality of life.

Dufftown: A New Dawn is a large-scale regeneration project focused on making Dufftown the beating heart of Speyside. Working closely with the Dufftown & Mortlach Development Trust, Truerlein is rolling out an ambitious plan that will cater to locals and visitors, creating new economic opportunities for local talent and a more attractive, thriving community environment for all.

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