“DRIVEN AND COMMITTED” aviation group Morayvia were celebrating last night after councillors agreed they were deserving of a three-year rent-free lease.
There were no dissenting voices as members of the policy and resources committee decided to extend the lease on the former Abbeylands Primary School in Kinloss for a maximum three year period.
That allows Morayvia to forge ahead with the opening of their new science, aviation and technology centre on the site, which has already had widespread approval in “previews” for invited guests and is now expected to open to the public next month.
Corporate director Mark Palmer to councillors: “Quite clearly this group has a project they want to work on and realised they needed a property for that. This property was sitting idle and was deteriorating before Morayvia took it on.
“Since starting to use the facility they have improved it and its surrounding environment.”
Forres councillor Anne Skene was quick to back the project, saying of the school site: “It was a mess – and it no longer is. The group has saved Moray Council a considerable amount of money.”
SNP Councillor Graham Leadbitter agreed, adding: “Morayvia is clearly driven and committed to making this project work – they have generated a huge amount of interest in the aircraft they have on the site.”
Morayvia will be required to pay for maintenance and insurance on the former school site but other than that they will not be required to pay rent with the new lease guaranteeing their home base until November 30, 2018.
Last night Labour councillor Sean Morton congratulated the group in securing their new home: “I’m pleased that we agreed to continue the agreement with Morayvia until 2018. Clearly they are investing in the old Abbeylands property and making the very best they can of the site.
“Morayvia has achieved a considerable amount often against the odds. They are a great example of how to make community based projects come to life and how to bring the local community with you.
“Their efforts have been rewarded by strong public support. Today’s decision is good for Morayvia and good for Moray.”