Crowdfunding campaign sparked to rebuild bird hide destroyed in fire

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An appeal to help fund the replacement of a popular bird hide recently destroyed by fire was launched today. 

NatureScot’s popular Mill Hide on the shores of Loch Leven National Nature Reserve (NNR) was completely gutted in a blaze on February 18. 

NNR are looking to raise £35,000 to re-build the popular bird hide. It has currently raised £830 just two percent of its target. 

The campaign to raise funds is through MyParkScotland, Scotland’s only crowdfunding site specifically for nature reserves, parks and greenspaces.

Scottish News
The Factory Bay bird hide, Loch Leven NNR, November 2011.
©Lorne Gill/SNH

The hide, built in 2011 and situated on the edge of Kinross behind the Todd and Duncan factory, had won awards for its architectural design. 

It was a much-loved place for locals and visitors alike to enjoy some of the best views of the loch and the large numbers of birds congregating on the water.

NatureScot’s reserve manager Neil Mitchell said: “The hide was hugely popular, with so many people enjoying this wonderful vantage point for the ducks, geese and swans that feed and roost in Factory Bay – as well as the occasional glimpse of a kingfisher.

“While it’s gutting to see it destroyed, the response from the community and the general public has been amazing. Given this bird watching site’s popularity and fantastic loch side location, we are determined to replace the hide as soon as possible.”

The charred, skeletal remains of the hide, which was built in 2011 and won two design awards, will be removed in early March.

It is hoped the foundations of the structure have survived to support the replacement structure, reducing the cost.

Currently, the hide is fenced off for public safety, but NatureScot hopes to begin re-building this year. Police are investigating the fire.