Variety award nomination for Skye Farm Shop

Skye Farm Shop has been nominated as best new Scottish company in the Scottish Variety Awards. It is the only Highland company to be shortlisted, and after only two months of trading.

Martin Maclure (26) started the business in Armadale in mid-December with support from Highland Opportunity’s Business Gateway and the Prince’s Trust Youth Business Scotland services.

Setting up the business was a big undertaking for Mr Maclure, who is also studying for a masters in Material Culture and Gàidhealtachd History.  Getting the business started included converting a portable building beside the Armadale petrol station and post office into a new kitchen space and cosy seating area, and building display units.

Mr Maclure attended several of the free business start-up training courses offered by Business Gateway, and worked closely with Alistair Danter, regional develop­ment officer for Skye. He helped Mr Maclure develop a comprehensive business plan together with financial projections and budgets, and to create a strategy for marketing and promoting the business. A PTYBS loan enabled him to meet the start-up costs of converting the premises, and buying equipment and stock.

The shop – which sells and promotes locally-sourced produce and offers visitors a range of home-cooked fare – has gone from strength to strength and Martin’s hard work has been rewarded with a nomination in the 2014 Capital FM variety awards.

He said: “I am delighted to have received an award nomination so soon after opening. It has made me realise how supportive the community are, for which I am so grateful. Thank you also to Highland Opportunity, Business Gateway and PTYBS for all the help so far getting the business of the ground.”