Local businesses have until September 14 to sign up for the Aboyne Centre Enhancement Scheme.
Mid Deeside Limited (MDL) has been working with Rural Aberdeenshire LEADER, in securing £87,000 for Aboyne businesses.
This has been matched by other funding from Aberdeenshire Council, Marr Area Partnership and Scottish Enterprise. Businesses in Aboyne would be expected to find around 50% of the cost themselves to match the public sector investment, to improve their shop frontage. They would have until April 2013 to complete the works.
The project has brought together public and private sector partners in a way that has not been tried before in rural Scotland and could see over £230,000 being invested to make Aboyne even more attractive for residents and visitors.
One of the first businesses to take advantage of the project is John Troup butchers, in Station Square.
Alan Ogston of John Troup said: “We are delighted with the funding available to carry out renovation work to the outside of the building. The funding is a big help in supporting the small businesses in Aboyne.”
MDL chairman Peter Argyle said: “Businesses that sign up before the cut-off date will be able to proceed within the project over the next eight months or so, at their own pace.
“Unfortunately, our funding partners have made it clear that after September 14, no further applications will be considered. We are happy to discuss the implications with anyone who does not want to miss out on this tremendous opportunity.
“We recognise that these are difficult times for the smaller retail sector; this project does offer public sector support in a way that has the potential to improve foot-fall and turnover as well as making Aboyne even more attractive to those people passing through, encouraging them to stop for a while to enjoy everything the village has to offer.”