STIRLING has taken the next step in its bid to become the 2020 European Volunteering Capital with a presentation in Brussels.

Council leader Councillor Scott Farmer and Cllr Chris Kane, convener of the Community Planning and Regeneration Committee, put the city’s case forward last week with representatives from local partners.

They included Volunteer Scotland and Stirlingshire Voluntary Enterprise with the case pitched at the Permanent Representation of Denmark to the EU since Danish city Aarhus is the current title holder.

Rival bidders Padua, from Italy, were also there as the seven-minute presentation to delegates from across the continent along with a five-minute video was showcased to the judges.

The winner will be announced in December and Stirling could become the first Scottish city to achieve the honour.

Cllr Farmer said: “Our presentation was powerful and very well received by those in attendance, and it was heartening to hear such positive feedback from delegates.

“Volunteering is already at fantastic levels in Stirling, but we showed the judges that we are ambitious to do so much more, ensuring the city is a place where it’s the norm to volunteer, providing a beacon of inspiration across the continent.

“2020 is already going to be a festival of volunteering in Stirling but this accolade really would be the icing on the cake, and we returned home feeling positive about our chances.

“A huge thanks to all the team at Stirling Council, Volunteer Scotland and Stirlingshire Voluntary Enterprise for their excellent work in putting the presentation together.”