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Protest March 09

Our Campaign

Press release - Local Community makes its ‘VIEW’ known to the National Park and Forestry Commission during their recent field trip

Local residents turned up to protest at the recent launch of Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park Biodiversity Action Plan, after they were angered by the Park offering a site visit to Loch Arklet, currently the subject of an ongoing dispute as to whether Forestry Commission Scotland should be allowed to create part of the new Great Trossachs Forest at the beauty spot.

Earlier in the day guests arriving at the David Marshall Lodge in Aberfoyle were offered campaign information as they turned up for the launch, then later on when a group of invited VIPs reached Loch Arklet for the site visit they were met by local protestors who live or work there in the tourism and farming industries.

The locals have pointed out that the world famous scenery is one of the main reasons visitors drive through many miles of forest to reach this last remaining open glen. Forestry Commission plans have been the subject of formal objections by community groups in the area, and they have collected thousands of signatures on a petition in an attempt to halt the decision. Earlier this month they took their case to Holyrood to publicise the campaign to MSPs, since the need to plant trees here is being justified by the National Park and Forestry Commission as public policy.

They have complained that the 2007 Park Plan actually states that typical highland landscapes like this one, which is specifically mentioned, are of importance to both local people and visitors and should be conserved. Also that National Park principles are not being followed and environmental, landscape, biodiversity and climate change arguments for planting at this particular location have not been properly justified. As the 2009 tourist season gets underway, campaigners hope that support for their efforts will escalate as many more tourists are expected to sign their petition.

© Save the Loch Arklet View Campaign 2009

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