Local Support (Galloway National Park)

I think a criteria for a New National Park should be that it has local support. Currently two proposed area have local support these are in Galloway and the Scottish Borders for a new national park. I therefore think that these area's should be considered as a result. Also there is currently no national park in the South of Scotland so believe these would be a good fit for this reason also. Galloway in particular has nearby access to an English and Irish Market of tourists which could visit a National park based here. Dumfries and Galloway as a constituency has the lowest pay of all of Scotland's regions https://planetradio.co.uk/westsound/local/news/dumfries-and-galloway-has-highest-percentage-of-people-earning-less-than-the-living-wage/ https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/local-news/average-wage-dumfries-galloway-80-10674393

Why the contribution is important

A national park based here therefore could help kickstart the local economy, bringing higher quality jobs and a tourist boom for the South of Scotland Economy. It could also help with meeting CO2 aims and environmental targets.

by Prentice on May 20, 2022 at 11:13AM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.0
Based on: 12 votes

Comments

  • Posted by McNay May 22, 2022 at 10:32

    Galloway and the Borders are two separate areas and should not be confused. Local Border supporters might not want to support Galloway’s bid……. However, I don’t agree that a National Park in Galloway is best for the local economy. Basing the local economy on tourism does not bring quality employment to an area, merely low waged jobs in cleaning and servicing. The people who benefit are those who already have: landowners, tourism business operators, those who have enough money to leap into buying properties and holiday house letting. Locals are priced out and end up being bussed in to serve. Far better to support the existing local projects that Galloway has : Biosphere, Forest Park, Dark Sky Park, Glenkens Initiative and not lose control of local planning. We should be encouraging diversity of employment, small local businesses that contribute to the Scottish economy overall. Having to build larger car parks and path infrastructure is not environmentally sustainable and introducing byelaws to control visitors behaviour defeats some of the ideas inherent in the Land Reform Act. I fail to understand how encouraging vast numbers of people and vehicles into a relatively unexploited area will help to restore or preserve habitat and wildlife or reduce CO2 emissions.
  • Posted by lauramoodie May 23, 2022 at 09:47

    I support the idea of a National Park in Galloway, building on existing designations of the Biosphere and Forest Park. I'd like to see any National Park be more considerate of biodiversity, climate change and climate mitigation and adaptation.
  • Posted by maplewood81 May 23, 2022 at 15:57

    I agree with Lauramoodie, Galloway would be the natural choice for any new National park.
  • Posted by Prentice May 25, 2022 at 14:00

    In response to McNay's point above,, Can you tell me where you would build a National Park if not Galloway? You say that basing the local economy on tourism does not / will not bring quality jobs to Galloway but isn't this better than no jobs? You also say that those who benefit are those who already have e.g. landowners, tourism business owners etc but I presume that everyone would use a National Park here, not just those select groups? You then say that Locals are 'priced out' and bussed in to service? I'm guessing this type of proposition won't impact those in outlying area's for a start where quality of life is probably better for local residents to live anyway like Dumfries and that it would take many years for this possible transition of the 'bussing' out of locals to happen. I disagree also that Dumfries and Galloway should focus on all of these smaller projects rather I think a National Park would help bring them all together and add value to these projects. Many people outside the Galloway area don't know of these projects and this could help raise their profile. Lastly your points about building larger car parks and path infrastructure would occur regardless of where you built a National Park. You could argue Galloway Park is not protected now and that by gaining National Park status would have better protection.
  • Posted by McNay May 27, 2022 at 14:23

    I see the “most unpopular planning application ever in Scotland” is back on the table at Balloch in Loch Lomond and Trossachs. The National Park authority will be selling public land (yours and mine) to a private company (Flamingo Land) if planning permission is given. This is the nature of the National Park economic model and I can’t see what benefit it gives to the local area or environment. Yes, put Scottish money into supporting the environment, wildlife, mitigating climate change and encouraging responsible access, but why give it away to tourism developers in the name of a “National Park”.
  • Posted by PeterNeuberger May 31, 2022 at 06:59

    There is no doubt that properly constituted and run by an Authority consisting of local people with local interests at heart, a National Park would be a great boon to the area. My problem - which is echoed above - is which area? There seems to be a fuzziness in what I have read on the website about what the Big Idea around which a National Park would coalesce would be. Sure there is the Biosphere, Forest Park, Dark Skies and so on, but there is no unifying theme proposed which would make any particular area of Galloway stand out as an area with its own character, and around which you could draw a natural boundary. Perhaps someone can help me out here.
  • Posted by GallowayHoopoe May 31, 2022 at 08:56

    I agree with luaramoodie above Also, jobs in tourism are not just seasonal and not only for tourists. Over time everyone benefits from living in a place where it’s easy to eat out and buy food. Increasing the wealth of an area can start anywhere; tourism seems to have served many beautiful places very well. Galloway potentially has a winter season as well as a summer one because of the wandering wildfowl and waders attracted to the area.
  • Posted by AndrewB June 02, 2022 at 11:00

    In principle I support the idea of a Galloway NP, but the reality of designating an area which is dominated by commercial forestry and renewables in the uplands and intensive agriculture in significant parts of the lowlands will be challenging. There would have to be a very strong commitment to restoration of biodiversity in these areas and a reversal of these intensive landuses, which will not be popular with all sectors. Also, as mentioned elsewhere, there is a UNESCO Biosphere in Galloway and southern Ayrshire which is now beginning to have positive impacts thanks to proper core funding via the local enterprise company. Any new NP in Galloway must work closely alongside the Biosphere.
  • Posted by ihl June 03, 2022 at 23:46

    I fully agree with the comments from McNay above. NP status in Galloway will benefit those already in business or those who already land or property owners. Much of the "benefit to the local economy" will got to them. The local jobs created in tourism will be low paid and mainly seasonal. One downside of NP status is that house prices will increase rapidly (already happening here in Galloway) as properties are snapped up for holiday lets. The locals in the low paid jobs won't be able to afford to live here. Just look what is happening in places like Cornwall and some parts of Wales - lots in the media about it recently. Do we want that here? The original post states that there is local support in Galloway and the Borders. Have the locals actually been asked. Galloway has a Galloway National Park Association which is supporting NP status but this is only a small but vocal group. If NP status requires local support, perhaps there ought to be a local referendum to see what the locals really think, rather than rely non listening to those who shout the loudest.
  • Posted by borbal June 05, 2022 at 13:01

    I agree with Peter Neuberger above - it is difficult to find a focus on what area of Galloway would become the National Park. There is talk of the biosphere, well a biosphere does not make a National Park and if that is all that Galloway has going for it then we should look elsewhere. The Borders offering, by contrast, has a good story to tell and it is easy to see the proposed area as a coherent and united whole which sets the tone for the visitor.
  • Posted by geoffreykolbe June 05, 2022 at 13:10

    "Have the locals actually been asked?" ihl asks. Well, they have in the Borders area where a question on a possible National Park was included as a question in the Scottish Borders Council consultation for their Main Issues Report. There was a lot of positive response to the question. There is also a lot of broad support from Community Councils and local newspapers.
  • Posted by AndrewPym June 05, 2022 at 21:38

    Galloway has received a great deal of public support, and this should be key to any new National Park. The three Councils of Dumfries & Galloway, East Ayrshire and South Ayrshire all support the proposal put forward by Galloway National Park Association. The Association considered the potential in great detail and then embarked on a very large round of meetings across the whole area and with many and various bodies: over 100 public meetings were held, many with Community Councils. Before its major conference in 2018, the Association carried out a survey and over 80% of the respondents were in favour of a Galloway National Park.
  • Posted by Spike June 06, 2022 at 12:12

    Agree with the comments of McNay, AndrewB and ihl
  • Posted by camusfearna June 06, 2022 at 14:42

    Would people and communities in the Scottish Borders support the establishment of a national park in the area if its set up and ongoing costs had to be found from within the existing Scottish Borders budget? I assume that question wasn't put to people as part of the Main Issue report consultation.
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