"National Park" is a brand with great regenerative power that Government must use

"National Park" is an internationally and locally recognised brand of a Quality saying this Landscape, Environment, Culture etc. is highly valued by our country. It immediately signifies that an area has importance to the country, and raises the area's profile. The converse is also true. When a country does NOT designate an area, it is saying to the tourist community that the area is not considered special or worthy of a visit, whether this be fair or not. We have this situation in the Scottish Borders where the northern slopes of the Cheviots (broadly speaking) are contiguous with and no less beautiful and culturally important than the Northumberland National Park in England. But Scotland sends the message that it does not value this area of The Scottish Borders in the same way. Thus the Scottish Borders has become an area to whizz through on the way north, rather than a tourist destination. The same will apply to other areas in Scotland that feel worthy of designation. Though I'm not wanting to detract from the efforts of various agencies already in place, it is true that tourists do not select a destination because it has a Development Agency, a Destination Alliance, or a 2-year Tourist Board marketing initiative. However, an area becomes immediately worth considering for a holiday if it is a National Park.

Why the contribution is important

An area's profile in the tourist community is important to many peoples livelihoods in economicaly marginal areas that are scenically, culturally, historically etc. special. Diversification into tourism adds a vital element to the economics of many hill farms, for example, which via the multiplier effect boosts other businesses in the supply chain to the visitor-facing businesses such as Glamping and Camping, Holiday Rentals, Activity Holidays and so on. The reluctance to date of Scottish Administrations to use the economic boosting power of designating National Parks is regretted in many areas.

by alanbaileyspitaltowertourismltd on May 31, 2022 at 05:20PM

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  • Posted by camusfearna June 01, 2022 at 13:58

    There are large areas of Scotland (Skye, Perthshire, Fife, Borders, D&G, Ayrshire, East Lothian, Western Isles, and so on) which are not national parks yet they regularly attract significant volumes of tourists. I disagree that not designating an area as a national park is a signal that the nation thinks the areas are not special and not worthy of a visit. The logic of the argument that to be a meaningful tourism destination requires national park designation would mean that nearly all of Scotland should be designated a national park, which clearly would not be sensible and would not meet the criteria for establishing a national park.
  • Posted by scottishwildlandgroup June 04, 2022 at 14:26

    National park designation should see a balance between protection for the landscape and opportunities for local communities. By it's very nature a national park is a national asset, administered on behalf of the nation. However local people should be supported to make the most of any economic opportunities that arise in a sympathetic way so preserving what people have come to see (and the reason for the designation in the first place). This is a balancing act but it can be done.
  • Posted by croftercowrie June 05, 2022 at 18:05

    I agree with camusfearna.
  • Posted by AndrewPym June 05, 2022 at 21:52

    Designation as a National Park confers a status on the area which signals its natural and cultural qualities to the wider world. It encourages local people to take pride in their area and it improves the opportunities for tourism based and other employment opportunities (including self-employment) for many.
  • Posted by PaulTarling June 06, 2022 at 10:58

    I must Agree with A.Pym, National Park designation gives credence to the designated area and its periphery and to an extent to the services that service the area. This give a wider benefit to the area than just the designation.
  • Posted by DameKelly June 06, 2022 at 11:48

    This comment has been removed by a moderator.

  • Posted by DameKelly June 06, 2022 at 11:48

    I agree with A.Pym.
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