Potential World Heritage Site in the Flow Country
10th January 2019
A World Heritage Site in Caithness and Sutherland?
The Flow Country currently sits on the UK's tentative list for World Heritage Site inscription, in recognition of its world-class blanket bog habitat and unique assemblages of bird species. A Working Group has been established to put forward The Flow Country's nomination to the UK Government, who will decide if the nomination can proceed to UNESCO.
If The Flow Country becomes a World Heritage Site, it will join The Great Barrier Reef and The Serengeti as one of the most important natural sites in the world. UNESCO's World Heritage Site status is considered the most prestigious of all heritage accolades, making it the Michelin Star of the heritage world!
Around the world, the communities of existing World Heritage Sites have made use of their internationally-recognised accolade to bring new and exciting opportunities. Companies both big and small who produce anything within a site's boundaries can use World Heritage status as a mark of quality when marketing their products; hotels and B&Bs can invite guests to stay in a World Heritage Site; tour companies can encourage visitors to stay in the area for an extra day or two to see something of international importance; academic institutions can offer prospective students the opportunity to learn in a world-class environment... the list goes on!
Before any of these opportunities can be realised, however, we will need to convince first the UK Government and then UNESCO that The Flow Country has Outstanding Universal Value (OUV). OUV is UNESCO's unique approach to judging the value of a site and we believe the Flow Country will achieve top marks!
Alongside compiling our nomination documents, we will also be running an important community consultation, which will give the communities and businesses of Caithness and Sutherland the chance to share their thoughts and ask questions about our project. There will be several consultation events across both counties in the spring, which we hope will give as many people as possible the chance to come and meet us face-to-face.
You can find out more about our project and be the first to know about our consultation events by following our social media platforms and checking our website:
SNH Leaflet on the Peatlands at - https://www.nature.scot/natural-heritage-futures-peatlands-caithness-and-sutherland