Cairngorms National Park, Blair Atholl,
Calvine and Killiecrankie
The Cairngorms National Park was
officially opened in September 2003, despite
recommendations by the Scottish National Heritage to include the
Perthshire region of the Cairngorms in the park boundary, it was
omitted by the Scottish Government of the day.
Local tourist representatives along with Perth
Kinross Council campaigned for the boundary of the
Cairngorm National Park to include the Perthshire region in
the park boundary.
the Blair Atholl joins the Cairngorm National Park
After 7 years and a change of government, Blair
Atholl, Calvine and Killiecrankie are now included in the
Cairngorm National Park. The official opening taking place on
Monday 4th October 2010 by John Swinney, Cabinet Secretary for
Finance and Sustainable Growth and constituency MSP for North
Blair Atholl 'Gateway to the Cairngorms
When locals learnt the Perthshire region of the Cairngorms was
NOT to be in the Park boundary, on the 9th December
2003 the 'Blair Atholl Gateway to the Cairngorms' group
was set up.(The group was made up by representatives
of the Blair Atholl Community Council, The Blair Atholl and
Struan Initiative, Blair Castle and Atholl Estates, Perth and
Kinross Council, The Blair Atholl Tourist Association).
The purpose of the group was to "explore the
possibility of a gateway to the Cairngorms in Blair
After four years of work, in December 2007 the
Blair Atholl Gateway Group presented their plans to
local residents of Blair Atholl, Struan and Calvine who gave an
85% YES vote in favour of plans for the new Blair Atholl
Gateway Centre (click on image to left to down load
the local presentation). The Cairngorms Gateway Centre is to
be built around the existing Atholl Country Life Museum, Rangers
Information hut and chip shop/restaurant. The Blair Charitable
Trust have agreed to take this development forward in the absence
of an outside developer being found or another body within the
To get an overview of what has been agreed, read the 'Blair
Atholl Gateway Report presented to the community on
the 18th September 2007.
The Gateway Centre is unfortunately still awaiting
funding for its development. It is locally hoped that
with the inclusion of Blair Atholl in the Cairngorm National Park
funding will become available to get this important project for the
local community off the ground.
Landscapes of the Cairgorm National Park
- A very large area. The Park is 4528 sq kilometres in area, over
twice the size the Lake District and Loch Lomond and the
- A mountainous area. 4 of Scotland's 5 highest mountains are
within the Park, there are 55 summits over 900 metres. 36% of the
land area is over 800 metres and 2% is over 1000 metres.
- An arctic wilderness. The land above 600 metres - known as the
'montane zone' - is the largest area of arctic mountain landscape
in the British isles.
- The Cairngorms contains the finest collection of different
landforms outside arctic Canada - from granite tors to heavings and
leavings from Ice Age glaciers.
- The Spey, Dee and Don valleys are major features of the lower
Habitats of the Cairgorm National Park
Wildlife of the Cairgorm National Park
- The National Park is home to 25% of the UK's threatened bird,
animal and plant species.
- The Cairngorms is the best place in for the Scottish Crossbill,
the only bird unique to Britain. Golden Eagle, Osprey, Dotterell,
Capercaillie, and Crested Tit are just a few of the bird species
- The National Park is home to a wide variety of animals -
including pine martens, red squirrels, badgers, wildcats, water
vole, and otters.
- The rivers are home to a rising population of the globally
endangered freshwater pearl mussel, as well as salmon, trout, and
People of the Cairgorm National Park
- The National Park is home to over 17,000 people, living in
substantial towns, villages, hamlets, and houses in the
- Major centres of population are Aviemore, Ballater, Blair
Atholl, Braemar, Grantown-on-Spey, Kingussie, Newtonmore, and
- Tourism-related businesses account for about 30% of the
economy, including activities such as ski-ing, walking, fishing,
shooting and stalking.
- It is thought that at least 1.4m people visited the Park in
2007 - 1.1m to Badenoch and Strathspey alone.
The Communities of Blair Atholl, Calvine and Killiecrankie are
hopefull that being members of the Cairngorm National Park will
make a difference.