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Last Updated: Tuesday, 11 April 2006, 16:33 GMT 17:33 UK
National park's future mapped out
Tractor in Cairngorms National Park - image courtesy of Stewart Grant/CNPA
Cairngorms National Park spans 1,467 square miles
A blueprint for the future of the Cairngorms National Park has been unveiled.

Interested parties are being asked to comment on the draft plan, which is designed to shape policy and planning in the area for the next 25 years.

Britain's largest national park was opened in 2003 and public bodies have been shaping its future.

Issues such as affordable housing for local people and the control of deer numbers are being discussed.

The park is home to 16,000 people and 25% of the UK's threatened birds, animals and plants.

Public bodies like Scottish Natural Heritage, the Forestry and Deer Commissions, local councils and the Cairngorms National Park Authority have been working to produce a set of priorities for the future.

The Cairngorms is a wonderfully special place in terms of its natural heritage
Rhona Brankin
Deputy Environment Minister

Already issues such as affordable housing for local people, the control of deer numbers and the development of tourism have been seen as crucial if not controversial issues.

The draft Cairngorms National Park Plan, launched by Deputy Environment and Rural Development Minister Rhona Brankin, will be sent to every home and business within the park's 1,467sq m boundary.

Ms Brankin said: "People are central to all of this and the Cairngorms is a wonderfully special place in terms of its natural heritage.

Ministerial approval

"Of course, it's home to about 16,000 people. One of the key parts of the national park vision has been how we can make national parks work and how people can live, work and have recreation in them."

Other interest groups and individuals are also being consulted on the plan.

It is expected to be completed in the autumn of 2006, when it will be submitted to ministers for approval.

Work on the recommendations will begin in 2007, the authority said on its website.

See what is planned for the Cairngorms

Pylons plan 'would blight park'
08 Jun 05 |  Scotland
National park assumes powers
25 Mar 03 |  Scotland
Cairngorms park chief in place
03 Feb 03 |  Scotland

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