Page last updated at 10:00 GMT, Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Islanders voting on park status

Cliseam. Pic: Iain Maclean
An Cliseam is the highest hill on Harris

Islanders on Harris in the Western Isles are being balloted on whether they want to pursue national park status.

The island's population has been declining steadily - down by a quarter over a 20-year period.

Some argue the designation would create jobs and attract new residents.

But others are wary, pointing out that national park status would mean restrictions on other types of potential economic development.

Scotland has two national parks - one covering the Cairngorms and the other Loch Lomond and the Trossachs.

Harris is the southern part of the landmass attached to Lewis and among its geographical features are the Harris Hills - the highest is An Cliseam.

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