Page last updated at 13:18 GMT, Tuesday, 1 September 2009 14:18 UK

Camping ban plan for bonnie banks

Loch Lomond
The park attracts about 3.5 million visitors each year

Camping is to be banned at some parts of the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park to counter the ill effects of high visitor numbers.

The National Park Authority (NPA) said it would also create new informal campsites with added facilities in an effort to conserve the area.

The park is one of the most visited rural areas of Scotland with over 3.5m visitors a year.

It is also credited for generating nearly £250m annually for the economy.

The scheme will initially be trialled in three areas; East Loch Lomond, Loch Venacher/Lubnaig and Luss.

The initiative comes amid efforts to reduce levels of anti social behaviour, including vandalism and rowdy behaviour, at the park.

'Considerable pressure'

Fiona Logan, chief executive of the NPA, said: "Our success in encouraging large numbers of people to visit the park has led to a number of issues that the NPA and partners need to resolve including informal camping, litter, toileting and traffic management.

"There are also the problems of excess - the extreme issues caused by a minority of people resulting in a range of anti-social behaviours including drunkenness, vandalism, criminal damage, assault and vehicular trespass that we wish to reduce through increased management."

The 720-square mile (1,865 sq km) park contains some of Scotland's most iconic scenery, including 21 munros such as Ben Lomond and Ben More, and lochs like Loch Tay, Loch Katrine and Loch Lomond.

Scotland's rural affairs and environment secretary, Richard Lochhead, said the measures would help conserve the area for future visitors.

He added: "Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park is one of Scotland's most spectacular assets and an area of astounding natural beauty.

"There are many visitors during the summer months which has put considerable pressure on the area over the years.

"So it is essential we all pay due respect to the area when visiting."



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