Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Alison Spence, Access and Conservation Officer

The new Access and Conservation on Tiree is Alison Spence.

Part of Alison's remit is to identify suitable overnight camping sites around the island to cope with the increase in campers and camper vans. She is interested in hearing from anyone who could potentially be interested in offering this service. Small areas for use by 5 or 6 campervans require minimum set up and are easier to establish than may first be thought. Alison can provide information to anyone interested.

Alison would like to hear your views on a Voluntary Permit System aimed at everyone using the parking and access points around the island. A nominal monitory contribution would be implemented for the upkeep of existing sites but also to provide new sites where needed. Providing designated parking and access would help prevent the further development and erosion of the many tracks across the Tiree machair. Alison is also looking for your idea for the issuing of such permits are to make them available at local shops and businesses, public facilities and to add an optional fixed sum to accommodation fees.

Your views are also welcomed on the current public facilities available on the island. At present the only public toilets are in Scarinish. Alison will be working with Frances Woodhead, the local power down officer, on the possibility of providing further facilities such as composting toilets at other sites across the island.

You can email me Alison at: or call to see her at the Rural Centre on Monday, Wednesday and Friday 1.30 – 3.30pm Tel:220677 and at other times on 07765449487. She looks forward to hearing your views on these points or any other issues of access and conservation on the island.

1 comment:

Jim said...

As a visitor to the island for many years, I welcome the work being done to provide more structured vehicle access to the beaches.

Although I have enjoyed the freedom of being able to drive up to a beach and go windsurfing, I recognise that this kind of access needs to be controlled to protect the local area and land owners. A set of small carparks and motorhome parks and facilities would be a great step forward and I would be more than happy to pay to use these in a compulsory scheme.

I am concerned that the control of access to the beaches is being applied before alternatives have been put in place. This sends a message to visitors and friends of Tiree. It would be very helpful if a plan and timescale were made available and if alternative facilities could be provided before the current customary access is stopped.

Visiting vehicles are only one of the causes of the degradation of the machair and their effect should be looked at in the context of the many other causes.