Cairngorms National Park

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Cairngorms National Park rangers go European

17th July 2012

A quartet of countryside rangers from the Cairngorms National Park have been selected for this years’ International Junior Rangers Camp, which takes place in Slovenia and Italy next week.

Junior Rangers Robert Amphlett (14) from Grantown-on-Spey and Hannah Scott (14) from Alford in Aberdeenshire will make the trip this weekend (Saturday 21 July) with mentor rangers Glyn Jones from Balmoral Estate and Helen Rowe who works for Aberdeenshire Council.

For the first time, the camp is taking place over two locations – Triglav National Park in Slovenia and the nearby Prealpi Giulie Regional Park in Italy.

As well as taking part in a range of activities such as hiking and biking, the rangers will be looking at how these two parks operate and are being asked to think about how well national parks communicate with young people.

Launched by EUROPARC in 2002, the Junior Ranger programme celebrates its 10th birthday this year. Since then, a network of protected areas have become involved, with activities taking place all over Europe. The International Junior Ranger Camp is the highlight however, and is a great opportunity for young people to have fun and discover more about the biodiversity.

In the Cairngorms National Park, the Junior Ranger programme has been running for four years and is managed by the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA), who has helped the rangers meet their travel expenses for the trip.

Robert – a 4th year pupil at Grantown Grammar School – said:I’m really looking forward to going on to the Junior Ranger Camp. It’s going to be very exciting and interesting to see a different National Park.”

Balmoral’s Glyn Jones commented: “Working with the junior rangers has been a great pleasure. They are always enthusiastic and have managed to complete a great deal of work on Balmoral Estate from maintaining upland paths to controlling invasive species and improving habitats for wildlife. It will be great to meet other rangers involved in projects from across Europe and gain ideas that we could use in the Cairngorms National Park.

“Alan Smith, Outdoor Learning Officer at the CNPA added: “The Junior Ranger Project is a great opportunity for young people to find out about the Cairngorms National Park and potential career pathways in the land based sector. It is also a lot of fun and they get to take part in outdoor activities and meet people from different backgrounds.”