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Make your views known on a sustainable economy for Cairngorms National Park

10th September 2019

Time is running out to get involved in the consultation on the new Economic Action Plan (EAP) for the Cairngorms National Park. There are many challenges to ensuring the Park’s economy is strengthened in an inclusive and sustainable way so it is important that everyone with an interest shares their views before the deadline of Friday 20th September.

The Cairngorms National Park EAP sets out five priority themes to provide focus, not only for the Cairngorms National Park Authority, but all the partners involved including local authorities, the enterprise networks, other public sector bodies, land owners and business and community groups. From promoting investment in infrastructure and supporting and attracting business, as well as working more closely with education and training providers, the EAP proposes various economic actions for the National Park over the coming years.

These include:

  • A comprehensive plan for enhancement of infrastructure and capital investment
  • Enhanced focus on the delivery of housing on allocated sites in the Local Development Plan.
  • Enhancing community and business-led housing delivery.
  • The promotion of the living wage within the National Park.
  • Promoting planning and investment in the diversification of ski centres.
  • Helping businesses adapt to climate change.
  • Investment in local enterprise development including farm diversification.
  • Working especially closely with young people to maximise opportunities and address barriers to living and working in the Park.


The consultation began in June and CNPA staff and board members have been out over the summer speaking to businesses and other groups to hear directly what they think are the opportunities and the challenges ahead.

Xander McDade, CNPA Convener said: “We have visited a great variety of businesses, from small shops to some very significant employers working in sectors as diverse as ski centres, food and drink, tourist accommodation, wildlife tourism and community enterprise. It has been excellent to hear first-hand the enthusiasm for doing business in the Park and the ideas about how we could work together better. There is still time left to respond to the EAP and I would encourage anyone with an interest to do so.”

The natural assets of the Park make it an attractive place to live, work and to visit and the EAP recognises that the development of the Park’s economy needs to be done in a sustainable and inclusive way. Covering six per cent of Scotland, the Cairngorms National Park is the UK’s most important place for wildlife and nature conservation. It is also home to around 18,000 people and attracts 1.8 million visitors per year. But house prices are 30 per cent above the Scottish average and yearly earnings are at 26 per cent below. There are also limitations around both physical and digital connectivity, increased logistics costs, lack of higher education facilities and an aging population – the Action Plan seeks to address all of these challenges.

To have your say on the Cairngorms National Park Economic Action Plan please go here. The consultation closes on 20th September 2019.