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Rangers gather to share experience

6th March 2012

Rangers from across the Cairngorms National Park have been sharing experience at Balmoral Estate, the location for this year’s annual gathering.

The Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA) grant supports 15 Rangers who are employed by a number of different public and private organisations: Aberdeenshire Council, Angus Council, Atholl Estates, Balmoral Estate, Explore Abernethy, Glenlivet Estate, Glen Tanar Charitable Trust, The Highland Council and Rothiemurchus Estate.

Justin Prigmore, CNPA Ranger Support Officer, said: “These Rangers work at bases at the most popular and important sites in the National Park. They’ve had the opportunity to explore some of the wilder areas of Balmoral Estate and learn about different land uses and management, share their own experiences and hopefully take away some knowledge or ideas that will help them in their own work.”

Rangers and staff from the CNPA spoke about upcoming projects and awareness raising initiatives. These included ‘Tread Lightly in the Park’, a programme of events and resources aimed at promoting responsible access amongst residents and visitors. Initiatives include the ‘Easy Signage’ software that can be used to create bespoke information signs – particularly important to reinforce the need for dogs to be under close control during the bird breeding and lambing season.  Rangers were also issued handy, pocket-sized leaflets containing ‘top tips’ about camping and journeying in the National Park, to give out to visitors they meet as people start to arrive for the holiday season.

They also discussed working with young people through organised events and the Junior Ranger programme. The input of the Rangers is essential to the continued success of the Junior Ranger Project and they do a great job of introducing young people to the Cairngorms National Park.

This year the Cairngorms Rangers will be delivering four 5 day Junior Ranger programmes to pupils from Grantown Grammar School, Kingussie High School, Alford Academy, Aboyne Academy and Webster’s High School. They will also have the opportunity to help out with the exchange visit from the Bavarian Forest National Park that will take place in August.

Senior Ranger at Balmoral, Glyn Jones, said: “The annual meeting of rangers from all over the Cairngorms National Park is always a pleasure. In particular this year it was a great pleasure for the Balmoral Rangers to host the event on their own patch. It gave us a great opportunity to highlight the important work we do both on the high ground of Lochnagar and lower down in the woods. We have a very strong partnership with the National Park Authority which we hope will go from strength to strength during the next five years.”