Visitor Management Plans for National Nature Reserves

  • A rocky headland seen across gentle waves breaking on a stony beach.
  • A man with close-cropped black hair, holding a large red deer skull with branching antlers.
  • A group opf four people dwarfed by a towering granite cliff.
  • A woman wearing blue overalls and a broad-brimmed hat crouches over a tube of mud, retrieved by a peat coring tool.
  • A view down a spiral staircase, the steps carpeted in red and with white-painted edges.
  • A sunlit, castellated lighthouse on a rocky outcrop, with a blue sky and white clouds in the background.

A series of plans for major National Nature Reserves that help to make sure both visitors and wildlife are happy.

People like wildlife – but wildlife doesn’t always like people. The demand for access to wild places means that site managers need to welcome visitors and offer them a meaningful, high quality experience, while at the same time ensuring that the environment is protected. Planning is an essential tool in achieving this.

Working in partnership with Aaron Lawton Associates, I developed plans for some of Scotland’s most significant National Nature Reserves: Muir of Dinnet, the Isle of May, Rum, Beinn Eighe, Forvie and Caerlaverock. Each plan depends on spending lots of time talking to the people who manage the reserve, getting to know its unique qualities and character, and researching the profile of the people who might visit.

The plans make imaginative proposals for future management and projects that will help make the reserves into places where visitors can find something remarkable, as well as flagship examples of conservation practice.