Finlay Carson MSP

Galloway and West Dumfries

Carson disappointed over lack of National Park assurance

Galloway and West Dumfries MSP Finlay Carson has expressed his disappointment after SNP Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham again gave no assurances over the creation of a Galloway National Park.

The Conservative MSP had been pleased last week, following the Galloway National Park conference, when First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said “full consideration” would be given to progressing plans for a Kingdom of Galloway national park.

However, at today’s General Questions, the Environment Secretary said there are no current plans for new national parks and also outlined how Galloway is competing with other areas.

Furthermore, the Environment Secretary said that financial considerations which have to be taken into account, have become exacerbated.

Mr Carson believes the SNP Government need to clarify their position on progressing a Galloway National Park, which Mr Carson says has the overwhelming backing of local people.

Commenting Finlay Carson MSP said: “I was disappointed that the SNP’s Environment Secretary could not follow up on the positive backing from the First Minister last week.

“Instead, I was given a very lukewarm answer, still stressing about how Galloway is only one of a number areas who wish to have the national park designation.

“I respect that, but the case being made in Galloway has overwhelming backing as shown last week at the conference in Gatehouse of Fleet, where there was standing room only.

“A Kingdom of Galloway National Park has the potential to be a major boost to the rural economy in terms of jobs and attracting tourists.

“However, we need the SNP Government to clarify exactly what their position is regarding the proposals; so that long-standing campaigners know exactly what support they have.”