Plans for a new visitor centre as a gateway to one of the UK’s “most spectacular” waterfalls can now progress after a £923,000 funding boost.
The National Trust for Scotland (NTS) plans to create new facilities at the Corrieshalloch Gorge National Nature Reserve in Wester Ross in the Highlands in a £2.3m project.
The charity plans to build a new visitor centre including toilet facilities and a blue loo for campervans, improve parking at the beauty spot and expand the path network.
NTS said that £923,277 from the Natural and Cultural Heritage Fund has been awarded to the project while the remaining funding will come from the charity’s restricted reserves.
Clea Warner, NTS general manager for the north west, said: “Thanks to this fantastic funding, our charity can continue to invest in the Wester Ross area.
“These new facilities will be the gateway to the rich natural heritage of the Gorge and the Falls of Measach, one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the UK and will make a major contribution to the local area, vastly improving the welcome we can offer the increasing number of visitors who are heading north.
“As a national nature reserve, Corrieshalloch Gorge requires intensive protection. These new facilities will help us to accommodate the growing number of visitors while ensuring the site gets the important conservation care that a place of such importance needs.”
Corrieshalloch Gorge has seen a 60% increase in visitor numbers since 2012, with almost 140,000 visitors in 2017/18.
The £5m Natural and Cultural Heritage Fund is led by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH).
It is funded through the Scottish Government’s European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and supports projects that showcase the scenery, wildlife and culture of the Highlands and Islands.
SNH chief executive Francesca Osowska said: “A key priority for SNH is to help ensure tourism and other sectors benefit from, and invest in, Scotland’s high quality environment.
“Nature and culture are closely linked in the Highlands & Islands, and in many places they are central to the local economy, maintaining rural populations, jobs and skills.
“This project will bring significant benefits to the local area for years to come and give visitors even more to enjoy in these iconic areas of Scotland.”