SLE's Vice-Chair (Policy) writes open letter to Cllr. Bell of KirriemuirGeneral News
Dee Ward, Chairman of the Angus Glens Moorland Group and Vice-Chair (Policy) of Scottish Land & Estates, has written an open letter to Cllr. Bell of Kirriemuir, inviting her to visit his estate to see for herself the important conservation and biodiversity work which takes place, following her motion to the SNP conference taking place at the end of November. In her motion she is calling for “an end to the circle of destruction of driven grouse shooting in Scotland”.
In the letter Dee says “In the last 15 years we have planted over 250,000 trees, created 5 km of new hedges, restored 1.2km of river habitat and just restored 40 hectares of peatland. We have independently verified 103 bird species living here including nesting golden eagles, peregrines, merlins, buzzards, ring ouzels, dotterel, golden plover, curlew, redshank, lapwing, snipe, woodcock, we have a population of over 200 black grouse, 3000 mountain hares, as well as huge quantities of skylark, twite, goldfinch, wheatear, amongst many others.
“Grouse shooting is not all that happens on this land as you claim. We are all about integrated land use and we produce renewal electricity, grow trees, capture carbon, store carbon, mitigate flooding, improve wetland habitat, farm sheep, have holiday cottages, run an events space, conduct wildlife tours, and let fishing and stalking as well as grouse shooting, and run a B&B for country sports visitors from Europe and the rest of the UK. All this brings in badly needed money into the glens where there is limited other business and employment opportunities.”