News, stories and reports from Forestry Commission Scotland and the National Forest Estate

Skye community first to acquire land under the Community Asset Transfer Scheme

The Skye community are the first to acquire land under the Community Asset Transfer Scheme (CATS). CATS was set up to implement the new rights for communities under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 to purchase, lease or use National Forest Estate land if it provides benefits to the local community.

Minginish Community Hall Association (MCHA) have purchased 12.3ha at the Fairy Pools Car Park, Skye which will allow the community to expand the current parking facilities to accommodate 137 vehicles, to alleviate long term problems for visitors and residents, and to install additional visitor facilities.

fairy pools

Photo © Russell Sherwood

The Fairy Pools are a series of beautiful crystal clear pools on the Allt Coir a’Mhadaidh within the Cuillin Hills National Scenic Area. These famous pools entice visitors from all over the world for wild swimming, for walks and picnics and to photograph them against the backdrop of the Black Cuillin.

The project will: reduce the level of traffic congestion caused by poor parking; improve the lives of local residents by improving access; reduce the environmental damage caused by vehicles and tourists; and provide new employment opportunities.

Jack Mackay, FES Community and Visitor Services Manager, said: “We’re very pleased that our new Community Asset Transfer Scheme is supporting the local community and tourism on Skye through this important transfer of land.

“This was a strong evidence-based asset transfer request, which showed how community ownership of a relatively low value public asset can deliver significant benefits to the community and visitors to Skye.”

fairypoolsviewhires