The Cairngorms: contested mountains

Monday 13 August 2001

The first ever historical study into one of Scotland’s most bitter landuse and environmental conflicts has been produced by a University of St Andrews historian.

Dr Robert Lambert’s Contested Mountains is based on a wealth of archival material dating back to the late 19th century, most of which has never been published before and which provides the background to some of the most heated present-day debates surrounding the Cairngorms such as national parks, access and the right-to-roam, and the public battles between traditional uses of land and the new landuses of recreation, conservation and tourism development.

The book, which has already sparked interest within the Scottish Executive, Scottish Natural Heritage, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, the National Trust for Scotland and the Cairngorms Partnership, focuses on the remarkable changes in attitudes to nature and the use of land in the Cairngorms region since 1880.

Topical issues covered include the rights of way debate, the rise of the Highland tourism industry into the modern era, attempts to protect the osprey in Scotland, the history and development of the national park debate in Scotland (including why Scotland is still without a national park) and the history of the largest nature reserve in Britain, the Cairngorms NNR.

Magnus Magnusson KBE, who provided the foreword said, “It is a book which will be welcomed by anyone and everyone with an interest in the Cairngorms, in the environment and in the long- continuing tensions between the imperatives of nature conservation on the one hand and the demands of popular recreation and business development on the other¿.”

Dr Lambert is a Senior Research and Teaching Fellow at the Centre for Environmental History and Policy at the University of St Andrews. From 1998 until 2000, he held a Leverhulme Special Research Fellowship in British environmental history and, from 1999 until 2000, served as first President of the European Society for Environmental History. He is on the editorial collective of the international journal Environment and History and has published in the fields of environmental history and the history of outdoor recreation and tourism. Recent books he has edited include Species History in Scotland (1998) and, with Professor T C Smout, Rothiemurchus: Nature and People on a Highland Estate (1999).

Copies of Contested Mountains can be ordered from The White Horse Press, 1 Strond, Isle of Harris, HS5 3UD – telephone/fax 01859 520204 or email [email protected].


NOTE TO EDITORS – Dr Lambert is available on telephone 01334 463303 (office), 01334 477869 (home) or via email ral2@st-

Issued by Beattie Media on behalf of the University of St Andrews For more information please contact Claire Grainger on 01334 462530, 07730 415 015 or email [email protected] Ref: cairngorms/standrews/chg/14aug2001

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