The Save Coul Links Conservation Coalition was formed by Buglife, Butterfly Conservation Scotland, Marine Conservation Society, National Trust for Scotland, Plantlife, RSPB Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust to help save Coul Links – an internationally important wildlife site, protected by national, European and international nature designations – from the lasting damage that will occur if it is developed in to a golf course.
If this shocking development is allowed to go-ahead it would have terrible consequences for the natural environment. Once these unique habitats are lost, they cannot be replaced. This development would set a terrible precedent. If triple-protected Coul Links is allowed to be destroyed for a golf course – is anywhere safe from development?
Coul Links, in the north of Scotland is a beautiful, natural coastal dune system, home to many species of wildlife. It contains some of the rarest habitats in Europe and is protected at local, national and European levels. A range of species can be found there throughout the year including small blue butterflies, skylarks, otters, migrant geese, and plants such as coral root orchid and purple milk vetch. Coul Links is also home to a colony of coastal juniper trees and the internationally endangered Fonseca’s seed fly which is only found in East Sutherland.
A golf course proposal for the site threatens to destroy this unique collection of dune habitats. The coastal dune habitat is one of the last of its kind left in Scotland and would be lost forever should the proposals get the go-ahead.
Unfortunately the proposals were consented by the Highland Council, against the advice of Council officials, SNH and numerous environmental groups. The Scottish Government have ‘called-in’ the controversial golf proposals for further examination at a public inquiry due to natural heritage issues of ‘national importance’.
We plan to present witnesses at the public inquiry that will outline the national and international environmental importance of Coul Links. We are looking to raise funds to support the work of our legal team for the public inquiry.
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