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Scenic Routes in the National Park
It's not just the destination, it's the journey too...
Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park is proud to nurture bright, young design talent to bring you a fresh viewpoint on some of the Park's most breathtaking locations.
Scotland’s trunk roads are not only designed to get you to your destination as quickly as possible. Some of the roads through the National Park are now beautiful drives with that little bit extra. The National Park has made it even easier for you to enjoy your journey through the Park by installing uniquely designed viewpoints within the Park’s stunning landscape.
Hidden gems you'll never forget
If you are looking for something a bit out of the ordinary these hidden gems are within easy reach. These stunning artworks offer you an opportunity for some breathing space when traveling through the National Park. Funded by the Scottish Government, these brand new vistas launch a national Scenic Routes initiative to create picturesque stopping points to break up a road trip, allowing travellers to enjoy the best vantage points near our road network.
New viewpoint at Inveruglas - An Ceann Mòr - translated from Gaelic as ‘large headland'
‘An Ceann Mòr’ at Inveruglas on the banks of Loch Lomond is the final installation of the first phase of the Scottish Scenic Routes pilot project. It was officially unveiled by Richard Lochhead MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment on 13 May 2015.
Designed by young architectural practice, BTE, An Ceann Mòr has been designed to the highest standards of accessibility and sustainability with people who have limited mobility able to venture through the “tunnel” to be presented with spectacular views of the Arrochar Alps in the west across Loch Lomond to Ben Lomond in the middle distance.
The journey to the view point starts in the visitor centre car park, following a new accessible path through the trees and then through the new structure where the panoramic view is then revealed. Visitors can then climb up to the top of the viewpoint, sit and take in the stunning elevated views of Loch Lomond and the surrounding mountains.
31 steps provide the same vista from an elevated position. At eight metres high, pyramid-shaped An Ceann Mòr is set to be the focus of many selfies!
Sloc nan Sìtheanach Faerie Hollow
designed and built by Angus Ritchie and Daniel Tyler
LookOut is opposite Monachyle Mhor, on the land where the shores of Loch Voil meet Loch Doine, past Balquhidder up the glen of the A84. Find out more
Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Scenic Route
Download the map here
Each of these bespoke designs complements the surrounding landscape, offering magical viewpoints created by the very best of Scotland’s architecture talent, all of whom competed to design these pilot projects for Scotland’s Scenic Routes initiative.
Situated off the A82 and A84, together these unique locations also offers a variety of culinary and activity based experiences along some of the most beautiful stretches of roads in the National Park.
Slow down and enjoy life. It is not only the scenery you miss by going too fast. You also miss the sense of where you are going and why...
John Kennedy designed “Woven Sound” to provide a sheltered space that allows visitors to experience the Falls of Falloch at closer range – providing a brand new viewpoint to take in the thundering Falls. Cantilevering over the edge of the water, the shelter takes the form of a long trellis of intricately woven-together steel rods that weaves its way between existing trees to avoid damaging the natural beauty of the site creating a sculptural, subtle form. This robust, inexpensive material allows the shelter to have a very discrete presence, which doesn't detract from the Falls themselves. A diary entry from Dorothy Wordsworth recalling the numerous Romantic writers and painters who visited the Falls in the early 19th century is etched into the dappled steel at the viewpoint.
Did you know?
Falls of Falloch is a beautiful waterfall and a popular beauty spot for picnics. Standing at 30 feet high, the falls are an abrupt step in the passage of the River Falloch as it makes its way down Glen Falloch towards Loch Lomond at Ardlui. Falls of Falloch is a truly entrancing site set in a peaceful glen.
See & Do
Photo opportunities are abundant - further up Glen Falloch, the oldest southerly remnants of ancient Caledonian pinewood forest are in view look out for golden eagles and red deer.
Food and drink are available at Tarbet, Inveruglas, Ardlui, Inverarnan and Crianlarich and picnic areas can be found in Tarbet, Inveruglas and Crianlarich.
Why not walk a section of West Highland Way from Inverarnan to Crianlarich – 6 1/2 miles (10.5 km) to see stunning views of Falls of Falloch.
This mirrored cabin, wood-framed ‘lookout’ pavilion has benches built into it framing three mesmerizing views of the landscape whilst reflecting the surrounding vistas on its mirrored surfaces. Mirrored stainless steel was applied to birch ply sheets then fixed to the lookout's exterior surfaces, creating shifting reflections that help the structure blend in with its surroundings.
Did you know?
The 18th century Scottish patriot, folk hero and outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor lived and died in Balquhidder and is buried in local church graveyard. The tranquil glen is overlooked by the dramatic mountain terrain of the Braes of Balquhidder, at the head of Loch Voil. At its western end the mountainous country north of Loch Katrine, the inspiration of Sir Walter Scott’s legendary 'Lady of the Lake' poem.
See & Do
Approaching Balquhidder the north / south glen of Strathyre suddenly changes direction to the west / east glen that holds Loch Voil. During winter Loch Lubnaig and Loch Voil sometimes flood to become one large loch, 'Loch Occasional'. Balquhidder Glen is also popular for fishing, nature watching and walking on the surrounding mountains.
Food and drink stops and picnic sites can be found in Kilmahog, Lubnaig, Strathyre, Kingshouse, Balquhidder and Lochearnhead.
The viewpoint nestles between the shrubs in a natural hollow in the landscape with stunning views across Loch Lubnaig to Ben Ledi.
This site, overlooking Loch Lubnaig, called for a place to stop, sit and linger to take in the surroundings. A natural hollow in the ground provided the solution. 'Sloc' is Scots Gaelic for 'grassy hollow', and 'Sìtheanach' represents 'faerie people', who according to our mythology reside at places of peace and tranquility. The specialist metalwork at your feet in the hollow, features a verse by local bard Alexander Campbell. "Now Winter's wind sweeps" depicts mans place in natural cycles, and encourages one to appreciate what is around them." This is the perfect place to do just that.
Did you know?
The 3 mile (5km) long Loch Lubnaig (Gaelic for the ‘Crooked Loch’), lies between the pretty bustling town of Callander and Strathyre.
See & Do
Once you have crossed the Highland Boundary Fault from Callander to Strathyre you will experience a truly highland landscape. Beyond Kimahog the road twists and undulates through the Pass of Leny, waterfalls and rapids in the gorge below. You can see an abundance of woodland plants in the dappled shade beneath the surrounding trees. The steep, craggy mountainsides of Ben Ledi and Ardnandave Hill dominate the view from Lubnaig Beag.
Two new National Park visitor sites on the shores of the Loch Lubnaig are now open. At the larger of the two sites nearer Strathyre, you can make use of new barbecue stands, picnic benches and toilets.
Recruitment Fayre for Exciting New Conservation Project
3rd February 2016
A recruitment fayre for a new conservation project - The Mountains & The People – will be held in Balloch on Tuesday 9th of February. Its aim is to recruit 9 people to work on this unique partnership project in a mix of roles - from those interested in starting a career in practical conservation to experienced education and countryside volunteering coordinators.
The Mountains & The People is a five-year initiative that aims to engage the people of Scotland in the conservation of the , Loch Lomond & The Trossachs and Cairngorms National Parks. As well as protecting mountain environments through the improvement of over 125km of upland paths, it will also offer volunteering, education and training activities that will help inspire the next generation of conservationists.
Posts on offer at the recruitment fayre include a Project Officer responsible for Education & Volunteering as well as this year’s intake of 8path work trainees. The trainees will be offered paid training in Environmental Conservation to SVQ level 2, as well as real life experience of working in the industry.
Activity Project Manager Tom Wallace said:
“This is a great opportunity for people to meet the team behind the project face to face, hear more about the exciting opportunities we have planned for the year ahead and to ask questions about the jobs on offer.”
The Fayre will be held on Tuesday 9th of February at the Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park Authority Headquarters, Carrochan Road, Balloch. Doors will be open from 4:30pm till 8pm and anyone interested in hearing more about these 9 roles or any other aspects of the project is encouraged to ‘drop in’ for an informal chat. Every hour on the hour a short film will be shown about the project and the experiences of past trainees. Refreshments will be served throughout.
The Mountains & The People has received over £3m in funding from the Heritage Lottery fund alongside funding and support from project partners at Forestry Commission Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and both the Loch Lomond & Trossachs and Cairngorms National Park Authorities this project is led by the Cairngorms Outdoor Access Trust.
For more information on the job opportunities mentioned above and for further details on the Recruitment Fayre visit www.cairngormsoutdooraccess.org.uk/jobs
National Park Partnership Plan - Annual Review 2014
National Park Partnership Plan - Annual Review 2014
This review sets out how much progress has been made towards delivering actions and achieving outcomes in the second year of the National Park Partnership Plan.
Click here for pdf (3.3Mb)
Help shape the vision for Balloch's future
11 January 2016
LIVEinBalloch is a new initiative, which will help shape the future of Balloch and you are being invited to get involved.
Funding has been secured from Scottish Government for West Dunbartonshire Council and Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park working with Scottish Enterprise, to run a design charrette which is an intensive workshop that engages local people in the design of their community.
The aim of the charrette is to involve people who live, work, visit and invest in the area in planning what future development in Balloch might look like. It will also investigate how Balloch can become better connected to the wider Vale of Leven and act as an economic generator for the area.
This project follows on from two successful charrettes held in Dumbarton and Clydebank last year, which both now have an action plan being progressed. In addition to these a number of charrettes were held across the National Park area between 2011 and 2014 which have shaped the new Plan for future development and are successfully helping to support delivery of community aspirations . Examples include the new improved cycle/footpath linking Drymen and Balmaha and the recently announced £1.55 million funding from Heritage Lottery for the Callander Landscape Partnership.
Councillor Patrick McGlinchey, the Council’s Convener for Infrastructure, Regeneration and Economic Development, said: “It is great news that a charrette will be held in Balloch which will bring designers, planners and other specialists together to work directly with the public to develop a plan for the area. There is so much potential in Balloch, with its stunning location and as part of the National Park, so this is a really exciting project to be involved in. The two design charrettes held last year were extremely well attended and have led to detailed action plans being developed that are now being implemented. I would urge as many residents as possible to be part of this project and play their part in shaping the future of Balloch.”
The Balloch charrette will be held in February and March, when people who live, work, visit and invest in the area will be asked to give their ideas and suggestions on how to improve the village and benefit from its status as a visitor attraction.
Significant public engagement has already been carried out to develop the National Park’s new Local Development Plan –through the LIVE Park campaign and this will help to provide focus for the design charrette.
Stuart Mearns, Head of Planning & Rural Development at Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, said:
“Having undertaken extensive engagement across the National Park in recent years, this joint initiative with the Council provides a great opportunity to continue the focus on supporting communities and businesses in delivering their aspirations for a better place to Live Invest Visit and Experience.”.
“We really want people to grab this chance to get involved to help develop a shared Vision and and how this can be achieved collectively. People tend to feed back on what they don’t like or don’t want to see but we’re keen to stress that this is an opportunity for people to say what they do like or highlight changes they do want to see”.
Three key sites have been identified in the Park’s Local Development Plan which will play a crucial part in the future of Balloch and will form the basis for discussion at the charrette, as well as how we ensure joined up thinking between these physical developments over design, transport, car parking amongst other issues.
West Riverside – the charrette will consider how this significant area of land could be developed in terms of tourism and leisure to bring the most benefit to the village.
Balloch Castle and Country Park – consideration of how to best use these important assets, including potential public realm improvements.
Woodbank House – look at how this derelict A listed building could be brought back into use for the benefit of the village.
Consideration will also be given to improving connections within Balloch and the wider Vale of Leven, and to how important gateways such as the bus and railway station can be improved.
Further details of the charrette will be available throughout January and February and you can keep up to date with the latest news via Facebook www.facebook.com/ourlivepark or on Twitter www.twitter.com/ourlivepark
Proposed Plan Documents
On this page you can view the Proposed Local Development Plan and all of the accompanying documents.
The Plan, which guides new development and sets out the planning policies which will be used to determine planning applications, covers the period 2017 until 2027. Once adopted, this Plan will replace our existing local plan and will be updated regularly (every five years) so it is kept up to date.
You can view the Proposed Plan using by downloading the document below. Please note that the consultation period ended on Monday 29 June 2015.
Download the Proposed Local Development Plan (by clicking on the links below)
Proposed Local Development Plan Sections 1 & 2 9.11 MB
Proposed Local Development Plan Section 3 (Part 1) 8.43 MB
Proposed Local Development Plan Section 3 (Part 2) 7.29 MB
Proposed Local Development Plan Section 3 (Part 3) 6.70 MB
Proposed Local Development Plan Section 4 1.38 MB
A number of documents accompany this Plan:
Draft Supplementary Guidance and Draft Planning Guidance
These explain in more detail how the policy or strategy requirements of the Plan can be met. Supplementary Guidance forms part of the Plan while Planning Guidance provides wider advice on a range of topics to support the Plan and this list may be expanded in the future.
You can view these documents below:
Supplementary Guidance (draft)
Draft Housing Supplementary Guidance 7.82 MB
Design and Placemaking 16.93 MB
West Loch Lomondside Rural Development Framework 8.42 MB
Buchanan South Rural Development Framework 8.75 MB
Other Supporting Documents
There are also a number of background documents which help provide context and support the Proposed Plan. You can view these below:
Proposed Plan Population and Housing Background Paper 1.13 MB
Habitats Regulations Appraisal 2.08 MB
Action Programme 792.44 KB
Monitoring Statement (21st May update) 644.52 KB
Main Issues Report Verbatim Comments March 2015 4.31 MB
Additional Sites Verbatim Report February 2015 7.05 MB
Strategic Environmental Assessment 3.17 MB
You can also view all other documents relating to the Local Development Plan by visiting our document archive.
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