Communities are being encouraged to share their views on the future management of Marine Protected Areas around the islands.
The Seas of the Outer Hebrides (SEASOH) project will be running a series of community events between February 7 and 12.
The events will form the next step of the project, which aims to build consensus on the future management of Marine Protected Areas around the islands. The project team want to hear from members of the public about what they feel is important in terms of management of MPAs in the Outer Hebrides.
These designations protect a diverse array of wildlife, from puffins at the Shiant Isles and at the World Heritage Site of St Kilda, to biodiverse sea bed reefs in Loch nam Madadh and the Sound of Barra.
The SEASOH project team are working with local artists to ensure the events are creative and inclusive.
Charlie Main, Seas of the Outer Hebrides project officer, said: ‘As we celebrate Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters, we want to hear what communities feel is important to them about the seas around our islands.
‘The sessions are informal and open to people of all ages and backgrounds – everyone’s opinion matters. We’ll have some family-friendly activities and free refreshments available to all so please come along to have a chat and give your views.’
Events will be held at the following locations with two sessions running from 2-4pm and 6-8pm each day. Daytime and evening sessions are the same.
Fri 7 February – South Uist – Talla Chidhe, Lochboisdale
Sat 8 February – Barra – Castlebay College
Mon 10 February – North Uist – Lochmaddy Community Hall
Mon 10 February – Harris – Leverburgh Village Hall
Tue 11 February – Uig, Lewis – Uig Community Centre
Wed 12 February – Stornoway – An lanntair
The core aim of the SEASOH project is to deliver a regional management plan for the Outer Hebrides marine region, putting communities and people at the heart of the process and building consensus on the future management of Marine Protected Areas around the islands.
The project is supported by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Marine Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI).