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Arbroath Abbey wins gold for Green tourism


Arbroath Abbey visitor centre today presented with a 'gold' Green Tourism Business Award by Deputy First Minister Jim Wallace.

The award recognises the positive steps that Historic Scotland has taken to reduce the centre's environmental impact.

Examples of this good practice include a 'green' roof, which is planted with a sedum (an evergreen plant) on a mineral wool blanket to support the plant and store moisture, which enhances the insulation of the building.

Arbroath Abbey and visitor centre

Mr Wallace was given a tour of the centre as part of a series of visits he undertook today in Angus. It opened in 2001 and has seen visitor numbers to the Abbey rise from 6,634 in 2000 to 14,026 last year.

The MInister said:

"Tourism contributes £4 billion to the Scottish economy each year and it is important to ensure that this industry can grow sustainably.

"This award recognises the success of Arbroath Abbey visitor centre in combining a successful attraction with green practises. Indeed, it is a national leader with the roof being the first of its kind in Scotland.

"The new visitor centre is already proving to be a good attraction, with visitor numbers more than doubling between 2000 and 2002. It is helping bring Scottish history to life."

Mr Wallace later visited the Cliffburn estate in Arbroath, where he met representatives from Cliffburn Area Residents (CAR) group, and went on a walking tour of the area.

The Minister went on to visit a number of projects in Forfar which are designed to tackle the problem of anti-social behaviour, including Web Project Angus, which deals with tackling substance misuse, the Angus Restorative Justice Service, and the Safer Angus For Everyone (SAFE) project.

Mr Wallace said:

"The work being undertaken in Forfar is a good example of positive community steps to tackle anti-social behaviour.

"This strategy, like the Executive, recognises that most young people play a positive role in society. These projects help deal with the minority of people, of all ages, who do not."

Mr Wallace also visited Montrose company Merpro too. Merpro employs 175 people in Montrose in designing, manufacturing and supplying equipment to the oil and gas industry.