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Scotland’s first Historic Marine Protected Areas in force

27 November 2013

The designation of seven Historic Marine Protected Areas (Historic MPAs) came into force on 1 November 2013 to protect historic wreck sites of national importance around Scotland’s coasts and seas. This was done following a period of consultation earlier in 2013.

The first Historic MPAs are:

Name  Location  Date of designation
DrumbegSutherland, Highland18 March 2013 under urgent procedures; re-designated 1 November 2013
MingaryArdnamurchan, Highland   1 November 2013
Kinlochbervie    Sutherland, Highland1 November 2013
CampaniaFirth of Forth, Fife1 November 2013
Out SkerriesShetland1 November 2013
DartmouthMorvern, Highland1 November 2013
Duart PointMull, Argyll and Bute1 November 2013

The Drumbeg Historic MPA was an urgent designation to protect an historic wreck discovered by scallop divers close to the harbour of Drumbeg, Sutherland.  Following consultation, this site of national importance has now been given permanent statutory protection..

The other Historic MPAs were previously protected under Section 1 of the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973. This legislation was repealed in Scotland on 1 November 2013. The sites include HMS Campania, a blue-riband-winning Cunard liner which was converted into an early aircraft carrier; and the Dartmouth, a fifth-rate Royal Navy frigate lost in the Sound of Mull in 1690.

Information about Historic MPAs and the areas that have been protected can be viewed on the Historic Scotland’s website

Notes for editors:

  • Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government charged with safeguarding the nation’s historic environment. The agency is fully accountable to Scottish Ministers and through them to the Scottish Parliament.

  • Historic Scotland is working with Marine Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage, and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee on the Scottish Marine Protected Areas Project – to make recommendations to Scottish Ministers on the selection and designation of a network of Marine Protected Areas in the seas around Scotland.

  • The designation of Historic MPAs supports the Scottish Government’s marine vision for clean, healthy, safe, productive, biologically diverse coastal and marine environments, managed to meet the long-term needs of people and nature.

  • 2013 is the Year of Natural Scotland, inspiring our people and our visitors to celebrate Scotland’s outstanding natural beauty, landscapes and biodiversity as Scotland prepares to welcome the world in 2014 and beyond. Find out more about Scotland’s outstanding natural beauty at

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For further information

John MacNeil
Media Relations Manager
Communications and Media
0131 668 8714 or 07854 366 827