25 Jun 2022

Aiming to become the UK's next
natural World Heritage Site

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Welcome to the Flow Country – the most intact and extensive blanket bog system in the world. Stretching across Caithness and Sutherland in the far north of Scotland this vast expanse of blanket bog comprises a complex set of interlinked pool systems and micro features that not only host an eye-catching flora and fauna but also play a vital role in our defence against the effects of climate change.

From above the land is a mottled pattern of peat and pools, their colours shifting like an opal. But look a little closer and you’ll find a world of amazing plants, rare birds, and a place to be inspired by peace and space.

Due to the global significance of the Flow Country it has long been suggested it should be nominated for World Heritage status (since 1988!) on the basis of the blanket bog environment and the species that call it home. The current importance of peatlands in fighting the climate crisis has raised its profile further. The Peatland Partnership is now preparing a full World Heritage Site Nomination Dossier which will be submitted to UNESCO in late 2022. It is hoped this accolade will bring educational, social and economic benefits to the area, as well as ensuring this very special environment is maintained for future generations.

About the Flow Country

The Flow Country is a vast expanse of blanket bog in the North of Scotland. Blanket bog is a rare type of peatland which forms only in cool places with plenty of rain and covers the landscape like a blanket. 

Peatlands are for people as well as wildlife. It’s hard to grow crops on the wet bog itself, but in the wide, shallow valleys that cut through it – called straths in Scotland – people have lived and farmed for thousands of years.

Today, The Flow Country is being managed to encourage community and economic development, as well as to benefit the peatland environment. You’ll find thriving communities along the straths and around the edges of the rolling moorland, and fascinating stories of how people live and work alongside the peat bog.



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