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Call for National Tartan Register to be hosted in Highlands

Issued: 21 Aug 2007

The Convener of The Highland Council Councillor Sandy Park is calling on the Scottish Government to consider locating the proposed new National Tartan Register in the Highlands.

Councillor Park has written to First Minister Alex Salmond warmly welcoming the Scottish Government's intention to create a National Tartan Register to 'protect, promote and preserve one of Scotland's most iconic and valuable assets'.

Councillor Park has also written to Willie Roe, Chairman of Highlands and Islands Enterprise, seeking his support the bid to facilitate and host the Register.

He said: "The Highlands is a natural place to consider locating this new venture, which will prove a significant tourist attraction and create a number of jobs. Not only is the Highlands the geographical centre of the historic legacy of tartan but we also boast a wealth of experience and knowledge of tartan."

The Convener was pleased to respond to an approach from Councillor Kenneth MacLeod, Inverness, who had initiated the call for the new Register being hosted in the Highlands.

Councillor MacLeod said: "I recognise that a lot of the manufacturing of tartan is conducted outwith the Highlands, but nonetheless the clan system and roots from which tartan has come is within the Highlands and Islands and I think we have a good claim to have the Register established here."

Councillor MacLeod has also spoken to Mr James Scarlett, the author of several books on tartan and a worldwide authority on tartan who lives near Inverness. Mr Scarlett is also very keen that the Register be established in the Highlands. Mr Scarlett holds one of the only two uncorrupted copies of the Register compiled by the Old Scottish Tartan Society.

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