The need to “designate” the remains of an historic shipwreck off the north west Sutherland coast has resulted in Scotland’s first tranche of Historic Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) being announced today.
The well-preserved 17th, or early 18th, century merchant shipwreck was found close to the harbour of Drumbeg by a local scallop diver, who wishes to remain anonymous.
Historic Scotland’s marine archaeologists visited the site, with the diver, during summer last year to assess his discovery and concluded that the wreck is an historic asset of national importance, meriting statutory protection.
Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, has also outlined a further six proposals for Historic MPAs around Scotland’s coast.
These sites (including one at Kinlochbervie) are currently safeguarded by the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 and will have their protection transferred to the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 – the first time the MPA powers of this Act have been used.