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Six Scottish sites in bid for world heritage status

Six locations across Scotland are aiming to be ranked alongside world-famous landmarks such as the Taj Mahal and Great Wall of China by bidding for Unesco World Heritage status.

Arbroath Abbey, the Forth Bridge, and the Flow Country – an area of peatlands in Caithness and Sutherland – have all answered the UK Government’s call to try to increase the country’s share of the prestigious heritage sites.

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They are joined by bids from the medieval univer-sity town and golf hub of St Andrews, the buildings of Charles Rennie Mackintosh in Glasgow, and Mousa, Old Scatness and Jarlshof on Shetland.

The six Scottish entries will be considered along with 32 other bids from across the UK – including overseas territories and crown dependencies.

The Scottish selection represents a mixture of cultural and natural heritage.

Arbroath Abbey, founded in 1178, is most famous for the 1320 Declaration of Arbroath, while the Flow Country is the largest area of blanket bog in the UK and home to a diverse ecosystem of plant and wildlife.

An independent expert panel will assess each bid with a new list of potential sites drawn up for submission to Unesco in 2011.

Michael Moore, the Secretary of State for Scotland, said: “All these sites have something special that draws people to them and they are recognisable across the world. I am delighted that so many of Scotland’s attractions have stepped forward and answered the UK Government’s call for world heritage status.

“Scotland has a rich history that we should all be proud to celebrate.”

Scotland already boasts a number of heritage sites, including St Kilda, the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh, and New Lanark.

Heritage sites around the globe include the Statue of Liberty in New York, the Great Pyramids of Giza and Red Square in Moscow.

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