16 December 2013
The Isle of Coll in the Inner Hebrides has become only the second site in Scotland to be awarded Dark Sky status following years of work by the Coll Dark Skies Group. ...
The Isle of Coll in the Inner Hebrides has become only the second site in Scotland to be awarded Dark Sky status following years of work by the Coll Dark Skies Group.
The recognition means that the island joins Galloway Forest, which was the country's first Dark Sky site, with Coll becoming Scotland's first Dark Sky Community, a status that the Coll Dark Skies Group hope will help to encourage tourism during the winter months. The group's spokesperson Tony Oliver said: 'The first winter on Coll I was in awe of the night sky, it’s on a par with many of the high arctic regions I’d visited.
Soon I discovered Coll had some real star gazers which eventually led, over many pints, to where we are today.
The island community is very nature aware and needed little encouragement to offer support. Now we have the opportunity to share our darkness with others and I hope anyone visiting Coll off-season will be equally inspired.'
For several years, the Dark Skies Group has been measuring Coll's night skies using a sky quality meter, recording skies almost completely clear of light pollution after work to adjust or refit lights which were causing problems to star gazers.
Coll Dark Skies will officially launch on 27 January 2014 and Argyll and Bute Council spokesperson said: 'The Isle of Coll is a unique island in many ways, not least of which is its beautiful countryside and sea views but also the lack of light pollution. I can think of no better island in the inner Hebrides to gain the Dark Skies accolade.'
For more on the Group, visit the Coll Dark Skies Group website.
(Image copyright Coll Dark Skies Group)
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