§ Mr. Dalyell
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he was consulted about the purchase by Fountain Forestry of Creag Meagaidh at a cost of £7.50 per hectare; and how much public money has been given to Fountain Forestry for preserving site of special scientific interest status at Creag Meagaidh.
§ Mr. John MacKay
My right hon. Friend was not consulted about the purchase, and there was no reason why he should have been as this was a private transaction.
I understand from my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment that no public money by way of compensation has been paid to Fountain Forestry. The company has given notice under section 28 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 that it intends to carry out forestry operations on part of the Creag Meagaidh site, and discussions are continuing between it and the Nature Conservancy Council.