The team behind Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park were busy last week getting the word out about their work during National Parks Week 2017.

The park celebrated its fifteenth birthday just before National Parks Week got under way and the Park Authority – who are in charge of its running and operation – have been keen to highlight recent work with local communities, including the award of over £16,000 to 12 community development trusts to help support local projects and groups.

It also played a role in the Balloch charrette, which allowed local businesses and residents to have a say in the future development of Balloch town centre.

Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park is one of only two National Parks in Scotland and only 15 across the whole UK, with the park’s rangers spending around 4,792 days delivering tasks including running the visitor centre and conducting land and water patrols.

Meanwhile, the park’s team of volunteers dedicated nearly 13,000 hours in total in delivering conservation and ranger tasks.

Gordon Watson, chief executive of Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, said: “The National Park is a truly special place with some of the most spectacular scenery in Scotland right on the doorstep of more than half of country’s population.

“Our job as the Park Authority is to lead on looking after this amazing place and the communities within it as well as encouraging people to enjoy the area and all the benefits it offers.

“I’m very proud of the work that we do and am grateful for the support we get from all our partners and local community.”

West Dunbartonshire’s MP Martin Docherty recently celebrated the work of the National Park on the occasion of its 15th birthday by raising a motion in Parliament and paying tribute to its role in the surrounding local economies.

Mr Docherty, of the SNP, said: “Loch Lomond and the Trossachs became Scotland’s first National Park 15 years ago and I was delighted to have the opportunity to recognise this important milestone in parliament.

“Visitors from across Scotland and all over the world come to enjoy the stunning natural beauty of our National Park and West Dunbartonshire benefits greatly from having this right on our doorstep.

“I wish to extend a very happy birthday to the park and thank all of the staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to ensure it remains a safe, peaceful and welcoming environment for all who visit.”