The culture and prosperity of Coigach and Assynt has been linked to the sea for centuries but as sea health has diminished many of those links have been lost. This project builds on previous work undertaken, particularly that of the Highland Seashore Project, to give greater prominence to the local marine environment.

The project area includes the Wester Ross Marine Protected Area (MPA), designated in 2014, one of around 30 across Scotland. MPAs form part of a network of nature conservation sites around the Scottish coast aimed to protect and aide recovery of important habitats and species.

Several groups, including Ullapool Sea Savers, were involved in developing the project. All have strong ties with the local community and a keen interest in marine issues.

The aims of the project were to:

  • Generate greater awareness and knowledge of Coigach and Assynt’s rich marine heritage and how people can engage more actively with it.
  • Build a greater appreciation and desire to protect this important asset from an environmental, social and economic perspective.

Over the last two years of the scheme Ullapool Sea Savers (USS) have carried out a number of seaweed surveys through the Marine Project, augmented by further biodiversity work through the CALLP Community Grant Scheme. You can see the results of these surveys on their website at

Coigach Heritage has also published a book called ‘Coigach Fisheries’, compiled and edited by Angus Macleod. This booklet gives a brief glimpse into the history of the local fishing industry, particularly the salmonbag-net fishing, through the in-sights and experiences of some of those involved, and in their own words. The booklet is available in local Coigach shops, and can be mail-ordered for £6 from 


Project timeline

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Funding partners