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UK backs Little Cayman for UNESCO protection

Environment 10 Apr, 2023 Follow News

UK backs Little Cayman for UNESCO protection

Yellowtail Grunts

Little Cayman Bloody Bay Wall

Marine Parks on Little Cayman Boundary Maps 1 April 2019

The UK government has just published a list of seven sites in the UK and its Overseas Territories which it would like to have considered for UNESCO World Heritage status, and Little Cayman’s Marine Parks and Protected Areas are included in the seven sites. This is the only site on the list not located in the UK.

UNESCO World Heritage status is a highly prized designation given by the United Nations agency that is only awarded to the world’s most important places of cultural, historical or scientific significance, 33 of which are in the UK. England’s Stonehenge, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Jamaica’s Blue Mountains and Guatemala’s Galapagos Islands are well-known UNESCO World Heritage sites.

The BBC reports that five new sites have been added to the UK government's ‘Tentative List’, which is published about every 10 years and sets out the locations it is felt have the best chance of succeeding in being included.

The UK government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport confirmed the new sites are:

York, a city of rich history left behind by its Anglo-Saxon, Viking and Norman inhabitants, with its famous York Minster

Birkenhead Park in Merseyside, which opened in 1847 and was a pioneering project to bring greenery to urban environments, the inspiration behind New York's Central Park

The Zenith of Iron Age Shetland, a collection of three ancient settlements dating back thousands of years

The East Atlantic Flyway, a migratory bird route over western parts of Europe including Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Kent. It joins the list in recognition of its vital importance to bird populations and wildlife as an area that sees huge transient bird populations pass through every year

The Little Cayman Marine Parks and Protected Areas, put forward for their exceptional importance to marine biodiversity and their incredible natural beauty.

Two other sites submitted their full nominations to Unesco earlier this year, and remain on the government's Tentative List. They are The Flow Country, a large area of peatland across Caithness and Sutherland in the north of Scotland which plays a crucial role in supporting biodiversity, and the Gracehill Moravian Church Settlement in Ballymena, Northern Ireland, the BBC reported.

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