A new web tool designed to help people with land, boundary and access enquiries has been launched on the Scotland’s Environment website.
The Land Information Search (LIS) is a user-friendly, map-based tool that allows people to search for data relating to an area of land they have identified and wish to know more about.
The practical uses for the LIS tool include being able to search for sites of special scientific interest (SSSI), monuments and buildings, native woodlands and waterways.
A simple area search covering Rothesay, for example, returns a list of one SSSI (Bute Central Lochs), three scheduled ancient monuments (St Mary’s Chapel, the Kirk Dam/Thom’s Cuts and Rothesay Castle) and 193 listed buildings.
The tool is expected to prove particularly useful to farmers, estate and land owners, estate agents, Scottish Rural Development Programme applicants or those involved with rural development contracts or felling licences.
The ability to view information against a backdrop of either Ordnance Survey data or aerial photography enables users to visualise sites and locations in relation to identifiable structures and buildings, roads and natural features.
David Pirie, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency’s executive director and project executive for the Scotland’s Environment website, said: “The new Land Information Search (LIS) tool is the result of input and development work carried out by the various agencies involved and we expect the tool to be a much-used and successful addition to Scotland’s Environment web platform.
“The use of the most up-to-date published data, in conjunction with improved delivery and graphics, will enhance the user experience and ultimately help those using this tool speed up their planning and decision making around land use.”
Howard Davies, Forestry Commission Scotland’s GIS Delivery Manager, who has helped oversee the development of the LIS tool, said: “It has been a major focus of work for us over the past 12 months so it is great to see it available on Scotland’s Environment website pages.
“The LIS will be extremely useful to land management professionals but it is also a fantastic tool for anyone with an interest in their local - and not so local – area.
“There is also a lot of potential for the LIS to be used in schools and colleges as a quick and easy way to learn more about environmental issues affecting the land.”
Ron Macdonald, director of policy and advice at Scottish Natural Heritage, added: “This new website search tool is simple and easy to use. It makes it practical for land managers, people applying for grants to their local communities and others to learn more about their area.
“This new LIS tool is the result of development by SNH, FCS and SEPA and other government agencies. I am delighted it has been launched and I am sure it will help people in their search for information about Scotland’s rich natural environment.”