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Preserving Dounreay's heritage attracts media interest

November 20, 2008

 Heritage officer James Gunn is getting used to being in the limelight.

 He has been featured in both BBC Reporting Scotland and on BBC Radio Scotland in the space of one week.

 In his role as heritage officer, James was chosen to feature in a radio programme entitled “No Going Back”, looking at the way in which Dounreay affected the community of Caithness, socially and economically.

 The programme also featured DSG chairman Alastair Macdonald, local farmer Maurice Pottinger and Dounreay worker and historian Stephen Cashmore.

 BBC reporter Jackie O’Brien came to site one weekend in November and recorded James as he showed them around the DFR control room and the soon to be demolished plutonium criticality laboratory.

 The resulting clip was shown on BBC Reporting Scotland on Tuesday 18 November.  The radio programme was broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland on Thursday 20 November.

 "With decommissioning progressing at pace, preserving Dounreay\'s heritage starts to become more imperative,” James commented.  “The fact that the BBC is taking such an active interest  highlights the importance of the Dounreay phenomenon and the effect it has had on the lives of people in Caithness and North Sutherland.  

 “My role as heritage officer may be a new one, but with the amount of interest shown by staff, ex-Dounreay employees, the press and stakeholders, it is turning out to be a very interesting and busy baptism.  Hopefully the local and national media coverage will make even more people stop and think about how they can contribute to preserving Dounreay\'s history.

 A comprehensive heritage strategy for Dounreay is currently being produced in conjunction with Atkins Ltd, covering all aspects including social history, buildings and artefact collections.  The strategy is the first of its kind for a UK nuclear complex and is creating a lot of interest in the industrial heritage world.

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