NatureScot and the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020/21

VisitScotland has confirmed that Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters will flow into 2021, welcome news given the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on many activities. You can find the latest updates on our programme of activities below. Throughout the year we will also bring our wonderful shorelines and waterways to you through inspiring content on our website and social media channels using #YCW2021.

Message in a Bottle / Brath sa Bhuideal

Message in a Bottle is a musical composition developed by acclaimed traditional musician Ingrid Henderson for Year of Coast and Waters. The piece explores the incredible journeys of marine wildlife and seabirds, our dependence on the seas and the exchanges of language and culture around our coast, while highlighting the impact of climate change on the world’s oceans. Using a combination of music, song, Gaelic language, film and animation, Ingrid’s creative talent fuses with NatureScot’s wealth of scientific knowledge and research to celebrate Scotland’s unique marine environment.

The commission premiered at Celtic Connections in 2020 and, whilst the Covid-19 pandemic curtailed plans for a summer tour, Ingrid joined NatureScot’s Head of Marine Ecosystems in July 2020 for an online talk about the inspiration behind her work.

Message in a Bottle has now been released as an album and a Scottish tour is set for 2022. Watch this space for more information on dates.

Message in a Bottle animation

Animation by Cat Bruce

An Seòladair aig Rubha Dà Chuain

The Sailor at the point of two oceans

Lockdown Concert 2020

In Tune with Nature

A competition inviting musicians of all genres to compose new music as part of a high-profile national composition and song writing project called 'In Tune with Nature'.

The twelve winners of In Tune with Nature.


Ross Hull

Isle of May

Catriona Price

Beinn Eighe

Marie Fielding


Malin Lewis

Loch Leven

Beth Malcolm


Lucie Treacher

Taynish (joint winner)

Roo Geddes and Neil Sutcliffe


Sarah MacNeil

Creag Meagaidh

Charlie Grey


Barney Bridges


Iona Lane


James Lindsay

Plunge In! Coasts and Waters Community Fund

The Plunge In! Fund supports 25 new community projects which reflect the amazing reach and diversity of our shorelines and waterways. The projects will engage and connect more people with our seas, coasts, lochs, rivers, streams and wetlands, and their unique wildlife. The fund aims to leave a legacy from the Year of Coasts and Waters, for example through improved skills and knowledge or the creation of a community resource. Click on the project picture or marker point in the map below to find out more about each project.

All funding has now been allocated and no further applications will be considered.

Coasts and Waters Community Fund Story Map