POLICE Scotland have publicly slapped down the BBC after a news report claimed the force wanted visitors to stay away from Skye.
The BBC claimed police had warned visitors planning on going to the Isle of Skye not to come without a reservation.
However, unhappy with the story, police in the Lochaber and Skye office took to Twitter to refute the claim two hours later.
They stated: “We haven’t said anything like that at all – our timeline asks people to be prepared, park/drive sensibly and keep the place clean. #SkyeIsOpen”
The BBC replied: “Thanks for getting in touch, we have clarified our story.”
The force later tweeted: “We are not advising people not to come to Skye and not turning people away at the bridge-we love visitors & just want people to be prepared.
“Drive and park sensibly, think about where you are going to stay and leave the area clean and tidy as you found it. Enjoy Skye – we do!”
Sergeant Bruce Crawford said: “The summer months are an incredibly busy period on Skye and this is obviously good for business but it can create problems, especially with accommodation often at a premium. I would never advise people against visiting our beautiful island but I would ask people to use common sense before travelling without booking accommodation in advance if they intend to stay overnight.”
The correction tweet from Skye & Lochaber police has so far received over 500 retweets and the same number of likes, with many criticising the report.
@MBarelegs wrote: “Good on @LochabSkyePol for pulling @BBCNews on this one. It’s NOT the police getting political, it’s pointing out a story which is untrue…”
@ferryhill9 said: “Respect guys, well done for correcting them. Now about that parking ticket?”
@fishface60 tweeted: “Good for Lochaber and Skye Police calling out the BBC for misreporting…we need more of this”
The island’s population of 10,000 swells to up to 60,000 during the peak tourist season and this year locals have complained about overcrowding and police have received calls from tourists asking for help with accommodation.
The BBC’s original reported claimed: “Police Scotland are warning visitors without reservations to stay away from the Isle of Skye as the island struggles to cope with a massive influx of tourists…”
The report has been altered on their website to ask: “Does the Isle of Skye have too many tourists?”