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Cévennes mountains join Unesco list

World heritage body recognises outstanding natural beauty and long tradition of sheep-farming

A VAST natural park in the south of France, including the home of Roquefort cheese, has been added to Unesco's world heritage list.

The Cévennes mountain range and the Grands Causses limestone plateaux in the Massif Central were recognised for their exceptional natural beauty and for the work of the

region's shepherds who have helped shape the landscape over the centuries.

The area spans 3,000km² across four departments: the Gard, Hérault, Aveyron and Lozère, and is one of the least densely populated areas of France.

Ecologists and local MPs have been lobbying Unesco for recognition for more than five years and the application was rejected twice.

A decision by Unesco on a separate application, for the work of Franco-Swiss architect Le Corbusier to be added to the world heritage list, has been delayed.

Photo: Sylvain Bouquet - Fotolia.com

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