100 miles of new paths created in Scotland


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Scottish Natural Heritage is celebrating the construction of hundreds of new routes which will improve public access as part of the Agri-Environment Climate Scheme.

By the end this year a distance of the whole of the West Highland Way – from Milngavie to Fort William – will be funded by the scheme.

The new pathways will make it it easier for walkers and cyclists to enjoy the Scottish outdoors and they will be more accessible for wheelchair users, horse riders and pram users.

The paths will open new ways to explore the countryside and connect towns and villages all across the country.

Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said: ‘What better way to mark the successful conclusion of May’s National Walking Month than to announce so many new walking paths for people to enjoy, connecting our towns and villages with Scotland’s amazing countryside.’

SNH has been working with the Scottish Government Rural Payments and Inspections Division (RPID) and has committed a total of £8.5 million to the scheme.

A total of 138 projects have been funded in total, 52 of which are due to be completed in 2019. An easy access path has been added to Ben Nevis Visitor Centre and is proving popular as previously tree roots and muddy hollows restricted people from enjoying the riverside walk there.

SNH chief executive Francesca Osowaka said: ‘We know that more people than ever before are visiting the outdoors on a regular basis, which is great news given the many benefits for physical and mental health of getting outside.

‘Good quality and well signposted paths can make it easier for more people to enjoy our great outdoors so  with summer ahead it’s fantastic to be able to celebrate the success of this scheme in delivering so many quality routes across the country.’