Villagers push for safe passage on A82 and A86

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Spean Bridge and Roy Bridge villagers have submitted a report to the government asking for safe active travel corridors along the trunk roads leading out of their villages.

They want a separate track away from fast and large vehicles to keep them safe, healthy and to reduce their carbon footprint.

Linda Taylor, chairwoman of Connecting Spean Roy area Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO), said: ‘The bureaucracy to request an active travel route was so difficult that we decided to produce our own preliminary feasibility report putting all of our ideas into one document which we have now sent to the decision makers.

‘Instead of jumping into the car to go to the shop, we can walk there safely. Instead of driving into town we can build our stamina up to cycle there and back on tracks or quiet roads.’

The group would like to see a continuation of the existing track from Roy Bridge village centre at the western end of Inverroy extended to allow a safe active travel route to Spean school.

‘Active travel simply means walking or wheeling – using a wheelchair or mobility aid,  cycling or scooting,’ added Linda.

‘It’s a way of getting all of us fitter as well as cutting our carbon emissions and being sustainable.’

An active travel track from Spean Bridge village centre to Leanachan Crossroads to allow pedestrians and non-motorised traffic access to General Wades Road is also an aim of the group. They also want to see an upgrade of the path up to the Commando Memorial which is narrow where it leaves the village and the 60mph speed limit starts.

‘Widening just up to the layby would make a huge difference,’ continued Linda.

The proposals have many backers.

Entrepreneur and founder of Nevis Range Ian Sykes, said: ‘This is a great idea. These two villages are the nearest neighbours to Leanachan Forest and Nevis Range but they cannot be approached without a fearful bike ride along busy trunk roads.

‘Nevis Range and Forestry and Land Scotland have been working on these tracks for years to allow visitors and resdents to enjoy.

‘This is a great case of villagers and businesses having the same aim. I fully commend them and hope the politicians make this happen.’

Linda concluded by saying the group has many supporters but would be delighted to get more.

‘Anyone aged over 16 who empathises with our aims can join the Connecting Spean Roy Area SCIO for free,’ she added.

Visit www.activetravelspean.wordpress.com for more information and membership forms.

Photograph (NO_F48_Connecting Spean Roy Area): Villagers are asking for separate track away from fast and large vehicles.