Bid to make Brodick walk more accessible

Men at work building the new boardwalk.

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By Hugh Boag

Work to make the Fisherman’s Walk in Brodick more accessible, even at high tide, is currently underway.

The Arran Access Trust is spending £16,000 to extend the existing boardwalk another 70 metres along the shore to raise the height of the walk above the high tide.

The work has been made possible by a grant of £6,000 from the visitor gifting scheme,  the Arran Trust, with the remainder of the cash coming from the Arran Access Trust.

The work is being carried out by Arran Footpaths and Forestry, which was established on the island by Scott Murdoch, but now carries out work across Scotland.

Already the foundations of the new stretch of path across the two concrete bridges, which regularly flood at high tide, have been put in place and timber work to complete the job is well underway and is due to be complete before Christmas.

However, walkers should take care around the new section of path under construction. Warning signs are in place and a section of the walk may have to be completed closed for around a week while a section of the work is carried out.

Chairman of the Arran Access Trust Malcolm Whitmore said the aim of raising the walkway was to make it more accessible all year round.

Extensive repair work was carried out in the spring to the existing section of boardwark which was badly damaged by last year’s winter storms and the additional foundations appear to have bedded in well.

Mr Whitmore said the improvement works were part of a plan to further promote the Fisherman’s Walk to visitors. ‘We want to promote it at the ferry terminal and Tourist Information Centre as a walkable route to Cladach for all abilities,’ he said.

The new route will take walkers along the path and back out to the main road past the Big Wooden House along the main road pavement and then past Arran Heritage Museum and across the short section of the golf course to the recently upgraded path to Strabane and out past Home Farm to Cladach, rather than using the whole coastal route.

The work on the new boardwalk is expected to be finished before Christmas.

Meanwhile, the tireless work of the Arran Access Trust goes on. Since inception in 1999 the Trust has evolved from a community group set up primarily to resolve issues between landowners and walkers to the leading access organisation on Arran taking a strategic approach to the management of access provision throughout the island.

At present they are replacing styles with self opening gates across the island and have just completed four gates at Sandbraes in Whiting Bay and are replacing six gates in the Strathwhillan and Lamlash areas.

The Trust has also purchased more ‘non slip’ strips for the boardwalk which links Cordon with Kings Cross.

Mr Whitmore said: ‘The Trust is continuously working to improve the paths and trails on Arran for visitors and locals alike and the more members we can attract the more work we can do.’

The Trust is always regularly looking for volunteers to carry out path repairs and maintenance, cutting back brambles and bracken and clearing drains.

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The boardwalk is being raised over the two concrete bridges which regularly flood.

The boardwalk is being raised over the two concrete bridges which regularly flood. 01_B49walk01

Men at work building the new boardwalk. 01_B49walk02