LISTEN: Annie Benson and Bid Strachan share what the plans will mean for the path in future
The future of Kinloch Rannoch looks bright as the local desire for an increased path network comes to fruition and paves the way for a more accessible way to enjoy the town for locals and tourists alike.
Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust have been working for over a decade with volunteers from the Rannoch Paths & Open Spaces Group (RPOSG) to identify the needs of the village and how to best implement them in the form of the Rannoch Riverside All Abilities Path Project.
Communities Officer with Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust, Bid Strachan, said:
“We have been asked to look at improving a route along the riverside in the village and creating that to a standard that is good for everyone to use but also accommodating shared use for active travel.
Leader of the Rannoch Paths & Open Space Group, Annie Benson, said:
“The project started in about 2010 when the toilet block on the site that we’re going to use was closed and pulled down by the council.
“Since then, various groups have tried to look at a way to A – make it more attractive and B – making access down to the riverside path possible from the centre of the village.
“We’ve done various things through community consultation. We’ve done surveys, we’ve done talking to people at lunches and the local Stride for Life group and overall, I’ve had about 200 positive responses.
“On the whole everyone is very much talking about it and looking forward to it and hoping that one day soon it might start.
“Part of the path will come from the village square so the centre of the village down a ramped access to a path that then goes both east and west out into connecting a whole area of the village.
“I worked out that it’s probably about a mile from the Loch Rannoch Hotel on the West end of the route. We’re not renewing all that route, but it will connect to the West end route.
“In the East, it will go out to the other end of the village connecting the hall, the school and the housing estate that’s out there – so it’s about a mile long.”
Bid Strachan added:
“It’s a really valuable link crossing the village with three access points – one in the west, one in the east and one in the centre.
“The one from the centre has a real challenge of implementing a gradient solution to access from the street level from the village square down onto the riverside.
The three elements of the project are:
- The Access Point from the Village Centre to the Riverside Path.
- Path Heading East – Towards the “Banana Bridge”, the Glamping Pods, Craig Varr Place & Primary School.
- Path Heading West – Buchanan Path, towards the Health Centre, Loch End Path, The Loch Rannoch Highland Club and Loch Rannoch Hotel.
Bid Strachan concluded:
“If this path comes off which to my mind could be a real jewel in the crown of the community as creating a fabulous active travel facility but also a destination for so many people then I think it will really see a real new age for the area that perhaps has been overlooked in the past by so many people.”
For more information on the Rannoch Riverside All Abilities Path Project, please visit: https://www.pkct.org/Pages/Category/rannoch-riverside-all-abilities-path-project