An £800,000 project to make Loch Leven an accessible countryside destination may soon become a reality.
The plan is to replace a 35-year-old tunnel and steep steps below the B9097 road, to connect the popular ‘Sleeping Giant’ path from Fife to the Loch Leven Heritage Trail.
The trail, linking natural, historic and cultural heritage around Loch Leven in central Scotland, stretches for 13 miles. If the planned project goes ahead, mobility scooter users will have full access to the trail with no interruptions.
The aim is to create more gentle slopes for wheelchair and mobility scooter users and to provide total access for cyclists and families with young children in pushchairs. Planning permission for the new underpass has been approved by Perth and Kinross Council with nature conservation group RSPB Scotland acting as project coordinators.
To help the plans progress, there is now a search to secure match funding for the underpass to go with what has already been raised. According to The Courier, all four local ward councillors are supportive of the project.
“I am sure that all members of Perth and Kinross Council would like to see this project succeed and we will consider every avenue possible to try to help get a successful outcome,” said Councillor Ian Campbell, leader of the Perth and Kinross Council.
Alex Rowley, Mid Scotland and Fife MSP added: “This project will give even greater accessibility to more of the national nature reserve and is very welcome.
“Everyone involved should be very proud of their achievements to date and their ambition to bring more people to experience Loch Leven.”
RSPB Scotland’s site manager Uwe Stoneman added that they were “thrilled” to be helping people of all abilities to experience the Loch Leven Heritage Trail. Head to the trail by car or pack your foldable mobility scooter and take the bus.
Image credit: SupportITNI