A community path on the Isle of Skye, located in an area of rich crofting history, has completed a significant upgrade last month. The Ardnish Path Restoration Project received £60,000 from our £1.5m Ian Findlay Path Fund, covering 69% of the overall project costs.
Driven by the Lower Breakish Grazing Committee and supported by Highland Council, 900m of path between Breakish and Waterloo was resurfaced, widened, and a new bridge built over the Allt Linnidal Burn.
Opened in a ribbon cutting ceremony by local, Neil MacInnes, the upgraded path officially reopened in October 2023.
The path acts as a lifeline for locals, crofters, and visitors, who use it to avoid walking on the busy main road.
Carol Huggan, Clerk of the Grazing Committee explained what the restored path means for the tight knit community.
Our community is unique, perhaps because we have crofters and families who are fourth or fifth generation still living in the area who still take a lot of pride in the village.
The path is crucial for us to be able to walk safely, instead of braving the dangerous A87 main road. The original path was built over 23 years ago, and needed some major work to ensure it was accessible to all, whether it’s people in wheelchairs, those with low ability or families with prams.
We will be forever grateful for this funding. My late father, Calum Macrae, loved his village and would have been delighted to see everyone enjoying the path, and the memorial bench that has been set up in his memory.
The number of people using the path already is astonishing and we hope this continues to thrive.
Local contractor D.N. Munro Plant Hire was contracted to complete the works, which included resurfacing the entire 900m, widening the path from as narrow as 30cm, to a minimum of 1.5m, as well as upgrading drainage, and installing a new accessible bridge over the flood prone burn.
The Ian Findlay Path Fund provides funding to community organisations across Scotland focused on improving local path networks. It was established in memory of Ian Findlay CBE, our late Chief Officer.
Kevin Lafferty, our CEO, said:
It’s wonderful to see the passion and appreciation this community has for their upgraded path. Projects like this exemplify the spirit and impact of the Ian Findlay Path Fund in supporting active travel and connectivity.
Walking not only benefits people’s health but can bring communities together, which we can see here in Ardnish.
The Ian Findlay Path Fund is supported by Transport Scotland and continues to support local initiatives aimed at enhancing path networks and fostering active travel.
Community groups interested in applying for the second round of funding can reach out to the Ian Findlay Path Fund team at IFPF@pathforall.org.uk.
For more information about the Ian Findlay Path Fund, click here.