IRRESPONSIBLE WALKERS WITH DOGS FORCE PERMANENT CLOSURE OF CLIFFTOP SECTION OF AYRSHIRE COASTAL PATH FROM CURRARIE PORT TO LANGDALE FARM.
Since 2008, we have repeatedly emphasised on the Website, the Guide Book, and our Farming and Outdoor Access panels at either end of this section, about the necessity of keeping all dogs at home – or on their leads when passing through fields of livestock – and that failure of walkers to act responsibly could easily result in closure of a part of the Coastal Path.
In January 2016,, two young people with local accents ignored the “temporary closure” notices at Currarie Port road-end, and walked the cliff-top path with their three collie-sized dogs off the lead through Langdale farmland, spooking cattle and causing one to be bodily trapped in a ring-feeder.
Walkers must realise they do not have a “Right to Roam” – they have a right of Responsible Access – and we are furious that the arrogance and ignorance of a tiny irresponsible minority has ruined a fantastic route for the 95% of genuine walkers who are considerate and mindful of the countryside – and of those for whom it is their precarious livelihood.
The Langdale farmer, one of our strongest and most tolerant supporters, has already lost one cow worth £2000 due to gates left open, had fences knocked down by spooked cattle, and walkers tramping over newly seeded fields.
He is trying to run a farming business, and after giving walkers one last chance after several stupid incidents in Summer 2015, he has now had enough, and has withdrawn his consent to the route of the Ayrshire Coastal Path passing over his land.
As a consequence, all Ayrshire Coastal Path walkers must now use the scenic, easy, attractive inland route marked with permanent signage.
From the south, it follows the track from Glenapp past the present Currarie Port turn-off, then along the single-track public road beyond High Ballochdowan farm to Killantringan Bridge, and west past Low Ballochdowan, Craigalbert and Meadowpark farms down to Garleffin and Ballantrae. From the north, follow the sign at Garleffin road junction.
Warning: Remain alert, as the narrow road from the Currarie Port track, past High Ballochdowan and Kilantringan Bridge to the A77(T) may occasionally be used by construction traffic.
NB: The Ayrshire Coastal Path management group has every sympathy for the farmer’s dilemma.
All walkers must take on board that farming is like any other production industry.
Would walkers “roam” through any other factory – with or without dogs – and damage or disrupt the production line?