6 Jul 2023

Over the last five weeks – at the behest of a farmer keen to protect his livestock from straying close to the A77T at Ardwell – a  team of Pathminders has spent 72 man-hours building a new set of up-and-over sleeper steps beside a closed field-gate, which included a specially-installed wicket-gate (plus a Yellow Warning Notice to “Keep This Gate Securely Chained”) to prevent agile animals from escaping over the steps into the next field – and possibly on to the nearby, busy and very dangerous, major trunk road.

On 1 July we got a very appreciative email from him:
Hi Jimmy. Good job well done.  I will lift the waste wood shortly. Cheers. 

On 6 July – this telling photograph – and the despairing and exasperated comment:

All that work you’d put in and they still can’t shut a gate properly. Cheers 

It is not only the farmer, but the ACP management team who are exasperated and angry at the irresponsible behaviour of a minority of walkers who carelessly disregard or abuse their ‘Right of Responsible Access’ over working farms along the Ayrshire Coastal Path. Coming from the south, they would have already passed through SIX gates bearing the same Yellow Warning Notice. Coming from the North, they would already have seen TWO similar requests. If any walkers who passed through this gate on the 5th or 6th July, happen to read this and realise that they – or their Tail-end Charlie – had genuinely forgotten to close this gate, their hands-up, honest acknowledgment would be much appreciated. We can all make mistakes.

If all other walkers who read this can learn from our obvious concerns for the safety of livestock – and road users in case of accident – it will be a lesson well learned – and a gesture of understanding and respect towards our Farming Partners.

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