Smugglers Trail Improvements – 28 May 2021

Smugglers Trail Improvements – 28 May 2021

This week’s work party ventured into pastures new with a visit to one of the more popular, official, ACP detours: The Smugglers Trail between Troon and Dundonald Castle. Recent work to sign and erect information panels at either end of Dundonald Woods (initiated by South Ayrshire Paths Initiative and funded by the Hillhouse Group) has recently been completed. Today the ACP team, with help from SAPI, dismantled and removed 140m of flattened post and wire fencing for later uplift by SAC who will install new fencing along the entire length of the path adjacent to the reservoir. Hillhouse Quarries will then carry out essential drainage and surface improvement work on wet and muddy sections of the path which have been an obstacle to path-users for some time now. If you are walking on the path when these works are taking place, please respect social distance rules and stay clear of volunteer workers and other path...
New Woodland Operations at Knockhill, Largs

New Woodland Operations at Knockhill, Largs

Work has started on the Knock Hill footpath north-east of Largs. This section of the ACP is the High Road option offering outstanding views of the Firth of Clyde and the islands. Recently, the land through which the path passes was procured by new owners Eco Forestry who, through their contractor Scottish Woodlands, are carrying out a very welcome re-wilding project starting with an access track to permit the planting of native woodland trees on the land surrounding Knock Hill between Brisbane Mains farm and the point marked X on the map below. This will be of increasing benefit and environmental importance to both wildlife and walkers as the woodlands mature. The current work is programmed to take around three weeks and could mean some minor inconvenience to walkers. However, the path remains open and walkers are asked to please respect any temporary signage and to stay clear of any plant working in the...
A77 Bennane Section Improvement

A77 Bennane Section Improvement

Thanks to the helpful efforts of trunk road operator, Amey, the section of the ACP between Bennane Lea and Bennane Shore Holiday park is once again fully accessible. Running alongside the busy A77, the path here had long been difficult to negotiate in places and had been the subject of numerous complaints from walkers forced to turn back or to make dangerous deviations from the official route. Now however, as this selection of pictures show, the route is obvious, clear and safe. Well done to all who assisted in achieving this. Some minor adjustments to signing will be carried out as soon as restrictions allow and the ongoing routine maintenance should ensure that walkers will continue to benefit from these improvements. E-side emankment BeforeE-side embankment AfterW-side barrier BeforeW-side Barrier AfterW-side bund BeforeW-side bund...
2021 Rotary Beach Clean Cancellation

2021 Rotary Beach Clean Cancellation

Regrettably, it has been necessary, once again, to cancel the annual Rotary Beach Clean. However, there is a willingness among the five South Ayrshire Rotary Clubs (led by Ayr Rotary) to endeavour to hold, or participate in, individual, local clean-ups later in the year as and when Covid restrictions allow. Despite SAC’s ever-reducing budgets and manpower resource levels it is felt that beaches are generally cleaner than in the past and this is believed to be attributable to a greater appreciation of the environmental blight of litter generally and to the efforts of local communities (groups and individuals) to take more direct, positive actions to keep our beaches and neighbourhoods tidier. ACP is a great contributor to these efforts with the success of the Blue Bin initiative and the regular work-party clean-ups. Ayr Rotary is committed to continuing the Annual Spring Beach Clean, from 2022 onwards, for its improvement to the environment and for the overall benefit to the...
Another Fantastic Donation!

Another Fantastic Donation!

Thanks very much to Firstpoint Flooring! Here is an excerpt from an email sent to Firstpoint by Trail Manager, Jimmy Begg. “I was suprised and delighted to get a phone call the other day from Marion Young of SAC telling me that you and Firstpoint Flooring Contract Ltd had chosen the Ayrshire Coastal Path as the recipient of a £300 donation from your company, and that the money was due to be lodged in our account.  This couldn’t have come at a better time, as we have to raise all the money to maintain and improve the 106 mile-long ACP by ourselves, as the Path is managed and maintained on a purely voluntary basis by a Management Board of nine, and a group of 56 Pathminders who do all the maintenance work.  Recently, after a year of repairs and improvements, our maintenance fund (to cover costs of all materials and service of our brushcutters and mower) had dropped to just a few hundred pounds – and it takes at least £1500 a year to cover all these expenses and more. To pay for replacement signage and other big items we always need to seek grants from various bodies, and your donation of £300 is a big help and will be put towards the costs of replacement of four large information panels that are beginning to show signs of deterioration and need re-designed and brought up to date.” Donations are always gratefully received, and allow the ACP Team to keep the Path in good order....
Dog Dirt is Offensive!

Dog Dirt is Offensive!

Dog owners may think they are doing well by picking up their pooches’ poo and putting in a nice little plastic bag. But just consider how our volunteers have to deal with it. This week over 100 bags of Dog Dirt, weighing over 30lbs – and many of them burst – were removed from just one Blue Bin near Croy by two of our Volunteers. A most unpleasant task! Another at Turnberry was also badly abused in this selfish manner. The Blue Bins have been a great success, with many beach walkers gathering rubbish and placing in the bins, but they are not for Dog Dirt.  It will be a big Environmental Set-back to our beautiful coastline if the ACP is forced to remove Blue Bins from beaches because they are abused by a minority of unsocial Dog Walkers. To this minority of Dog Owners – don’t leave others to do your dirty work! Take it home!  And many thanks to those volunteer Pathminders who clear the Blue Bins – and to all the caring walkers who litter-pick our remote beaches....

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