Volunteers complete Deeside Way link

Aberdeenshire West MSP Alexander Burnett, left, with BPA volunteers
Aberdeenshire West MSP Alexander Burnett, left, with BPA volunteers

Work to rejuvenate a popular Deeside path used by local residents and visitors has been completed by Banchory Paths Association (BPA).

Rebuilding the Deeside Way link from the A93 at Pantoch to the Deeside Way has been an ambition of BPA for three years.

The route was formerly a ‘trod’ path which became heavy in the winter months and overgrown during the summer.

Aberdeenshire West MSP Alexander Burnett recently joined BPA volunteers to assist with the final stages of the project and see the group’s work first-hand.

The popular path is part of the core network in the town.

The Leys Estate, which owns the ground, has supported BPA’s work, which has included obtaining planning permission and consultations with neighbouring landowners and Aberdeenshire Council.

Mr Burnett said: “Both as an MSP and a local resident I have been keen to support the work of the BPA and particularly the regeneration of this particular part of the network of paths around Banchory and the surrounding area.

“BPA have worked incredibly hard on this project, and we should be doing everything we can to promote walking and making exercise accessible to all.”

Projects officer David Culshaw said: “Without the crucial support of both national organisations, local companies, BPA volunteers and residents of Pantoch who helped to carry out much of the initial clearing of overgrown vegetation, the completion of this project would not have been possible.

“Contractor, W Glennie of Auchattie, helped to ensure the work was carried out sympathetically, creating an environmentally friendly path with a much easier gradient. There is still some landscaping work and tree planting to be done, which will be completed by volunteers in the autumn.

“BPA will continue to maintain the path so we ask users to respect the area by taking home litter, keeping speeds down when cycling on the surface and picking up after their dogs, as responsible owners do already.”

Funds were secured by BPA and included principle sponsor Paths for All, which distributes government funding for similar projects. Local support came from Hill of Banchory Fun Run, the Caravan and Motorhome Club, which manages the Silverbank site, and a number of individual donations.

Aberdeenshire Council also provided funding.