It is no surprise to those who live here or anyone who has visited, that our rural parishes of Keir, Penpont and Tynron in Mid Nithsdale are exceptionally beautiful.
Dumfries and Galloway Council have mapped many core paths within our area and also there are other walks suited to both experienced and more leisurely walkers.
Since the inception of the KPT Development Trust, the Tracks and Trails Group have been working to encourage and promote walking and cycling in the area.
KPT Development Trust has become part of the Cycling Friendly Community under the cycling Scotland umbrella and have funded cycle repair hubs, information boards and improve cycling skills and maintenance through workshops and family fun bike rides.
Penpont – Keir Mill Circular Walk: The Tracks and Trails Group secured a Paths 4 All grant in 2018 to increase the awareness of Dumfries and Galloway council’s core path 104 between Penpont and Keir as well as improving some of its features. A guide leaflet with a map and points of environmental and historical interest was produced. Way markers were installed along with a new bench made of recycled agricultural plastic.
The Tracks and Trails Group are grateful to Paths 4 All and to all local volunteers who continue to be involved.
Copies of the leaflet are available at the Trust base as well as Penpont Shop. Copies can be requested by e-mail or downloaded here.
Penpont to Thornhill Active Travel Path: The aim of this path is to ensure that residents and visitors of all ages and abilities can travel safely between Penpont and Thornhill without encountering the obvious hazards that the A702 presents. This path will be a multi-user route, with a sealed surface, offering a pleasant accessible track for everyone – walkers, runners, cyclists and wheelchair users. There will be well-positioned benches to enjoy those stunning rural views.
To achieve this objective, the Trust are grateful to have received substantial funding from the Scottish Government through Sustrans, Scotland’s Places for Everyone programme. The Tracks and Trails group work closely with Sustrans and have reached the developed design stage of the path, having appointed TP&E, a social enterprise consultancy firm. Working with Sustrans means that the path will be built to their exacting standards and in doing so, they will give 70% of the construction costs.
For further information on this path, please contact the Trust office.
Thornhill Call Out: Land purchase and lease agreements are reaching the final stages for the route shown below. The design of the Penpont side of the path is well underway and decisions now have to be made on the Thornhill side of the Nith bridge. The KPT steering group are keen to hear the views of Thornhill residents and would welcome two or three Thornhill voices on the steering group. The path will be in the field on the Thornhill side of the Nith on a built embankment similar to the illustration. The path then has to continue to the 30 mph sign. Decisions about getting into Thornhill will have to comply with road safety regulations and Sustrans standards which require all paths to meet the standards that are based on children age 12 and over being able to cycle independently.
Tynron to Keir Path: In 2019 the Tracks and Trails group were awarded a £1,000 grant from the Prince’s Countryside fund to enhance the experience of the Keir to Tynron (core path 73). This grant will help fund a guide leaflet, installation of a pedestrian gate on the A702, two benches and information boards. This project has been delayed by tree felling and Covid-19 but is now progressing. Information boards and installation of a pedestrian gate on Ford farm. D&G Outdoor Access Team have installed 2in1 gates enabling walkers to go through fields instead of long twisty section of the A702. Two benches have been installed at viewpoints along the way.
Keir to Scaurfoot path: The tracks and Trails group were approached by Keir Community Council about the potential to improve this part of Core path 104 from Keir metal bridge to Scaurfoot. It is hoped to produce an on-line leaflet and install a bench. The Group are currently in discussion with the farmer and D & G Council.
The Tracks and Trails group are keen to promote other existing walking and cycling routes in the area. Further information on routes is available on: Dumfries and Galloway core paths walking and cycling webpage https://info.dumgal.gov.uk/mapviewers/pathsmap.aspx.
Cycling in and Around Nithsdale
Dumfries and Galloway Green Travel Map
Please may we ask all walkers and cyclists, local or visiting, read and obey the Scottish Outdoor Access Code www.outdooraccess-scotland.scot