A new nature trail has been opened at Glencanisp Lodge in Assynt to formally launch the Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership Scheme.
The short trail passes through native woodland that surrounds Glencanisp Lodge and provides stunning elevated views of Suilven. It also links with the longer walks through the surrounding estate.
It was officially opened by Bella MacAskill, the youngest school pupil in Assynt, and Jonny Hughes, Chief Executive of the Scottish Wildlife Trust.
Jonny Hughes said: “This new nature trail is just one of a huge range of projects that are benefiting people and wildlife in Coigach and Assynt thanks to players of the National Lottery and many other funders.
“The partners in this exciting initiative are showing how to deliver conservation on a truly landscape scale, and demonstrating that partnerships can achieve much more than working alone.”
Boyd Alexander, Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership Scheme Manager said: “As one of the first projects to be completed as part of the scheme, this trail not only supports to the community owned Assynt Foundation, but also allows both visitors and community to easily explore the fantastic nature in this part of the Highlands.”
Gordon Robertson, Chief Executive, Assynt Foundation said: “The foundation is extremely grateful for the support to create a trail that has been proposed for many years. It is a pleasure to work together, and to be part of the wider Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership Scheme, that provides so much to so many.”
Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership Scheme is a unique partnership between 14 different organisations. The partners are working to deliver twenty eight projects that will collectively enhance the area’s natural, built and cultural heritage.
These projects include creating and expanding native woodland, offering outdoor learning to all local schools, major repairs to the approach and summit paths of Suilven, and work to excavate and stabilise the Iron Age Clachtoll Broch.
The Glencanisp Nature Trail is being delivered by the Assynt Foundation. It is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, and the SRDP fund for Improving Public Access.
Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, Lucy Casot said: “Congratulations to everyone involved in completing this new trail and making this stunningly beautiful part of the country accessible to many more people. The trail will make a valuable contribution to local tourism as well as to the health and wellbeing of those who use it. The Heritage Lottery Fund is delighted to have played its part in making that happen.”