WATCH: Scooters, cyclists and walkers galore for official footpath opening

Excited bairns, walkers and cyclists turned out in force on Saturday – for the official opening of a new path linking Hoswick to Stove.

The 200-metre cycle and footpath offers an alternative route away from the road, with GAETS (Garden and Ecology Trail Sandwick) behind the £53,000 project.

Members of the group say the path offers a safer alternative with increased traffic in the area.

This includes a larger number of visitors to the Hoswick Visitor Centre and more folk coming to the village through cruise ship excursions.

Funding has come from Sandwick Community Council, transport charity Sustrans, the Scottish government’s LEADER fund and The Pebble Trust charity.

Shetland Islands Council has also provided support and advice with the scheme.

GAETS chairman Juan Brown said he was delighted with the turn-out “It’s absolutely fantastic,” he said.

“It’s amazing really and it’s brilliant to see the community support that we’ve had.

“The community support has been crucial.”

Mr Brown said Hoswick was “becoming an increasingly busy place”, both in terms of residents and lots of families living in Hoswick, and also with the number of visitors and buses from the cruise ships.

“We hope this can be an exemplar and a model that can be rolled out throughout Shetland,” he said.

He added there were other areas in Sandwick where improvements could be made to make them safer for walkers and cyclists.

The path also links to another walk into Swinister Woods, with the SIC stumping up cash from improvement works.

Mr Brown paid tribute to the hard work of GAETS secretary Rosemary Inkster and treasurer Neville Martin.

Mrs Inkster cut the ribbon for the official opening.

More in Friday’s Shetland Times.



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