The core work of OATS path-building has been based on a series of projects, using funds from multiple sources including our own donations and income, to enhance the footpath network of particular areas.
OATS will conceive and develop a scheme, getting partners on board and levering in funding to ensure success. Our project managers and path designers then work with a trusted team of contractors and workers to produce appropriate and durable paths.
THE MOUNTAINS AND THE PEOPLE
The Mountains And The People is the biggest mountain footpath project ever undertaken in the UK, and has been inspired, initiated, planned and built by the Outdoor Access Trust for Scotland (OATS).
The project is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and is in partnership with Scotland’s two national park Authorities, Cairngorms and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, Forestry and Land Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage.
Unique working and funding partnerships on The Isle of Skye come to fruition.
OATS is now at the forefront of developing partnership solutions to find new sources of income for the conservation of upland and lowland paths and surrounding habitats, and sustainable public access at popular trail heads.
Walkers and cyclists can link up Aviemore and Kingussie thanks to the extension to the Speyside Way. The final 2.8km from Tromie Bridge to Ruthven Barracks was finished by OATS in March 2020.
That ended seven years of work carried out in partnership with the Cairngorm National Park Authority (CNPA) at a total cost of £1.3 million. On the way the project team had to negotiate with landowners, avoid conflict with rail infrastructure, seek funding and come up with innovative bridge-building solutions.
ADOPT A PATH
Adopt A Path is a flagship volunteering initiative of the Outdoor Access Trust for Scotland. It lets people who are passionate about Scotland’s outdoors become custodians of some of our most important upland paths, and conserve fragile landscapes.
There are paths available for adoption in both Cairngorm and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs national parks. Some are long or remote, others short and accessible.
THE CAIRNGORMS MOUNTAIN HERITAGE PROJECT
The Cairngorms Mountain Heritage Project transformed paths in the high mountains at the core of the Cairngorms National Park, one of the most important mountain recreation areas in Scotland, between 2011 and 2014.
The Cairngorm mountains’ importance to us is matched by their fragility, so CMH had to enable access while protecting the landscape. It improved and upgraded eroded routes, and set up the Adopt A Path scheme and a maintenance regime to ensure the paths’ future, while educating and informing people about the project, and, crucially, training the workforce of the future.
EASTERN CAIRNGORMS ACCESS PROJECT
The Eastern Cairngorms Access Project (ECAP) was a £2.5 million programme of high-quality access improvements in the mountains and glens of Angus and Upper Deeside between 2003 and 2006.