All-ability access to Garnock landscape

Man pushing person using large wheelchair next to river

Heritage Grants

LOCHWINNOCH, Scotland
RSPB Scotland
£1505000
Many more people will have the opportunity to access the River Garnock’s natural beauty spots and experience the health benefits being outdoors can bring.

Ayrshire’s River Garnock, rich in wildlife and plants, runs through an industrial area which has some of the highest levels of deprivation in Scotland.

The Garnock Connections Landscape Partnership, led by the RSPB, is addressing the inequalities in access to the beautiful green spaces surrounding the river by providing ‘all-ability wheelers’.

The wheelers can travel over soft sand, mud and gravel, giving people with mobility impairment and wheelchair users the chance to reach previously inaccessible locations.

“I really enjoyed going on a wheeler, I had not been on a bike for 30+ years.”

The Places That We Know app and website has also been developed to help people find heritage trails that match their needs. Local members of the community contribute trails, pictures and stories.

Alyson Hunter, Garnock Connections Project Manager, said: As more trails are added, the app and website will hopefully give others the confidence to come and try a wheeler”

One happy wheeler user said “I really enjoyed going on a wheeler, I had not been on a bike for 30+ years.”

And as for the heritage that can’t be physically reached, virtual reality is on its way soon