Volunteer Group ‘Friends Of Maxwelltown Path’ Formed

A brand new volunteer group has formed in Dumfries to take care of a key cycling and walking route, and has launched a website to spread the word.

Starting off as a small project to keep a path in Dumfries tidy has now become the Friends Of Maxwelltown Path (FOMP). The Friends include regular path users and local residents and members of Cycling Dumfries. Together they have already made a visible difference in pushing back vegetation along the path, and restoring it to its full width.

The Hardthorn Road section will be the next part to receive the group’s attention this Sunday for the next work party which will involve a mixture of litter picking and bramble trimming. Everyone is welcome to join in and the group will be meeting at 11am for a couple of hours.

The group have regular work parties to target problem areas along the path on the first Sunday of each month. Despite some inclement weather this winter, they have not been deterred from their activities on the path. Various sections of the path from the Cargenbridge end to the Terregles Road have been tackled making it look wider and safer for everyone who uses it.

Richard Toulson has been key to setting up the Friends group and has been thrilled with the positive response from people using the path. Mr Toulson said, “Despite the group only meeting once a month and for two hours, the positive impact on the path is very noticeable. I use the path on a regular basis and quite a few people have commented to me on how much better it is looking now. Because there are so many people interested in finding out more about what we are doing, I have set up a website called FOMP.INFO which has lots of information.  Also, it does go to show that many hands make light work.”
A mainstay of the project Sally Hinchcliffe, Convenor of Cycling Dumfries, said “It is great to see people coming together to make the path a better place to cycle. The path forms part of the National cycle route 7 and is an excellent facility making cycling and walking to the new hospital much easier. People should think about leaving their car at home and use the path as it is now being kept tidy.”

Dumfries and Galloway council are supporting this initiative. The next work party will be convening at 11 am on Sunday 1st March at the Hardthorn Road junction on the path. Volunteers are welcomed and should bring gardening tools, especially loppers, pruning saws, shovels and stout gloves if possible.

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