Galloway Glens Footpath construction work goes out to tender

A key element of the Galloway Glens Scheme is the improvements being made to footpaths and access routes up and down the Ken/Dee Valley. This week sees a major milestone in this work, with three routes going out for tender, seeking contractors to bid for the work. The tender is published on Public Contracts Scotland, with quotes sought by 11th September.


The three routes in question are:

  • Torrs Point, Kirkcudbright – Resurfacing the popular route beyond the Lifeboat Station in Kirkcudbright Bay which currently suffers from drainage issues.
  • Pack Road, from Polmaddy to Carsphairn – Bringing this ancient path, for centuries the main route between Galloway and Glasgow, back into use as ‘The Glenkens Pilgrims Way’ and exploring the artefacts and points of interest along the way
  • Blackpark to Threave, Castle Douglas – Improvements to this already popular route to allow wheelchair access from Castle Douglas to Threave Castle and Lamb Island. Also a new spur that provides off-road route as far as the Bridge of Dee.


These improvements are being undertaken using funding secured from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, matched with contributions from a range of other sources including: the Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) administered ‘Improving Public Access’ fund, The Winnifred Kennedy Trust, South West Environmental Trust (SWEAT) and LandTrust. The projects are only made possible by the support of the different landowners involved.


The projects are being led by Jonathan Barrett, the Galloway Glens Land Management & Access Officer. Jonathan said:

“One of the headline aims of the Galloway Glens Scheme is to allow and encourage people to get out into our amazing natural environment. Our thanks go to funders and our supportive landowners. The works proposed have been identified by the community as being of benefit and we are working with a wide variety of partners as we look to maintain and care for these routes going forward.
As well as the benefit the completed routes will provide, the direct local economic opportunities of undertaking a scheme like this are important and we have been speaking to a range of local contractors who I hope will be bidding for the work. The Public Contracts Scotland website ensures we receive best value for money for the projects but also makes the jobs accessible to anyone interested.
The improvement works will be complete by the end of the year, with formal launches proposed for early in 2020.”


Peter Ross, Chair of the Dumfries & Galloway Outdoor Access Trust, added:

We are delighted to hear progress on these routes, with the work now going out for tender. The Galloway Glens team should be applauded for their efforts in securing match funding and getting these projects off the ground.
The Castle Douglas and Kirkcudbright routes are well used, with these projects widening access and addressing existing issues. The Pack road running from Carsphairn to Polmaddy is one of the most important historical routes in the area and for centuries was the main connection between Galloway and Glasgow. In places the groove left by foot traffic over the centuries is still visible, with a variety of points of archaeological interest alongside.  
The Dumfries & Galloway Outdoor Access Trust aims to support all efforts to encourage and allow residents and visitors to get outside and enjoy the Galloway outdoors, with all of the recreation and associated health & wellbeing benefits that result.