Sandwood Bay path appeal

The John Muir Trust is appealing for funds to repair the path leading to the iconic Sandwood Bay, one of Britain’s most remote beaches.

The Trust, which owns and protects the bay, in northwest Sutherland, is aiming to repair the path using local materials and labour. Parts of the four mile footpath are suffering from excessive erosion, which is starting to cause damage to the surrounding peatland. The repairs will cost £27,000.

John Hutchison, chairman of the John Muir Trust said, “Sandwood is one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. The beauty of the area means it is extremely popular with visitors. Over time this pressure has caused wear to the path, which needs to be repaired to prevent further damage.”

“People come to Sandwood Bay from across the world to experience a sense of peaceful wildness. We need help from the public to maintain access and also to ensure that the path is constructed in a way that minimises further damage to habitats.”

The section of path most in need of repair goes through one of the most important peat flows in the North West of Scotland. The Trust aims to reconstruct the most damaged areas of path, install drainage, and landscape the path in a way which will minimise further damage.

The Trust purchased the 11,000 acre Sandwood Estate in 1993.The estate is covered by a number of environmental designations, and is home to a variety of species regarded as priority under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, including the greater yellow bumblebee, corncrake, fulmar and razorbill.

There is a rich mythology surrounding Sandwood Bay with many stories about visions of mermaids and ghosts. Sandwood is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a Spanish Armada sailor who knocks at the door of the derelict Sandwood Lodge, which sits above the beach.

Donations to the appeal can be made online at this link.

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