There looks set to be another delay in the long running plans to extend the Speyside Way. Currently the long distance route from Buckie on the Moray Firth ends at Aviemore, however for the last 14 years there have been plans made to extend it to Newtonmore.
Much of the hold up has been due to objections from the Kinrara Estate, one of a number of landowners owning land on the proposed extension. In May 2010 the Cairngorms National Park Authority decided to use a path order to enforce access over the 7km stretch on the Estate’s land. These powers, which came in as part of the Scottish Land Reform Act (2003), have never been used and the Speyside Way is likely to be seen as a test case.
The Kinrara Estate has now filed a formal objection to the path order which means the issue will have to be resolved at an inquiry by a Scottish Government Reporter. The Kinrara Estate say that their objection is based on the fact that they don’t like the proposed route and feel an alternative route, still on Estate land, would be better for the Estate’s residents, walkers and wildlife.
The Cairngorms National Park Authority said that it hoped the public inquiry would be completed by the summer. The Reporter’s decision will be final as there is no further right of appeal. If the Kinrara section gets the go ahead, the extension of the Speyside Way is due to be completed in 2014.