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Marie Jacques and Jennifer Matheson are walking eight sections of the Moray Coastal Path to raise funds for Active Travel Forres while recommending how they can be improved

By Garry McCartney

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Marie Jacques and Jennifer Matheson setting off from Grant Park.
Marie Jacques and Jennifer Matheson setting off from Grant Park.

A PAIR of local pensioners are reviewing a scenic 50 mile stretch on foot to see how it can be improved.

Keen walkers Marie Jacques and Jennifer Matheson are travelling the Moray Coastal Path from Forres to Cullen in stages while raising funds for Active Travel Forres (ATF).

Marie explained: “We want to know the roads and footpaths around the area - with all their warts! We are looking at accessibility and suitability for wheelers as well as walkers. We will also be looking at the availability of public transport to access and return from each leg.”

The women have already walked from Forres to Findhorn and Findhorn to Burghead. They will complete the remaining sections: Burghead to Hopeman; Hopeman to Lossiemouth; Lossiemouth to Kingston; Kingston to Port Gordon; Port Gordon to Findochty; Findochty to Cullen over the next few weeks.

“Approaching old age affects us both,” said Marie, “however we are looking forward to the wonderful and varied scenery, and seeing the autumn wildlife across Moray. We’ve already seen an otter in Burghead Bay!”

Sponsorship forms for the pair are available at Forres Town Hall.

Marie and Jennifer hope also to raise awareness of ATF which works in partnership with other groups to identify, improve and extend routes for walkers and wheelers, making journeys in and around Forres as safe and easily accessible as possible. ATF members assess problem areas around Forres and raise the issues with Moray Council and national politicians. They are also trying to raise funds for improvements. So far they have got four kerb drops included in the local authority’s budget, called for a pathway to be built alongside the A96, highlighted problem areas on Victoria Road and St Leonard’s Road while offering solutions, and paid particular attention to routes taken by school pupils. ATF hopes to raise further funds through sponsorship and a coffee morning, organise a logo design competition, produce information leaflets and work with the wider community on more safe travel solutions.

For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/785618812545475/

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