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WATCH: Active project launched in Aberdeenshire towns

By Kyle Ritchie

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A new project has been launched in Aberdeenshire towns which aims to get more people out cycling and walking.

Aberdeenshire Bothy is spearheaded by Cycling UK, working in partnership with Aberdeenshire Council and is funded by Smarter Choices Smarter Places.

It will be working in the five integrated travel towns identified by Aberdeenshire Council through the Integrated Travel Town project (ITT), which are Ellon, Inverurie, Huntly, Fraserburgh and Portlethen.

The main aim is to help get more people out cycling and walking for everyday journeys and leisure within the communities.

The project aims to get more people out cycling in the towns.
The project aims to get more people out cycling in the towns.

Cycling UK's cycling development officer Anna Vince will be working on the project along with Emma Roberts.

Ms Vince said: "The Aberdeenshire Bothy is part of the Cycling UK Bothy programme, working with local communities to bring together organisations that promote walking and cycling activities and providing any additional opportunities that are required to help people get active on wheels or by foot, particularly in the aftermath of Covid-19 restrictions.

"The Bothy project in Aberdeenshire will focus on promoting accessible and inclusive cycling and walking opportunities, supporting residents first and foremost, and eventually visitors to the area, when appropriate to do so.

Anna Vince (right) and Emma Roberts will be working on the project.
Anna Vince (right) and Emma Roberts will be working on the project.

"The delivery and development of the Aberdeenshire Bothy will follow good practice from similar Cycling UK projects developed in Ardrishaig and Inverclyde, as well as expanding on the work already started in the five towns through the ITT project.

"Working with other local organisations we will also help to promote awareness and use of infrastructure and to support people within the five communities to overcome barriers and increase their use of more sustainable transport methods.

"Furthermore, these relationships will provide the opportunity to better utilise existing resources, such as adapted cycles and e-bikes in some locations, which will increase the inclusive nature of activities offered."

The project will involve people working with qualified cycle trainers, so new and returning cyclists will be able to brush up on their skills whatever their experience level.

A series of cycles will be held in the five towns, which will be for small groups and will be aimed at those returning to cycling; families; and those looking to meet like-minded people.

Alongside this, the project will offer small group walks, which will support current health walks; involve route planning; be social; and ideal for families.

There will also be active travel events that will be held with partner organisations and there will be volunteering opportunities for those who wish to support their local communities – whether it be through cycling or walking.

A variety of cycle rides through the five towns have been filmed, including the video below in Inverurie, that can be viewed on the YouTube channel for cycle ride inspiration.

For the latest activities and news people can follow the project on Facebook or send an email to aberdeenshirebothy@cyclinguk.org

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