Walking is a popular activity in Huntly. Local people can be seen out on a variety of well-used and interesting paths, tracks and pavements in and around the town at all times of year. Various recent studies have identified that Huntly is a potentially excellent base for walking holidays into the wider hinterland.
However, the studies also identified actions needed before Huntly can genuinely market itself as a walking destination:
- Improvements to infrastructure e.g. bridges, paths, signposts & interpretation boards, and agreement of a maintenance regime to ensure they are kept in order.
- Provision of appropriate maps and information booklets
- Securing of Walkers are Welcome status for the town (preferably along with similar initiatives in Keith and Dufftown)
- Training for local guides who can provide personalised walking experiences for visitors
- Undertaking of marketing efforts to promote the area e.g. website information, organisation of a walking festival, etc
All of the above are required to develop Huntly as a great place to walk and should be undertaken as a cohesive project.
HDT actions undertaken to date include:
- Creation of a new footpath along the B9022 Portsoy Road
- Production of a new guidebook to Walks Around Huntly and District
- Training of six local volunteer walking guides to deliver themed routes
- Securing ‘Walkers are Welcome’ status for the town
- Hosting the first Huntly Walking Festival in April 2010
We are now looking to build on these and would welcome community feedback on what improvements to walking infrastructure they would like to see next.