Monday, March 07, 2011

Scotland: Protesters promise summer of action on highway to Highlands - Full Article

EXCLUSIVE By Rob Edwards Environment Editor

6 Mar 2011

Countryside campaigners angry at being barred from a historic route across the A9 in the Cairngorms are planning a series of protests that will blockade the road and delay motorists.

Unless the government’s Transport Scotland digs a tunnel or builds a bridge at Crubenmore, just south of Newtonmore, it will have “blood on its hands” because people will be killed attempting to cross a new dual carriageway, they claim.

Walkers, cyclists and horse riders are demanding politicians commit to constructing a crossing in the next few weeks. Otherwise, on April 20 they will launch a summer of protest walks along the A9 that will delay traffic.

“If our protests are unsuccessful, I am quite prepared to drive up and down the A9 roadworks all summer with my horse and carriage to show my contempt,” said Ruaridh Ormiston, who runs Newtonmore Riding Centre.

He is furious that dualling the A9 will prevent him from taking pony trekkers along one of the old military roads built by General Wade to control the Jacobites in the early 1700s. The route is also popular with walkers, cyclists and local people...

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