Over the last year, we have been busy creating a path running through the newly replanted woodlands to the East, South and West of the Cathedral site.
This was all made possible through funding from FCC Communities Foundation, a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community, conservation and heritage projects in Scotland, using funds donated from the Scottish Landfill Communities Fund. These grants are derived from the tax charged on everything that gets sent sent to landfill and are all about encouraging the re-use, recycling and recovery of waste. This fits in well with the values which underpin the Cathedral of Trees charity where we have a strong commitment to sustainable working methods in our restoration, maintenance and developmental work.
The hardcore stone which forms the base of the path all comes from an onsite quarry pit on Cathedral land. For the surfacing stone, we are again really grateful to Glensanda Quarry for donating a very generous amount of their beautiful sparkly crushed granite – the same surfacing you see on the Cathedral’s interior paths. It looks great – snaking towards the hills
The main contracting work was carried out by Ian McCuish, Landscaping Services, who worked long and hard, forever careful not to disturb the natural environment more than was absolutely necessary.
We hope the path will be of special benefit to the Learning Support and other groups who use the site, but we believe that it will also enhance the visitor experience for everyone – giving spectacular views to the surrounding hills and over the Cathedral itself. A mini pilgrimage path – less than a kilometre long!
It is hoped that the path will give rise to other ideas and initiatives and it seems things are already starting to happen. Branching Out, the Woodwork group at Green Shoots gardening project have made us 2 benches, soon to be installed along the route and, later in the year, we will be planting some native birch trees in a spiral form – part of the Green Canopy Platinum Jubilee Initiative.
When you next visit, give the path a go. Carry on down the Cathedral’s central nave, then wind your way behind the altar and out into the open. The path will take you back to the entrance at the west end – where you started – but you will have had some lovely moments along the way.