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Kat’s Green Belt Walk Blog

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Circumnavigating Greater Glasgow’s Green Belts

Over the past few months I have been walking around the linked Green Belts in 10 local authority areas around Glasgow. In my weekends and days off I have managed 27 separate sections totalling over 300km and have nearly completed the route.

I started out from my home in the Green Belt of East Dumbartonshire near Milton of Campsie, and walked through the countryside around Cumbernauld, Airdrie, Coatbriedge, Wishaw and Motherwell, Larkhall, Hamilton and East Kilbride and then started heading homewards via Paisley, Lochwinnoch, Port Glasgow and Helensburgh.

Part of the adventure has been mapping a route, using paths and potential paths from the Rambler’s Scotland Paths Map Project. Our Greenbelts are amazing places for wildlife, landscapes and for recreation and I have been documenting each section of the walk as a blog. My aim, as well as to raise money, is to learn about the importance of our Green belts, experience them first hand and meet those who are campaigning on behalf of our Green Belts.

I am raising money for APRS – Scotland’s Countryside Charity, who I started working for in December. It’s a brilliant charity so please give generously.

Anyone who gives £40 or more will get a membership of APRS as a Thank-you!

I hope to highlight how special green belts are for the people who live in the central belt and find some brilliant paths and places to visit on the way. I am one of these people who is always heading off to the highlands for my walks, but who discovered some real gems on my doorstep in northwest Glasgow during lockdown, now I am going to explore all around the greenbelt of greater Glasgow and see what I can find.  

The walk so far….

Blogs from the walk are below the photos – to join one of the walks please scroll down.

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Kat brings journalist Dan Vevers along on her latest Green Belt walk which takes them past a mysterious rock formation with carved faces, a cave behind a waterfall and a the derelict Lennox Castle.

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APRS Director Kat Jones is spending some of her weekends and evenings exploring Green Belts with the aim to circumnavigate greater Glasgow and surrounding towns. In this section she walks part of the Antonine Wall from Kilpatrick and finds how much of our own infrastructure and landscape today relates to Roman civil engineering.

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Planning for her next green belt walk, a treasure hunt for Neolithic rock carvings at Cochno, near Faifley, Kat discovers they are under threat from a large Battery facility.

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This year’s family Boxing Day walk had to be another section of Kat’s circumnavigation of Glasgow’s green belt. She dragged three generations of her family out to navigate past ruins from a medieval chapel and a castle, to a masterpiece of Brutalist architecture. They encounter railway, dual carriageway and river crossings and a farmer determined that they won’t be allowed across his land.

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APRS Director Kat Jones is spending some of her weekends and evenings exploring Green Belts with the aim to circumnavigate greater Glasgow and surrounding towns to raise money for APRS.

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Kat has reached Weymss Bay on the Clyde coast on her 20th day of walking Glasgow’s Green Belt. This walk brings the joy of a perfectly level walk through mountain country – along the historical Greenock cut and the Kelly cut which were built as lades to collect water for the Mills of Greenock.

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On this walk Kat receives an education in greenspace infrastructure and environmental justice from Shivali Fifield of the Environmental Rights Centre Scotland and Clare Symonds of Planning Democracy. The walk takes them from one of the West coast’s most affluent villages to Port Glasgow which has health and inclusion statistics among the poorest in Scotland.

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This route is day 18 of Kat’s circumnavigation of the Greater Glasgow Green Belt and takes Kat over the hills of Clydemuirshiel Regional Park and to the very best cafe of the walk so far, discovering a geo-cache and exploring a well-defended ‘private’ estate.

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This route is day 15 of Kat’s circumnavigation of the Greater Glasgow Green Belt. Helen Todd of Ramblers Scotland joins in to chat about Access and campaigns and they have an encounter with a herd of Spanish Fighting Bulls.

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On this section of our Director Kat’s Green belt walk, she reaches Gleniffer Braes country park on the edge of Paisley, finds many memorials to loved ones on the way and discovers the Weaver Poet

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In this 15th section of her green belts walk, Kat tries to navigate via Core Paths and learns that, 20 years since the Land reform Act brought about a commitment to a Core Path Network, we are still very far from that ideal.

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On this section of our Director Kat’s Green belt walk, she encounters the first sustained downpour of her outings so far, but a Golf Course closed for access means it’s cut mercifully short.

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In this section of her green belts walk Kat meets a campaigner in Carmunnock and learns some of the tactics of the volume house-builders wanting to build on the greenbelt in some of the most sought-after countryside around Glasgow.

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Our Director Kat is spending her weekends and days off on a fundraising walk around the Green Belt of Greater Glasgow. This section takes her between South Lanarkshire’s two Country Parks – in Hamilton and East Kilbride.

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The latest episode of Kat’s fundraising walk around the Green Belt of Greater Glasgow. This section takes her from Greenhead Moss Community Nature Park on the outskirts of Wishaw down Garrion Gill, an SSSI and an impassable jungle.

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The Eighth part of our Director Kat’s fundraising walk around the Green Belt of Greater Glasgow. This time, a very short jaunt from Cleland to Carfin in North Lanarkshire via one of the largest derelict sites in Europe, Ravenscraig.

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Our Director Kat is spending her weekends and days off on a fundraising walk around the Green Belt of Greater Glasgow. This section takes her from Cleland to Greenhead Moss in North Lanarkshire.

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The fifth part of our Director Kat’s fundraising walk around the Green Belts of Greater Glasgow. This one from Airdrie to Carfin with plenty of chat about energy infrastructure, and a secret doorway.

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Circumnavigating greater Glasgow and surrounding towns to raise money for APRS. This adventure takes Kat from Castlecary to Kilsyth via woodlands, motorway, canal and castle.

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The sheer scale of the task at hand in circumnavigating the whole Greater Glasgow Greenbelt is starting to sink in, and the sheer lack of time I have at weekends and in days off to do this walk.

If you would like to come on a section of the walk, especially if you are a campaigner for your local green belt, please email kat@aprs.scot

Hear Kat speak about her Greenbelt walk in an extract from this webinar

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