A NEW path network across a South Ayrshire estate has been opened in a bid to encourage walkers and outdoor enthusiasts in the area.

The Cairnhill Group, which operates butchery brand We Hae Meat, has cleared overgrown vegetation, surfaced paths and put in user-friendly signage and way-finders within the Dalquharran Estate in Dailly.

Their work has resulted in the creation of an 11km path network on the estate, between Girvan and Turnberry, that is accessible for all, including disabled visitors. 

The path network was officially opened on Friday, November 17, with a celebration event and ribbon cutting ceremony attended by pupils and teachers from Dailly Primary School and Early Years Centre and members of the local community. 

In advance of the opening pupils of the school were offered the opportunity to take on the role of cutting the opening ribbon.   

Pupils were asked to write a few words on how they felt about the new path network and why they would like to be the one to open it.

Grace Barr from P6 was chosen from the responses, because of her comments about how important it was to have the paths accessible.

Grace said: “This has allowed me to go on walks with my papa, who needs a wheelchair, and my aunties who have prams, to see wildlife, wildflowers and nature at its best.” 

After the ribbon cutting, pupils walked and ran the ‘Yellow Walk’, a 3.5km circular path featuring breathtaking views across the estate. 

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The focal point for visitors to the estate is Dalquharran Castle, a substantial roofless mansion house originally designed and built by Robert Adam in around 1790.

The estate includes two 'castles' - the old one abandoned around 1800 and the new one, actually a mansion, which was habitable until the 1960s. 

The Cairnhill Group bought the estate in 2019 and since then has invested heavily in bringing it back to life and this new path network will allow the public to enjoy the estate in a safe way.

Gillian Bone from the Cairnhill Group said: “It was clear that the estate was held very dear in the hearts of locals when we bought it and was a favoured destination for walkers.

"The work we’ve done and the improvements we’ve implemented will make it much more enjoyable for them, but also crucially it has made it a lot more accessible for everyone including children in pushchairs and wheelchair users. 

"The Paton family, owners of the Cairnhill Group, are proud to have lived and worked in the Dailly community for five generations and wanted to improve the estate and create something for everyone to enjoy.” 

Louise Morrison, head teacher at Dailly Primary School & Early Years Centre added: “We are very keen to be part of any local initiative which encourages our families and local people to be more active and to explore the great outdoors.

"The new path network looks amazing and our school and early years centre plan to make great use of it."