Public urged to voice views at exhibitions

Members of the Save Bennachie campaign visited Holyrood recently to voice their concerns
Members of the Save Bennachie campaign visited Holyrood recently to voice their concerns

Local campaigners are urging members of the public to join the fight to save a north east landmark.

The Scottish Government has committed to dualling the A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness by 2030.

Members of the Save Bennachie campaign fear that a proposed high level route across the foothills of Bennachie may still be under consideration, and they are asking members of the public to find time to attend a public exhibition and voice their views on the matter.

Campaign member Margaret Garden said: "It's vital that everyone who cares about Bennachie comes to these meetings and lets Transport Scotland know how much we value our precious landscape.

"We have received widespread support for our demand to completely rule out routes that damage Bennachie and the surrounding area, but at this stage we have not received any guarantees.

"It is important that Transport Scotland and their consultants understand the depth of feeling on this issue. We have a shared responsibility to protect Bennachie for future generations."

The initial route options for the A96 dualling project will be on show at two public exhibitions at Inverurie Town Hall on Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 October from 12 noon to 7pm on both days.

Public consultations will also be held in Huntly and Blackburn.

The Huntly event will be held at Stewarts Hall on Wednesday, October 10, and the Blackburn event will be at the Kinellar Community Hall. These two events will also run from 12 noon to 7pm.

Representatives from Transport Scotland and Amey Arup will be at each meeting to answer any queries.

Margaret added: "Bennachie is a national treasure which should not be blighted by road noise or fumes. We want future generations to enjoy the same landscape which has been valued for hundreds of years. We must not give that up without a fight.

"Bennachie is known and loved in Aberdeenshire and far beyond. These exhibitions are a critical moment when we must let officials know how important Bennachie is to the country as a whole."