Beauty spot where Robert Burns met up with his lover to be upgraded

By Lucy Christie, Press Association Scotland

A romantic spot said to have been shared by Robert Burns and his lover Mary Campbell is to be upgraded as part of a community project to improve paths.

Local volunteers in South Ayrshire have received a £1,500 grant from the charity Paths for All to restore an ancient walkway in the Ayr Gorge Woodlands reserve.

The site is purported to have been a meeting spot for the Bard and the woman known as Highland Mary, often credited as his muse.

Wooden steps on the path will be restored (Gillians Walks/PA)

Colin Clark, chairman of South Ayrshire Paths Initiative, said: “We’re all eager to restore a significant part of Ayrshire’s history, so we were delighted to be awarded the grant from Paths for All to help us do this.

“The route is incredibly scenic and can be enjoyed in all seasons. It’s our hope that restoring features like the deteriorated wooden steps and installing new way-markers will make the path accessible to more walkers.

“We’ll be carrying out the work alongside volunteers from the Scottish Wildlife Trust and will have completed the project by February next year, when there will be an official opening of the improved route.”

Ian Findlay, chief officer at Paths for All, said: “Upgraded paths really build on community spirit as they’re more frequently used by commuters, dog walkers, joggers, children playing and people enjoying the simple but very important pleasure of just going for a walk.”