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Pump track concerns raised

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By Christie Breen
Pump track concerns raised

CONCERNS and questions have been raised about the location and maintenance of the proposed pump track in Moffat’s Hope Johnstone Park.

The £125,000 project is a joint venture between Dumfries and Galloway Council and Moffat and District Community Council, and if approved, it would provide a BMX and mountain biking course suitable for young people and beginners.

However, a member of the public raised their alarm at Tuesday’s meeting of Moffat and District Community Council (MDCC), sharing worries that a pump track could fall into a similar state of disrepair as the park’s current half-pipe.

The lady said: “I’m really disappointed that the community council didn’t see fit to do anything about the skate park in Hope Johnstone that was put in before with a lot of public money and effort for fundraising.

“If you are going to support a pump track you must be prepared to maintain it. I would be against it if you’re not prepared to put money in to maintain it. We’ve got a lot of infrastructure in Moffat that is put in and nobody maintains it, like the roller rink at Park Circle, it’s unusable.

“There’s no point in putting new infrastructure in if it’s not going to be maintained.”

Questions were also posed by community councillor Jan Hughes, who was concerned about the suitability of the proposed location.

She added: “As adults looking at it, there’s a lot more going on, with keeping up the maintenance, there’s no drainage there. So when they install it, are they going to drain that field?

“One of the things about pump tracks is because of the materials they cannot be in any area where it floods or where water could get to it. It rains a lot here and that area of the park does flood. That will make it a lot harder to maintain and will lessen its lifespan.

“There are also concerns about the access point, that comes off the A701. That road get particularly busy in the summertime with loggers and motorbikes. So they’re not going to see the children accessing the park at that path and kids might not be looking for vehicles as they leave the park.”

In response to the concerns flagged, Annandale North Councillor Lynne Davies agreed to raise the various points at the next meeting of the Annandale and Eskdale Area Committee in May, stating: “We are now waiting on the report from the community engagement which will be brought to the committee in May.

“The decision about the pump track is left to the discretion of the councillors, and we will get the opportunity to raise all the questions that you’ve had here tonight.”


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