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Black Mountain walking trail consultation opens

Date: 22 Mar 2024

Micheal Donnelly from Upper Springfield Development Trust and Councillor Christina Black on Black Mountain with photo prop and text Black Mountain consultation

The public is being asked to have their say on proposals to create a new walking trail at the foot of Black Mountain.

The Black Mountain Pathway project aims to connect Ballygomartin Road with the Upper Whiterock Road.

Proposals also include the addition of new seated areas, visitor information signs and stockproof fencing to enclose the walking trail, protecting the public and the animals which graze in nearby fields.

Councillor Christina Black, Chair of the council’s Strategic Policy and Resources Committee said: “This is a beautiful part of Belfast with breathtaking views of the city, so these proposals will help bring out the untapped potential of the lower part of Black Mountain.

“The new pathway would create a fantastic asset for local people, helping them get outdoors, get more active and enjoy nature. It would also undoubtedly attract visitors who may not have considered visiting the area previously, as well as playing a significant part in the ongoing regeneration of the adjacent neighbourhoods and wider area.”

Belfast City Council is overseeing the project as part of its Access to the Hills Programme. Partners on the project include Upper Springfield Development Trust, Newhill Youth & Community Centre, Belfast Hills Partnership, National Trust, Department for Infrastructure, Department of Justice and Northern Ireland Housing Executive.

Niall Enright from Upper Springfield Development Trust said: “The team at Newhill Youth & Community Centre is delighted to be involved in the development of this historic and transformative project. The Black Mountain has long been at the heart of the lives of generations of local people who grew up enjoying walking in the hills and connecting with nature and wildlife.

“The development of safe and accessible walking routes and pathways will unlock the potential of the mountain and ensure that even more people get to enjoy the benefits of walking in nature, and learning about our indigenous wildlife, and our rich environmental heritage, all of which is located on this historic site.

“For over 30 years community activists have campaigned for the protection and regeneration of Black Mountain. It is crucial that local residents now have their say on the final shape of this transformative project.”

Drop-in information sessions where people can view the proposals and hear from project team will take place at Newhill Youth and Community Centre and Highfield Community Centre from 4pm to 7pm on 9 April.

The public can also view the proposals online and give their views at until 23 April.

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