MESSAGE FROM ALEX PATON RE DALQUHARRAN
Firstly I would also like to take this opportunity to highlight the fact that I am part of a local farming family that have farmed and been part of the local community for over 100 years now ( I am the 4th generation). I have no desire to harm in any way our local flora, fauna, wildlife or environment.
In regards to ongoing works at Dalquharran, we are trying to clear up around the new castle to prevent further decline of the building that the vegetation growth causes. We have installed over 2 miles of roadways and we are in discussions with various bodies in regards to installing further footpaths. I am very passionate that as much access as possible should be disabled friendly. The tree thinning and forest regeneration works also continue, I will come back to this later in my correspondence.
As landowners and as a family we want to encourage as many walkers and outdoor enthusiasts as we can to use and enjoy the estate. We do not want to prohibit anyone using and enjoying the estate as long as they are being responsible and adhering to the countryside code. Walking through crops or going into the derelict buildings has to be discouraged from a health and safety perspective as well as adhering to the country side codes regulations that clearly state that no one has the right to roam through cropped land or enter buildings. As many of you will be aware there are already paths throughout the estate that 99% of local people do stick to. In regards to the castles and other buildings on the estate, they are simply not safe for people to be in or around. We have taken steps to secure the new castle and have put up additional signage that warns of the dangers.
I am aware that there has been lots of rumours regarding what we aim to do with the castles and the estate. I have no idea what the future holds for Dalquharran outside of our farming plans, I can only say that as a family we have no desire to go into Dalquharran’s history books for damaging it, everything we have done so far has been to open the estate up and prevent further decline. I do also have plans to create a new fishing pond with a grass area and benches for locals to fish, relax and enjoy the outdoors. I will share more details on this once plans and approvals have been finalised.
I have had an on site meeting this week with our contracted forestry manager as well as the harvesting contractor. It has been decided for various estate management and best practice reasons that we will begin thinning trees in the areas shaded on the attached map on Monday 29th June. To keep everyone safe all access to these areas of the estate will be prohibited. I had hoped to allow access at nights and at weekends but I was advised by the forestry professionals that this would be a bad idea due to the dangers of unsafe timber. I will encourage the contractors to complete these areas as quickly as possible so that we can open access back up to the public in the minimum time possible. The felling permission number issued by Scottish Forestry is FPA-6873.
With this work in mind please note access to the estate from the village side will be closed on a temporary basis whilst this section of forestry work is undertaken.
Alex Paton and Son