Perth path perfection (and puppies)

Yesterday at St. Magdalene’s Hill in Perth, the keen students from Perth College started upgrading the path at this local beauty spot which is very popular with dog walkers.

job cancelled
The original path surveyed by the students

The group had been looking forward to restoring the path they had surveyed last month and returning it to its former glory.  However on inspection at the site, the bridge that their path led down to had been removed, and therefore the path could not be done :(.  Not to be phased by this the Path Skillz team and the group found another path in equal need of TLC and set about improving it.

group path before upgrading
Plan B: The path before work commenced

At this new site the group identified the problems of blocked drainage ditches, overgrown vegetation and the state of the path, which had become overgrown with moss.  After a health and safety talk the group discussed how they would split into teams and decided on what the best tools for the job would be on their section of path.

left hand drain before clearance
Blocked drains either side of the path 😦

The first (very mucky) job to get done was to unblock the ditches situated further up from the path intersection.  This involved getting into the ditch and removing all the vegetation and debris that had clogged up the drainage ditches on both sides of the path.  John and his group made an excellent job of clearing this and by lunchtime had improved the drainage so well that a small pool had started to be created by the amount of water that was now free to drain away.

john flowing ditch
John opening up the ditch to create a small pool once they had been cleared of debris

Down at the main worksite the group started to mark out the new edges of the path and began to excavate the material that had built up over many years.

digging the line
Draw the line – The group starts on creating the edges of the path.

The group worked hard throughout the day and with good humour, only stopping for a quick lunch break (and to give the dogs that passed a quick clap – the highlight of which was a small puppy who didn’t want to leave):).  The group really enjoyed seeing all the different dogs throughout the day as the area is extremely popular with dog walkers.

(Editors note – yes, we did mention on the risk assessment about dogs but when they are this cute you can be forgiven for giving them a bit of affection)


group working on path
Caroline, Moving On tutor, gives a helping hand

The group continued into the afternoon,  not only working on the path surface but also using loppers and bow saws to cut back vegetation to create good sight lines and to expose way-markers that had become a bit lost underneath small shrubs.

another wheelbarrow of soil
Another wheelbarrow of soil gets removed from the path surface

The amount of work the group did, and the standard of the work was really appreciated by passers by who commented that in the short time they had been on the site they had made an amazing difference.  The group themselves were quite pleased with what they had achieved and are keen to return next week to develop another path to make it a pleasurable experience for the people who visit St. Magdalene’s Hill (especially if they bring their cute dogs to help inspire the students). :0

caroline richard morgan
Another cute puppy is spotted on the horizon 🙂

Unfortunately the students did not get the opportunity to write a blog for the day but they all really enjoyed working outdoors in the sunshine.  The quality of their work shows their commitment to finishing the path to a good standard as can be seen in the pictures at the end.

path in sunshine at end
The larger section of the path completed by the students
waymarker forked path ditch
The two sections of the path completed which included creating a new drainage ditch after they had cleared away all the vegetation

Well done Perth Path Skillz 🙂




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