8.3 Trails, Cycleways, Walkways and Linear Parks

closeddate_range22 Dec, 2020, 9:00am - 12 Mar, 2021, 5:00pm

​​​​​​8.3 Trails, Cycleways, Walkways and Linear Parks

There are a number of walking routes available in Kilkenny, through publicly owned and private lands – including long distance and looped walks and hiking routes[1].  Current trails (and rights of way) are depicted on Figure 8.1.  The Council will continue to identify and promote a series of walking routes within the city and county and to link these to a strategic network of trails where feasible.

Long distance walking routes in the county include the South Leinster Way (stretching from Graiguenamanagh to Piltown) and the Nore Valley Walk.  The Nore Valley walk currently has two complete sections; Kilkenny to Bennettsbridge and Thomastown to Inistioge. It remains a priority objective to complete the third section, from Bennettsbridge to Thomastown.  Trail Kilkenny are the lead agency in the development of this walk.

There are also over 15 linear, looped and community walks throughout the county that have been developed by various agencies, including Trail Kilkenny and Coillte.  The Council recognises the value of looped walks with public lighting in towns and villages, and will facilitate further development of such walks where feasible.  Two walks are currently planned; a looped trail around the slate quarries of the Lingaun River Valley, and a walk through Castlecomer.

Long distance cycling trails have been developed or are in various stages of development throughout the county through the work of a number of agencies. Trail Kilkenny have developed two long distance cycling routes (the East and North Kilkenny routes) and two cycle loops (the North and South Kilkenny loops).  A route links Kilkenny City with Carlow town with a total length of 44.5km. 

Slí na Sláinte is an innovative scheme developed by the Irish Heart Foundation, supported by the HSE to encourage people of all ages and abilities to walk for leisure and good health. To date there are nearly 220 routes around the country.

Slí na Sláinte is an important and valuable facility for every community. The widespread appeal is due to the fact that it provides an easily accessible and inexpensive environment for regular exercise.

Many GAA club grounds within county have developed walking routes around their facilities. They provide a perfect location for a Slí na Sláinte route. They are regularly frequented by the community; they are safe, well maintained and can work in harmony with the local club to promote the many health benefits of active lifestyle.  It will be the Council’s policy to support community organisations in the development of walking routes such as Slí na Sláinte.

It is Council policy to continue to assist with and support the development of the Nore Valley Walk and protect its route from encroachment by unsympathetic development.

Trails and Walkways Objectives:

8F           To continue the development of new trails and walkways such as the Castlecomer, Knockdrinna Wood and Ballyhale Looped Walks and the upgrade of others such as the Freshford, Gathabawn and Kilmacoliver Looped Walks and the Nore Valley Walk.

8G          Investigate the development of a horse trail/bridle path at Woodstock estate.

8H          To complete the development of the linear park along the River Nore in the area of the Abbey Quarter.

8I            To extend the linear park at the Abbey Quarter to link with the existing section of the River Nore Linear Park at Riverside Drive.

 

[1] A list of existing walking and cycling routes is included in Appendix C to this plan and shown on Figure 8.1.

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