Corstorphine residents celebrated success on Monday 25 November following the completion of works enabling residents to walk more for every day, local journeys.

Kate Joester, Project Coordinator for Walking Connects, was in attendance along with Scotland’s Project Coordinator Anne Docherty and Project Assistant Lara Jenkinson, acknowledging the project’s success, as many residents can now reach the local shops and bus stop, instead of feeling isolated in their accommodation.

Residents using pathway

Kate Joester fills us in with a quick overview from the 3 years of the campaign.

Kirk Loan residents gathering Kirk Loan residents read pavement guide

Living Streets Scotland worked alongside Kirk Loan residents to conduct a street audit, detailing the problems with the road.

We then helped the residents’ group contact the correct councillors and other elected officials in order to work with the roads teams at Edinburgh Council, to help them understand the impact that the damaged pavements and lack of drop kerbs had on Kirk Loan residents.

Edinburgh Council agreed that these concerns were valid, as the street had so many residents with mobility problems. Summer 2019 saw the council undertake and complete all the street repairs identified by the residents in their audit.

The residents are proud to have achieved this change themselves, and now feel empowered with knowledge on how to request safer streets in the future by using the Guide to Getting Better Streets and Pavements, which they co-produced with Living Streets Scotland. 

There is still some work that Kirk Loan residents would like to see done – such as shop fronts being more accessible for those who use wheelchairs and walkers – which they discussed while getting out onto the new pathway, which makes accessing St John’s Road easier and safer.

Over lunch, the residents shared their happiness (and humour!) at what the new pavement means to them and how it has changed their every day walking:

“I think it’s a damn good thing we’ve done here.”

“It’s made a big difference.”

“It’s a lot safer to walk on.”

“I miss tripping over the slabs, that was much more fun.”

“I’m thinking about going back to my roller skates!”

Kirk Loan Residents

Empowered Despite Dents

One resident did comment on how changes “have not stopped people driving onto the pavements on the double red lines”, as well as the new railings having already been driven into, knocking one end sideways.

Sheltered Housing Coordinator for Trust Housing Jo Grayland has already reported the problem, highlighting that this community is determined to keep up the current improvements, and rally for more!  

They are hopeful that, with the contacts they have made and the success they have had so far, they will be able to work with both the council and shop owners to make residents even more regular customers on St John’s Road, enriching the local community and encouraging a sense of belonging once more.

Download the guide to getting better streets and pavements