Work has begun to build a new pedestrian underpass to the east of the main ring at the Royal Highland Showground.
Royal Highland Show organisers – the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS) – said the construction of the new underpass was part of a £1.6million investment in facilities ahead of this year’s show.
The underpass, which is due for completion next month, will allow pedestrians to carry on moving around the show when livestock are entering and exiting the main ring as the livestock will cross over the top to ease congestion.
RHASS chairman, Willie Gill, said: “This underpass is yet another demonstration of the society’s committment to sustaining the Royal Highland Show’s position as a world class event. By improving the flow of livestock and people though the showground, everyone’s experience is improved greatly. Less hold ups mean there’s more time to enjoy our celebration of the best in farming, food and rural life.”
Other improvements being made as part of the £1.6million investment include the fist phase of remodelling of the north car park. This year around 20,000sqm of resurfacing and drainage has been carried out and a new improved layout complete with new roundabout and entrance has been created. Further improvements to the car park will be made over the next two years.
RHASS has also confirmed plans to install full-site wifi and a hard-line fibre ring system which will enable internet connections to be installed anywhere on site and wifi to be accessed both indoors and out.
The Lowland Hall foyer will also undergo a revamp with refurbishment of the west foyer, entrance and toilets. The work, which is set to be completed by May, is part of a three-year project to modernise the hall.
Lastly, construction work on a brand-new members’ pavilion will begin immediately after this year’s show.
RHASS said: “The new multi-functional building, which will replace the existing MacRobert Pavilion, will cater for the species requirements of the Royal Highland Show while providing a year-round flexible mix of spaces that can be used for various functions throughout the year as part of the Royal Highland Centre’s portfolio of venues.”
Earlier this month RHASS unveiled plans to create “an environment that encourages less drinking”.
Following problems at the Herdsman’s Bar at last year’s event, the society announced a number of changes to licensed premises on the showground.
The Herdsman’s Bar is to be abolished and instead replaced with two bars – one at the site of the former pub and another to be set up in the south-east corner of the showground.
Old drinking haunts – the Cheers Bar, the German Bar, the Quaich, the Heather Bar, the Stag and the three bars in the members’ pavilion – will remain along with a licensed restaurant and a bar at the show dance.
RHASS has also introduced a number of new rules including the introduction of a new code of conduct for the members’ area and a ban on visitors being able to carry or consume alcohol when walking around the showground.
This year’s Royal Highland Show takes place on June 23-26.