A new cycling route linking Inverness-shire and the Black Isle has been put forward by Highland Council.
A section of the pavement running parallel to the A862 Beauly to Muir-of-Ord road will be widened to create a shared path with pedestrians and cyclists.
The finished route will create a pleasant walking and cycling link between the two villages. The council is currently tendering for contractors for the work.
However a local councillor, who has generally welcomed the move, highlighted concerns about removing the existing oak trees lining the edge of the footpath.
The new contract, worth £65,000, was put out to tender on Thursday and the deadline for applications is Friday, November 28.
The first phase of works will involve widening a 710-yard section of the pavement from 5.9ft to 8.2ft. It will also include dedicated crossing points and advisory white lining.
The expected contract award date is January next year, with work likely to start in February.
Candidates must first pass a selection procedure before being invited to tender or negotiate.
Councillor Helen Carmichael, Aird and Loch Ness, said: “It’s a stretch of road just out of the speed limit. It can be quite a fast stretch of road so I would be delighted to see any extension to footways and cycling is a great way to get around.
“The trees at the side of the road do have tree preservation orders on them because they are part of the feature of coming into Beauly, so I would personally not like to see any of the big oaks taken down.”
Muir of Ord based Sheila Wickens, community cycle trainer for Transition Black Isle’s Million Miles Project, said: “Anything to make it a little bit easier and more appealing to get on a bike is a good thing. It makes it safer too, as it’s quite a fast road already.
“It makes such a difference to get out and cycle. It is good for everyone’s health to get on their bikes and improving links from Muir of Ord to Beauly is very positive. It’s an easy cycle. Most people just think of hopping in their cars but a cycle route will make it more attractive.”