Plans have been launched to create a cycle path between two of Moray’s coastal communities, amid fears that the main road is dangerous.
The Lossiemouth Community Development Trust claims that motorists routinely get “too close for comfort” along the B9040 route between the town and Hopeman.
Janet Trythall lives at Covesea, on the outskirts of Lossiemouth, but says she feels unable to walk or cycle into the town along the road.
She describes the narrow stretch, which has a 60mph speed limit, as “extremely unsafe”.
The pensioner said: “I have no option but to take my car for short trips into Lossiemouth, which is a perfectly cycleable distance from my home.”
Melanie Newbould leads a local female cycling club called Belles on Bikes and says that even venturing one mile from Lossiemouth to a Covesea cafe can be a “terrifying experience”.
She said the group was now intent on resurrecting decade-old blueprints to connect Lossiemouth High School to its feeder primary schools along the coast with a cycle path.
The 2007 feasibility study was funded by Moray Council and the pro-cycling Sustrans organisation.
Cyclists are now raising funds to commission new research, in the hopes that the old plans can be updated and finally turned into a reality.
Ms Newbould said: “I lead rides for Belles on Bikes, and we often visit the Aroma Café at Covesea.
“Even a short cycle along the B9040 can be a terrifying experience.
“The path connecting Duffus to Burghead, however, is a much more pleasant cycling experience and a great path for walkers, runners and skaters alike.
“It would be ideal to get the route extended to include Lossiemouth, which would give a traffic-free cycle option all the way from Burghead to Lhanbryde.”
During a recent public gathering in Lossiemouth, the group handed out forms in an attempt to harvest the experiences of cyclists along the B9040.
The survey asked for people to report any “scary encounters” they have had involving vehicles along the road.
Yesterday, it emerged that 62% of those canvassed indicated they had experienced such an encounter, and 93.5% said they would be more likely to run or cycle along the road if there was a dedicated path there.