Thousands enjoy getting out to explore in East Dunbartonshire
A Facebook group set up to encourage people to “walk, run, cycle in and around East Dunbartonshire” has attracted nearly 5000 members.
It was founded last May by Lorna Thomson after she and her two sons, Zakk and Jett, moved to Kirkintilloch at the start of the pandemic to temporarily live with her parents Jim and Lesley Hood.
The family started to explore the local area and as a keen walker Jim showed his daughter many new places.
She was then inspired to set up the Facebook group to allow everyone to share routes.
Lorna said: “My dad always enjoys walking and had done all the Munros and the John Muir Way.
"He also did a lot of walking locally and was an East Dunbartonshire Council walk leader.
“Where my dad’s shoes hadn't been locally was not worth visiting, and thanks to him, my boys and I were able to find lots of new places to walk.
"Instead of posting the photos of these routes to my personal Facebook profile, I decided to set up a group for people living locally so we could share photos and ideas."
Originally named “walk, run, cycle in and around Kirkintilloch”, the group changed its name to “walk, run, cycle in and around East Dunbartonshire” in January.
Lorna said: "When restrictions eased and we were able to travel a bit further I opened it up to everyone living in East Dunbartonshire.”
The page now has more than 4,900 members, including many from Bearsden and Milngavie.
Lorna said: “It’s a great group and members can get ideas, tips and upload their favourite walks.
"Everyone lives in East Dunbartonshire and it’s a very positive environment, which I am very proud of.”
Sadly, Jim passed away in October of a cardiac arrest.
Lorna said: “We are all devastated, but what a lovely legacy top leave behind.
"Dad got so many people enjoying walks in and around East Dunbartonshire during such a difficult year.”
Lorna also offered the following safety advice for anyone who is planning to go out walking.
She said: “Please walk with a buddy, stay to well lit area, do not ventrure off grid and let someone know what your planned route is.”