Ben Nevis walkers could be charged to climb

More than 160,000 people tackle Scotland’s tallest mountain every year but they could so on be charged £1 for the privilege. The Nevis Partnership conservation body that looks after the path up the mountain wants climbers to contribute to the cost of its maintenance.

The fee is said to be needed to pay for work on the route up to the 4,409ft summit, which needs constant maintenance due to wear and tear.

The Nevis Partnership has hired two contract teams, Highland Conservation Ltd and Upland Contracts Ltd, who are currently working on a mile-long section of path 2,000ft up the mountain.

A spokesman for the Nevis Partnership, Brian Wilshaw, said: ‘The £1 fee would secure our future and the future of the maintenance of the Ben track. That small donation would make all the difference.’

In a recent interview, Owen Llewellyn, the team leader of Highland Conservation Ltd, said: ‘The old path was unbelievably rough, it was basically a boulder field. It is incredible the gear that some people go up Ben Nevis in…really inappropriate footwear and clothing. It’s crazy. So this path certainly makes it a lot easier’.

‘Ben Nevis is hugely popular, so surely people can pay just £1 a time in order to go up this wonderful mountain. It is surely a small price to pay.’

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