The Steall Gorge footpath

The Steall Gorge footpath

An outdoor trust has launched a cash appeal to help restore a mountain footpath famous as the scene of Harry Potter’s fight with a dragon.

The John Muir Trust earlier this year won a £25,000 European Outdoor Conservation Association grant towards the work in the Steall Gorge, but it still needs a further £60,000 to complete the work, which will cost £120,000 altogether.

The trust owns the land, as well as much of neighbouring Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain.

The JMT said: “The magical trail winds through native woodland, high above the fast-flowing Water of Nevis and opens out onto Steal Meadow, with beautiful views of An Steall Ban, Britain’s second highest waterfall.

“It was here that Harry Potter fought a dragon in a memorable scene in the film Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.”

Chris Goodman, the trust’s footpath project officer, said: “Every year, 40,000 people walk through the gorge, from families on day trips to climbers tackling some of the more challenging routes up into Ben Nevis and across to the Mamores.

“Sections of the path are under serious threat of erosion, with some areas in danger of crumbling away completely.

“We’re asking climbers, walkers and anyone who loves wild places and mountain scenery to help us with this vital work to repair this great footpath, maintain access, protect the glen’s fragile habitats and prevent future erosion.”

Journalist and broadcaster Cameron McNeish added: “Steall Gorge is a fantastic route into a stunning area of wild land, the sort of path that everyone should travel at least once in their lives.

“I’d urge anyone who loves the UK’s wild places to support the John Muir Trust’s appeal for funds to prevent its erosion.”

The project gained its £25,000 grant when it topped a competition run by the EOCA. Details of how to donate are on the JMT website.

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