Milngavie in Bloom
Milngavie in Bloom was formed in 2008 and is an enthusiastic group of local people interested in gardening and the protection of the local environment. In 2019, the group was awarded a Gold Medal Certificate and the VisitScotland Award for Tourism in the Beautiful Scotland campaign in the Medium Town category.
In 2019, Milngavie in Bloom won the 'VisitScotland Discretionary Award for Tourism': It is well known internationally that Milngavie is the starting point of the West Highland Way, Scotland’s first long distance walking route that was officially opened by Lord Mansfield at Balmaha on 6 October 1980. Each year since, tens of thousands of walkers complete the entire length of 96 miles from Milngavie to Fort William or tackle a section of the Way. Until recently, apart from the granite obelisk in the pedestrian precinct, there was little else to signify the importance of the Way to Milngavie or recognise the contribution of the late Tom Hunter, who first proposed the Way. Inspired by the statue erected at Balmaha to the late Tom Weir, climber, author and broadcaster, Milngavie in Bloom decided to rectify this situation. As a result of some very generous donations, the group commissioned a statue in the profile of a striding walker. East Dunbartonshire Council cleared the raised bed located on one of the main roads into Milngavie and the group contacted local companies who kindly donated a membrane, laid gravel and boulders, constructed a concrete base, installed the statue and planted the bed with a variety of plants and a slate path to symbolise the typical landscape of the Way. The group has also commissioned a plaque to inform residents and walkers about the statue and held a ceremony to dedicate the statue to the memory of Tom Hunter.