“A FRESH look” will be taken at potential options to create a safer link for people cycling and walking between Gullane and Drem.

Campaigners have been calling for an improved route between the two villages for 15 years.

Now, East Lothian Council and Sustrans – a national walking and cycling charity – are going to look at the project again.

The news was welcomed by Iain Monk, spokesman for the Drem-Gullane Path Campaign group.

He said: “We are delighted that East Lothian Council and Sustrans Scotland are joining forces to take a fresh look at designs for a safe link between Drem and Gullane.

“We are hugely encouraged by their commitment to make this happen.

“In the midst of a national pandemic and climate change emergency, it is vital that more infrastructure to encourage sustainable and active travel is put in place.

“We very much look forward to working with council officers, Sustrans staff and other stakeholders to finally make this path a reality.”

Campaigners have long been calling for a four-mile off-road path linking the two villages, which would take walkers and cyclists away from the busy B1345.

Last year, a comprehensive study ruled that a route was not viable at that time.

However, Sustrans has since reviewed the study and suggested new options where part of the route is created as an ‘on road’ solution, rather than as a route segregated from the carriageway.

As a result, East Lothian Council officers will, in due course, take a fresh look at the previous feasibility study to re-assess the possible options for delivery of the route.

The timing of this evaluation work is subject to confirmation given the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and its effect on operations.

A spokesman for the local authority said: “We are committed to identifying and securing active travel options across East Lothian, building on many such projects to have been delivered in previous years.

“While the feasibility study on the potential creation of a safer link for cycling between Drem and Gullane did not identify any viable solutions for the route, we welcome the opportunity to take a fresh look, having received helpful advice from Sustrans on its requirements.”

Sustrans was “pleased” to be working with the council and interested parties in a bid to “take a fresh look” at the options available for a safe active travel route.

A spokesman for the charity told the Courier: “We know many members of the community have wanted a suitable route for a long time and we are pleased to support them and the council to achieve this ambition.”