The Greenock Cut is ranked in the top 50 walks in Scotland and has some of the most spectacular views in the country. What makes this walk that extra bit special is that the Greenock Cut is a registered Ancient Monument, designed by Robert Thom and constructed in the 1820s to supply water to the area’s industries; shipyards, sugar refineries and mills. An initially unplanned by-product of the design was that it also filtered clean drinking water to the residents of Greenock.
In fact the town was still using the cut as a source of drinking water until 1971. Robert Thom has recently been recognised for his massive contribution to the area’s industrial past with a memorial plaque in his name by the Cut Visitor Centre (Cornalees). At the Cut Visitor Centre, there is a museum which details Robert Thom and the Greenock Cut in more detail.
To walk the cut is to truly experience the enormity and ambition engineering such a task would have been nearly 200 years ago. The cut ( as well as the Kellie Cut) is around 6km long in distance and is carved alongside some fairly difficult terrain. To imagine that the construction would have been pure manual labour with the aid of mere pickaxes, shovels and the odd wheelbarrow is very hard to fathom nowadays. Along the walk there are various bridges which were intended to keep farm animals out and allow easier access for workers. There are also a few bothies where workers would have slept or stored their tools.
The area also carries much significance historically since Roman coins were discovered whilst building the IBM buildings in the 1950s. Other evidence of a Roman presence in the area was uncovered under Loch Thom during a freak drought in the area. It is believed that this road, along with a few others in the Clyde Coast area are part of the Antonine Wall network.
More recently, the Greenock Cut and Loch Thom are famous for saving much of the town during the Greenock Blitz in May 1941. The homeguard lit fires in the hills to mislead the Nazi Luftwaffe into dropping bombs over an unpopulated area, although I am sure the sheep were not too amused. These fires saved countless lives and although areas of the town were badly damaged, the outcome would have been a whole lot worse.
The views from the cut are second to none, and on a clear day, you can see as far as Loch Goil in Argyll and the striking mountains on the Island of Arran. If you join us on our walking tour, we will guide you along this walk, detailing sites of historic significance and helping you to spot famous geographic sites too. Be prepared to meet some of the local wildlife and of course the odd sheep on the trip. We also have various photo opportunities along the way to help you take a little bit of your trip home with you.
We hope to see you soon!
We are currently running a Groupon deal on our walking tours. If you are a Groupon customer, please note that you will have to bring your voucher on day of tour and let us know when you would like to come along.
To let us know when you would like to come along and to make sure that there are enough spaces for you, please book your slot either online, remembering to enter one of the following voucher codes or by calling us to book over the phone on 01475 779166
Walking Tour for 1 person: Groupon1
Walking Tour for 2 persons: Groupon2
Walking Tour for 4 persons: Groupon4
A trilingual service is operated; French, German and English.
See a birds eye view of the West Coast of Scotland, Arguably one of the best views in the whole country.
Walk alongside the Cut, a Scheduled Ancient Monument that was designed and built by Robert Thom that fed Greenock’s industry and provided clean filtered water to the residents of the town until 1971.
Tour ends at the Cut Visitor Centre where you can visit the Cut Museum and enjoy refreshments at the shop or cafe. Toilets also situated here.
Included: bottle of water, travel to and from designated meeting point in Greenock town. Contact us for more information or confirmed upon booking.
Please note the walk is classed as moderate to difficult and is around 2.5hrs - 3 hrs long; and therefore a reasonable level of fitness is required. This tour is also weather dependant and appropriate clothing is advisable. Contact us for more information.