Walk Route Closed After Assault

A scenic walk which drew visitors from home and abroad has been permanently closed following an alleged assault on the landowner.

Pat Dunne, who owns the land along the Zig-Zag walking track in Glenmalure, Co Wicklow, has decided to shut it down following the incident last Sunday.

The popular route, which is enjoyed by thousands of people and located entirely on private lands, provided access from the base of Carrawaystick Waterfall towards Lugnaquilla, Wicklow’s highest mountain.

The Zig-Zags was an “agreed access route” facilitated through a formal Permissive Access Agreement between Mr Dunne and County Wicklow Partnership. First developed in 2007, Mr Dunne was one of the first landowners in the country to permit an agreed access route across his lands.

Speaking about the closure, Mr Dunne said:

“I want it known that for the last 16 years, we have permitted open access to Lugnaquilla via the Zig Zags. The track and open mountain lands immediately above are private property. The only request in return for open access to our land was that no dogs were brought onto the mountain due to the disturbance they can cause to livestock. It is not an unreasonable request as we have had many instances of sheep being mauled by dogs on the mountain.

“The final straw came on Sunday at 11.10am, when after repeatedly asking a man and a youth accompanying him to not bring their three dogs onto the track, he physically assaulted me, before continuing up the mountain with the dogs. It is because of this that we have decided to revoke the permissive access agreement and close the trail to the public with immediate effect.”