THRILL-seekers will soon be able to plummet 120 into a gorge in Scotland as the nation’s first permanent bungee-jumping attraction is set to open this year.
The £180,000 attraction at the famous Pass of Killiecrankie in Highland Perthshire will see jumpers leap into the gorge of the River Garry.
The project has been more than four years in the planning but work is now set to get underway on the UK’s first purpose-built bungee jump platform that will see daredevils pay £60 a time.
The attraction will be open to people over the age of 14 and will be launched on Friday 13 May to add extra excitement.
Health and safety experts at Perth and Kinross Council and heritage experts at the National Trust for Scotland (NTS) have had to give their consent for the project.
And several test jumps have already been carried out from a test platform.
Murray Trail, a New Zealander who runs Highland Fling, a company set up to run the attraction, said: “A huge amount of preparation has gone into this project and it’s taken a lot longer than we would have liked to get it off the ground.
“We actually got planning permission more than a year ago and we have got all the consents we need now.
“We’re making the final preparations at the moment, but we hope to open on Friday, 13 May as it is the same weekend as the Etape Caledonia cycle race and there will be an awful lot of people in the area.
“New Zealand is the home of the commercial bungee jump and there are lots of these platforms but this is the first one anywhere in Scotland.”
The location is close to the site of a battle between the Jacobites and government troops in 1689.
A fleeing government trooper escaped from the massacre by jumping 18.5 feet across the gorge and the site is still known as “The Soldiers Leap”.
But NTS officials insist the site will not affect any areas linked to the fighting.
Murray added: “Killiecrankie is so well known for being the site of the battle and the jump is obviously quite close to the location of the Soldier’s Leap viewing point.
“The National Trust is letting us use their visitor centre as a base and they’ve been really helpful.”
Ben Notley, property manager at NTS, said: “I know this partnership will raise an eyebrow or two but it brings mutual benefit to the trust, Highland Fling, the local community and visitors alike.
“By bringing more visitors to the site, we can do a lot of good for the local economy and use the opportunities provided to engage with a wide range of people to increase awareness and respect for the environment.”