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‘Chaotic’ scenes as closed path restricts access

The queues at the stile at Lover's Walk in Alnmouth ahead of the village's raft race.

The queues at the stile at Lover's Walk in Alnmouth ahead of the village's raft race.

Long queues of people trying to get to a community event at the weekend brought into sharp focus the issue of a closed path in a north Northumberland village.

The picture shows visitors to Alnmouth raft race on Saturday having to wait patiently to cross a stile due to the popular walkway known as Lovers Walk being blocked off.

About 75 metres of the village’s old harbour wall were pushed over onto the adjacent path in last December’s tidal surge. The top three courses of stonework plus the capping stones were left on top of the route, which is part of the Northumberland Coast Path, making it impassable.

A temporary path to bypass the blocked part was made by fencing off a parallel strip of the adjacent field and two stiles were put in to allow users to get over the existing fencing at each end, which causes problems for those who are less mobile or with pushchairs, etc.

Coun Bill Bourne, chairman of Alnmouth Parish Council, described it as ‘chaotic’ during the raft race.

“The parish council was, and still is, very concerned to get the original level of access restored to the path as well as get an historic and attractive landscape feature repaired and restored,” he said.

“Alnmouth is a popular holiday village, the tourist trade is important to it and features like its historic harbour should be maintained.”

 

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