Alnwick Freemen will have 'no dealings' with Greenway group over disused railway

Alnwick Freemen have hit back at ‘unjustified’ criticism of its role in the proposed creation of a new recreational route.
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Borderline Greenway Community Interest Company (CIC) had been in discussions with the Freemen over the use of a 780m section of the former Alnwick to Cornhill disused railway line.

They hoped to create a a 5.4 mile circular trail, but discussions collapsed over a request for Borderline Greenway directors to accept personal unlimited liability outwith the CIC.

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A petition calling on the Freemen to alter its stance was also launched.

A section of the proposed Alnwick Greenway. Picture: Borderline Greenway CICA section of the proposed Alnwick Greenway. Picture: Borderline Greenway CIC
A section of the proposed Alnwick Greenway. Picture: Borderline Greenway CIC

But the Freemen, in a statement, responded: “Following recent social media comments and an online petition brought to our attention targeted towards the Freemen, we feel the need to write to all key stakeholders within the community to convey the true situation and advise on our position regarding the plans to transform a section of the former railway on Alnwick Moor into a rural access track for the public.

“The online media being utilised to ‘rally’ the Freemen is a medium that the Freemen have no presence or representation within, and thereby no means to rebut or counter any messages posted, hence the need for this clarification.

“Contrary to some accusations and unjustified comments the Freemen (and the current tenants) have never prevented access to the land in question. Nor is there any intention to do so in the future.

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“Regrettably the Freemen have found, on repeated occasions, the actions and conduct of Borderline Greenway and its directors to be highly disrespectful, unwarranted, and far from community spirited in their approach towards engagement with the Freemen. Many written and verbal accusations made are simply inaccurate, unfounded, and even insulting.

“The Freemen will not enter into contract with such a company or persons that present themselves in this manner. To do so cannot be expected of any self-respecting corporation.

“However, as ongoing support and contribution to the town the Freemen will commit to the provision / construction of an access track, one metre wide with passing places where necessary, to complement the completion of the section of track over land belonging to Northumberland Estates.

“This construction and maintenance will be entirely managed and funded by the Freemen Borough of Alnwick.

“There will be no dealings with Borderline Greenway CIC.”

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