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130411 | Seven-year closure water under bridge | This is Cornwall

As reported in The Cornishman/West Briton Thursday, April 11, 2013

Seven-year closure water under bridge

Thursday, April 11, 2013

 

A RIGHT of way in Hayle has reopened after falling into serious disrepair and being closed to the public for more than seven years.

Bridleway 22, behind Penpol Terrace, has been closed since the grade two listed former railway bridge it crosses became too dangerous.

Hayle Harbourmaster Peter Haddock stands on the reopened bridge on Bridelway 22. PZPM20130409A-002_C.JPG

Hayle Harbourmaster Peter Haddock stands on the reopened bridge on Bridelway 22. PZPM20130409A-002_C.JPG

In the years that followed, confusion and long-running talks over who held responsibility for the path meant repair works were delayed.

The 1852 bridge was taken on by ING Real Estate when it bought the harbour and in October the company agreed to pay for and carry out the work.

On Monday, ING's project manager Steve Reay said the work had been completed and the bridleway was now open to the public.

He said: "It is a listed structure so we had to go through the process of getting listed building consent.

"We replaced the timber deck structure that goes underneath it and put on a non-slip finish and replaced the parapets either side."

The work was estimated by the council to cost about £40,000 and included replacing the decking and non-slip surface of the bridleway and replacing the bridge's external girders and parapets.

Last year, Cornwall Council served enforcement papers on ING and on the Secretary of State for Transport, Justine Greening, whom it was thought might also be liable for some of the repair work. It became clear that the minister was not responsible for the right of way.

Talks continued between the unitary authority and the harbour owner, which plans to build a supermarket on South Quay, and a last-minute agreement stopped a possibly lengthy legal battle.

ING had been hoping to carry out the repairs at the same time as doing work on the harbour and South Quay, using Section 106 money – paid by developers towards local improvements as a condition of planning consent for developments such as South Quay – to fix the bridge.

Three days before court proceedings were due to start, ING agreed to carry out the repairs ahead of its other works in the town.

John Pollard, Cornwall councillor for Hayle North, who was involved in the discussions, told Hayle councillors last week: "It was with great delight that I watched (it) being repaired at long last."

Hayle harbour master Peter Haddock, who organised the contractor used to repair the bridge, said: "It (Bridleway 22) falls under the harbour, which is part of the ING estate. The public were making comments when the work was being carried out and there was nothing but praise for it being reopened."

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