UK Construction Media

£4M repairs for Cumbria’s flood-damaged trails and footpaths

News   •   Nov 21, 2016 16:39 GMT

Cumbria’s tourist trails receive £4M boost to repair flood damage caused by storms and extreme weather last December.

Floods Minister Thérèse Coffey has today announced a £4M boost to repair flood damage caused by Storm Desmond last December.

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) is providing £4M for the work, with £3M going towards new project, “Routes to Resilience”, where work is to be carried out within the Lake District National Park, which suffered £5.8M of damage to footpaths and bridges. The work will start in January and last 18 months.

Storm Desmond had a severe impact on the Lake District National Park, leaving 257 missing or damaged bridges in need of replacement or significant repair, 165 public footbaths with surface damage, undercutting or lost to rivers and 108 damaged pieces of access furniture, such as gates, stiles and signs.

Public rights of way will be reinstated and improved across the Lake District and rural Cumbria, reopening connections between rural towns and villages, providing easier access for visitors to explore attractions and long-distance trails on foot.

Richard Leafe, Chief Executive of the Lake District National Park, said: “This year we’ve made a start on repairing some of the areas most affected by the floods, but with limited funding from our own resources and donations, it’s been a challenge.

“This £3m will allow us to launch our extensive recovery programme that will not only reconnect flood-damaged public rights of ways, but also make them more robust and resilient for the future.”

The grants will benefit tourists, reassuring them that the Lake District is back open for business, and Cumbrian residents.

Floods Minister Thérèse Coffey said: “This new £4m fund will mean visitors and residents can continue to enjoy all parts of the Lake District.

“We remain committed to continuing to help the people and businesses of Cumbria recover from the devastating winter floods.”

Cumbria and the north of England were left with damages costing more than £500M after last December’s storm. The government says £150M has already been spent aiding flood hit areas.

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