Improvements to South West Coast Path in Dorset proposed

Natural England has revealed plans for improvements to the South West Coast Path between Lyme Regis and Rufus Castle on the Isle of Portland. The proposed 67km route would connect with the section between Rufus Castle and Lulworth Cove, where work is currently underway.

The proposed new route would allow the path to run closer to the sea, but would include a simpler process for bringing the path inland where erosion occurs. Natural England said the proposals would improve public access, and would ‘resolve the well-known and long-standing difficulties with maintaining a continuous walking route along this eroding coast.’

Fran Davies, Natural England’s Area Manager for Dorset said ‘We are proposing improvements to the existing South West Coast Path route which, if approved, will include additional and improved walking rights and give unparalleled views from Dorset’s well known and stunning coastline. We’ve worked closely with landowners, businesses and farmers on the plans and thank them warmly for their time and constructive conversations so far. It’s taken time to get the proposals to this point – we rightly have to consider the potential impacts on the protected and vibrant natural heritage of the area.’

Cllr Peter Finney, Dorset County Council’s Cabinet member for environment and economy, said: ‘Dorset is very proud to be among the first counties in England to have a large part of its coastline dedicated to the England Coastal Path. This additional 67km will allow increased access to our beautiful and historic coastline for residents and tourists alike.’

Any comments and objections to the proposed route are invited, and must be submitted to Natural England by 5pm on 2nd September 2015.

Follow the link below to the Natural England website to read further information on the proposal, including details on how to comment: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/england-coast-path-lyme-regis-to-rufus-castle