Footpath debacle sees costs soar

DELAYS to a controversial new footpath linking Gorleston and Hopton caused by a residents' blockade are causing costs to escalate, Norfolk County Council revealed this week.

DELAYS to a controversial new footpath linking Gorleston and Hopton caused by a residents' blockade are causing costs to escalate, Norfolk County Council revealed this week.

Work on the new cycle/footpath in Warren Road between Gorleston Squash Club and Hopton Holiday Village was due to start on May 4, costing �80,000.

But county council spokesman John Birchall revealed costs were mounting after work was stopped when a parked vehicle prevented council vehicles reaching the site.

Instead, the council is considering taking legal action to adopt part of the unmade path about 30m in length close to Cliff Cottages at the Hopton end to prevent a repeat of the blockade.


You may also want to watch:


Mr Birchall said extra cash would be needed to cover the cost of the council's contractors for the project, as well as the extra man hours involved as a result of the delay. He could not say how much more it would cost.

He added: “Inevitably, it is going to cost more in terms of time and perhaps advertising. We need to make sure we have got the best advice on the best way of getting this thing through. We have got a lot of interested parties and we need to make sure we deal with them properly.”

Most Read

Residents are being invited to give their views on the plans before the council seeks to formally adopt the road.

The residents fear the path development will lead to the council seeking to adopt their road, which is maintained with their money, while their other objections were that cyclists using the new path could be a hazard to pedestrians and that the development could adversely affect trees and wildlife.

However, earlier this month Mr Birchall denied the council was breaking laws which protected trees and birds, saying the trees would not be cut back until the latter stages of the development.

The aim of the scheme is to create a safe cyclepath for children travelling from Hopton to Cliff Park schools in Gorleston because the current path beside the A12 is considered too dangerous for the children to use.

The council has received support for its plans from 3,000 Gorleston and Hopton residents, including Hopton Parish Council chairman Mike Butcher.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter