New plea made for old footpath in Holbeach

Walking along Skinners Chase footpath are Couns Carol Rudkin and Francis Biggadike, Helen Scott, district councillors Rita Rudkin and Martin Howard, Rebecca Crunkhor, (front) William Reeves and Hollie Crunkhorn.
Walking along Skinners Chase footpath are Couns Carol Rudkin and Francis Biggadike, Helen Scott, district councillors Rita Rudkin and Martin Howard, Rebecca Crunkhor, (front) William Reeves and Hollie Crunkhorn.
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Campaigners have renewed their efforts to get a popular footpath in Holbeach improved before it becomes a “hazardous combination of mud and uneven surfaces”.

More than 200 people have signed a petition for a county highways team to repair Skinners Chase which links Langwith Gardens to Spalding Road.

The footpath is used regularly by children and parents going to and from William Stukeley Primary School and elderly people walking into Holbeach town centre.

In a letter read out at a meeting of Holbeach Parish Council on Monday, George Ashton of Langwith Gardens said: “Despite requests going back many years, and even petitions in the past, the footpath is still in a poor state of repair.

“When it rains, it floods and when it freezes, it becomes solid with ice.

“The rest of the time it is a hazardous combination of mud and uneven surfaces.

“The footpath is used by the elderly, young mums and children, so this matter needs urgent attention before someone has an accident along it.

“I am over 80 years old and along with others, we find it totally unacceptable.”

The issue has been ongoing since 1978 when the county council was told about the footpath while deciding on whether to give planning permission for a development in what is now Littlebury Gardens and Stukeley Gardens.

County highways officers have been reluctant to repair the footpath which it claimed was a private road and not its responsibility.

Holbeach county councillor Nick Worth said: “The reason Skinners Chase is in this state is because it’s not actually registered as a public footpath, but I’m hopeful that we’re fairly close to resolving that now.

“There was also the fact that a lot of people’s deeds said that they may have to contribute to any resurfacing work that goes on down there.

“We’ve put a lot of pressure on the highways department to resolve the matter and I’m hoping to get some good news in the spring or early summer at the latest.”