Improving our Pavements and Footpaths

A close up photograph of a pavement

Highcliffe & Walkford Parish Council has very recently set up a working group of Councillors and volunteers to seek ways to improve our pavements throughout the parish.

The group is looking outside of the High Street area to see what can be done to improve the cleanliness and safety of other pavements and footpaths in Highcliffe and in Walkford. This work will seek to enhance the important contribution already being made by the "Bloom" Group.

The Parish Council Chairman. Bob Hutchings said that this initiatives is not simply a talking shop; he added "we all know that we need to see improvements and that's what the group is intent on achieving".

The "Pavements" Group is led by Councillor Susan Smith who commented that maintenance in the past has been so poor that many of our pavements and footpaths are overrun with leaf mould, weeds and other detritus. The Parish Council understands that BCP has now invested in two new pavement sweepers for the Christchurch area and we expect to see them working around Highcliffe very soon.

In the meantime, because the new sweepers won't be able to handle some of the thickest of the accumulated vegetation we have to deal with that first. To identify the worst places the working group is surveying the main roads and footpaths in Highcliffe & Walkford (excluding the High Street because that is already being studied by our other Group "Revitalising the High Street").

'In the lead' so far in terms of awfulness are stretches of the Lymington Road west of the Medical Centre. At one point we have measured vegetation stretching over 1 metre across the pavement. Other stretches of the same road - and many other roads – are kept near spotless by those living nearby. Well done to them! We'd like to hear from anyone who already takes responsibility for clearing pavements outside their own and neighbours' homes. Perhaps we should have an award for the best kept road!

How can you help the Council? Firstly anyone wishing to help should contact the leader of the "Pavement" Group, Susan Smith (ssmith.campanula@gmail.com). One important thing you can do is tell her of the worst areas both on pavements and footpaths.

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