Monday, 3 March 2014

Alma Bridge: "lifeline" for residents and tourists alike

There is concern about how to deal with cliff erosion - both short-term and long-term:
Futures Forum: Sidmouth Beach Management Plan Steering Group - questions for the consultation event: Thurs 6th March

The immediate concern is the closing of Alma Bridge.
And this will have a direct effect on the tourist trade: walkers might not be tempted into Sidmouth's high streets if they have to go such a long way round: 

Sidmouth - Alma Bridge - cliff fall

Feb 24th 2014: There has been a cliff fall close to the path above Alma Bridge (Grid reference SY 128873) on the east side of Sidmouth. We are awaiting  a cliff safety assessment to be completed to assess whether the path is safe to use, and so in the meantime walkers are being diverted inland to the next bridge.
Walking eastwards along the Esplanade, turn left down Ham Lane (before you reach the Lifeboat Station and Alma Bridge). Continue past the Tourist Information Centre along Mill Street passing the Swan Inn on your left. Continue along Mill Street, crossing the River Sid on the footbridge at the ford. Keep left along Milford Street. At the bridge turn right, almost back on yourself, into Beatlands Road. Follow Beatlands Road back to Cliff Road and the South West Coast Path.

Affected walks

The following walks may be affected by the route change:
Sidmouth - Alma Bridge - cliff fall - Diversion - South West Coast Path

The closing of Alma Bridge also directly effects residents: similarly, getting into the car might as well mean a trip to the supermarket rather than to the high street:

Home - Sidmouth Herald

The steps from the beach to Alma Bridge have been washed away by the sea.

SIDMOUTH: Coastal defence group holds its first meeting

View From Online - News from West Dorset, East Devon & South Somerset

Sidmouth's Alma Walkway closed for safety reasons

Cliff path eroded near Alma Bridge
Friday 21 February
The Alma Walkway along the mouth of the River Sid has now been closed for public safety after a landslip caused by the storms and flood water. This is until further notice.
Earlier EDDC had erected barriers along the edge of the walkway, but it is now considered too dangerous and unstable.
Our photo shows the damage to the foundations of the Alma Walkway
East Devon District Council - News

The bridge is an important part of Sidmouth's past:

10. Alma Bridge to be Designated as a Local Historic Asset

Whilst it is known that the Alma Bridge is not eligible to be ‘Listed’ it should be designated as a ‘Local Historic Asset’ and receive adequate protection.


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