Keswick Railway Path - update from LDNP Jan 2016

Background

Our initial assessments identified a number of key issues along the length of the route from Keswick, at the A66 flyover, through to Threlkeld village. Following Storm Desmond two major bridge structures and approximately 200+ metres of track bed had been washed away, two other remnant railway bridges had potential damage to their abutments and land slips had created a potential threat to over 180 metres of high-level boardwalk/cycle path. As a result sections of the path, including structures and bridges were closed off. These closures remain and we ask people to take notice of these cordons and do not cross them.

Up-date

A structural survey of the route has concluded that the abutments of one of the remaining railway bridges, across the River Greta – Rawsome Bridge (NGR NY 304 245) are severely damaged and the consultant engineer has advised that it is in “imminent risk of collapse”. Therefore we are advising the public not to cross or pass underneath the bridge.  

To date the route across the bridge remains closed off and we have placed a warning notice and cordon at the canoe access point at Threlkeld Bridge (NGR NY 314 246). The damaged bridge is just over a km downstream from this point - the third footpath bridge. Due to two further bridge collapses downstream there are underwater hazards present in the main stream of the river, such as trees and debris from landslides – even bits of caravans. Local kayakers have warned that the river is now very different to what it was before the flood - it is harder and much more committing. We will be providing more warning signs upstream of the bridge.

I would like to reassure you that we do appreciate how important this route is for recreation and local business and that we remain committed to restoring and reopening the route as soon as possible. We are currently looking to secure both short term re-connection of Keswick to Threlkeld using alternative routes and the longer term restoration of the railway path to provide access for walkers and cyclists

Please visit our website for more information on rights of way Lake District National Park - Rights of way - Cumbria floods update.