Timeline Phase 1: 2015 - 2017

We focused on the temporary short-term reconnection of Keswick to Threlkeld for cyclists and walkers, securing alternative paths and roads.

Early 2016:

We held public meetings at Keswick and Threlkeld to explain the scale of the impact and to secure an understanding of the importance of the route to people

Early 2016 to current date:

Communication channels were set up to ensure a regular flow of information on the project from our Area Ranger, including:

During 2016:

We made sections of the path and bridges safe and found some alternative routes for users

March 2016:

The raised boardwalk section was safely reopened, allowing people to use around half of the route from Low Briery to Brundholme Road

June 2016:

Around 65 people attended an update at Crosthwaite Parish Rooms, Keswick

June 2016:

Information signs were erected at path access points and have been regularly updated

November 2016

We appointed engineering consultants Capita to produce an Options Appraisal Report to evaluate all possible route options considering: cost, user needs, flood resilience, durability, buildability, environmental consents and stakeholders views

November and December 2016:

Capita consulted with the public, statutory bodies and stakeholders to present the route options (initially seven which was reduced to three following public feedback), this included engagement events in Keswick and Threlkeld and an online survey to understand more about user needs

December 2016 to January 2017:

More than 2300 people (including over 50 businesses) responded to the survey describing the use they had enjoyed pre-Storm Desmond and hoped would be provided in any future trail development.  Walkers, cyclists, runners and people with limited mobility (those wishing access with prams, wheelchairs and for those with infirmity or instability) made up the demand. It was recognised that the route serves local, regional and national needs being a local resource for Keswick residents and for visitors to the national park it is also a promoted section of the Sustrans Coast to Coast cycle path. There wasn’t a specific question about the surface choice; we wanted to know what people needed or preferred to do to aid decisions on route location and design

December 2017:

The National Park Authority agrees a report on the need and value of creating a new trail and agrees to be accountable body for any grants secured to construct a new trail

January to March 2017:

A Value for Money appraisal was undertaken to underpin any business case for grants, sponsorship and donations. The appraisal considered several factors including economic and social aspects. It identified a reconnected route could bring £2million back into the local economy per year, support up to 60 jobs, and that for every £1 spent on the project it can deliver £9.50 of value in relation to employment, spend in the local economy, and health and wellbeing

January to March 2017:

Capita commissioned to undertake an initial feasibility study paid for by the LDNPA. It identified seven possible routes to create a link between Keswick and Threlkeld for walkers and cyclists. From the range of options presented to the public it was reduced to three that met people’s needs and preferences in the closest way, and the most popular was the original route, with some modifications to accommodate unrecoverable damage and opportunities for improvement such as re-opening tunnels

May 2017:

We opened a new 3.5km alternative walking route between Keswick and Threlkeld via a permitted route through Brundholme Woods, including new signage on site, carried out in partnership with Eden Rivers Trust apprentices. Although not suitable for people with limited mobility or pushchairs and not accessible by bicycle, the route proved very popular and has provided an essential link between the two communities for local businesses.

Timeline Phase 2: 2016 - 2017 >

Timeline Phase 3: 2018 - 2020 >