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Work starts in Newquay to improve footpath access to Fistral Beach

One of Newquay’s most popular footpaths is set to benefit from new surfacing and better drainage, easing access to the UK’s most famous surfing beach.

As part of the Beach Access Capital Programme, Cornwall Council and Cormac will begin works to improve the access to Newquay’s Fistral and South Fistral beaches. This will create better approaches to the shore via the path through the town’s golf course and via the South West Coast Path.

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Works will begin on site on Wednesday 15 January lasting six weeks.

Occasional closures of some sections will be necessary, but as much as possible will remain open at any one time.

Local Cornwall Councillor, and Portfolio Holder for Transport, Geoff Brown, says: “This public footpath is one of the most popular in the town. The works will improve drainage after heavy rain, providing a better surface and easier gradients for mobility vehicles and pushchairs. There will also be better access to South Fistral and the Coast Path.

"We want everyone to be able to enjoy our coast and these magnificent views, so I am really pleased to see these improvements underway.”

Public Footpath through golf course

This provides direct access to Fistral Beach from the town, and as a result is very well used in both in the summer and winter. Unfortunately, the path also suffers from drainage issues which have affected its surface, and as a result it becomes washed out and gullied after heavy rain, making it difficult to use. The works will provide a fine bitmac surface and address these drainage issues. The new surface will extend from the Toby Way all the way through the golf course along the current route.

Extension of Bitmac path to Golf Terrace

In order to improve connectivity the improved surfacing will be extended east along the footpath, past the clubhouse, to connect to Golf Terrace.

A new wooden staircase to access the beach

Access to and from the beach will be improved at the southern end with the installation of a wooden staircase. This will replace the old steps that have fallen into disrepair, and will give another option to join or leave the beach, especially when the steps at South Fistral are not accessible due to high tide.

Widening and improving the path from South Fistral (South West Coast Path)

Although the majority of the Coast Path from South Fistral to the car park is easy to walk, there are sections where it presents problems for mobility vehicles or those pushing prams. Although the path will not be surfaced, parts will be widened and the gradient reduced. There will also be a new viewpoint and a number of passing places created.

Beach defence works

Due to the increasing frequency of strong winds and storms, sand from the dunes often blows onto the footpath making it unusable. It is hoped that this can be reduced through the planting of native species on the current access route. This planting will reduce sand blowing into the dunes. It will also stabilise the dunes at this location.

Easy access route to the car park from the footpath

An easy access route, which will also be surfaced, will link the north end of the footpath to the car park. This will be at a gentle gradient, and allow year round access.

Story posted on 8 January, 2019