|Hordle Cliffs: Old Path & New Steps|
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We have heard from a reader who describes herself as ‘A thoroughly grumpy Milford resident.’ This is far from their personality by nature, but the ‘grumpy feelings’ have been stirred due to frustration at the slow progress of works at Horde Cliff.
Regular beach and cliff top walkers may have spotted that the access to the beach huts at Hordle Cliffs has been closed since Easter, and there is clearly several more weeks of the “beach access project” work ahead. Progress appears painfully slow, and apparently there was one spell of almost two weeks when no progress was made at all.
It seems that the site of the new wooden steps is actually where the cliff erosion is at its worst, yet nothing appears to have been done to reinforce the bank which is now in a much worse condition after the workmen have walked all over it.
The work is also making access tricky for older beach hut owners, as the alternative steps are sometimes just too far away.
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Furthermore, there is a notice on the next set of steps down to the beach (next to the cafe), saying that “Work will start here in July”.
Our ‘grumpy resident’ has written to the Coastal Management Department at New Forest County Council, raising the following points:
‘Why have you chosen to ruin the “summer season” with totally unnecessary construction work, mud, mess and reduced accessibility to the beach at Hordle Cliff?’
‘Why are the council not taking the opportunity to create a winding path that could be used by wheelchairs and buggies?’
‘Do you realise that Milford relies on visitors and tourists to keep local shops and cafes in business?’
The council seem to do a great job maintaining the ever-disappearing shingle on Milford on Sea beach each year, and it is good to see investment continue on our seafront and geologically challenging cliffs.
However, the timing and progress on the project seem to have created some issues, and it will be interesting to hear the District Council’s take on the matter.