The British Horse Society (BHS) and Tarmac have collaborated to ensure that a local bridleway is fit for the future. The vital project started yesterday (19th April) and with the help from considerable grants from the Tarmac Landfill Communities Fund, will enable crucial maintenance work on bridleway 504, from Binsted and Kingsley to Frithend. The work will help to connect more than 50 miles of route including Shipwright’s Way and Alice Holt Forest and will make the route safer for all users. The work is set to be completed by early July.
The route has become extremely unsafe due to its inadequate drainage. Overtime it has excessively deteriorated making it tremendously dangerous and unusable. There are areas where users sink over a foot in depth in clay. In the summer it is even more hazardous as the clay ground hardens into deep holes which can break horses’ legs and injure other users. Overgrown vegetation forces users into barbed wire fencing which several people have become entangled in. As a result, riders, walkers and cyclists are forced to use the very hazardous B3004, which is heavily used by HGVs.
A total of £77,438 was put forward for the project, £50,000 of which was kindly granted by Tarmac through the Tarmac Landfill Communities Fund. The remaining funds were secured from the BHS Ride Out Fund, Binsted Parish Council, South Downs National Park, Hampshire County Council BHS local Hampshire Committee and the local Ramblers committee.
Tracy Casstles, Director of Fundraising at The British Horse Society said: “The partnerships formed here to restore this unsafe route highlight the importance of our access efforts and how the work benefits many people in the local community. We’re delighted that this work will allow groups such as equestrians, cyclists and walkers access to safe off-road access opportunities.”
Emma Smith, community engagement manager at Tarmac said: "It's great that we have been able to support the British Horse Society with this project. We hope that the work to restore the bridleway will mean the local community can enjoy it for many years to come."
The work in Hampshire illustrates the work of the BHS to ensure that all riders and carriage drivers have access to a safe network of off-road routes.
Visit here to see more of the work we do at here at The British Horse Society to improve the countries Access & Bridleways