Dagenham footpath to be reopened after campaign

Footpath 47 will reopen after a campaign against its closure appeared in the Post this week

Footpath 47 will reopen after a campaign against its closure appeared in the Post this week - Credit: Archant

A footpath that was closed “illegally” for more than a year will be re-opened following a campaign by residents featured in the Post this week.

Keen walkers were outraged after public footpath 47, which runs from Choats Road to Renwick Road in Dagenham, was closed without warning last July.

A “No entry, private land” sign appeared at the entrance without explanation on the land which was being used as part of a construction site by developers Barking Riverside Limited.

But after a flurry of exchanges between Barking and Dagenham Council, residents and the developers, Barking Riverside has finally come foward to announce its re-opening.

“The limited access from Choats Road to footpath 47 has caused a number of concerns for people who had previously enjoyed free access through the site and down to the River.

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“In order to ensure safe passage along the route, BRL needs to install suitable fencing, and I can therefore confirm that we have procured the erection of new fencing to protect the route from construction movements.

“We target the installation of this fencing in August 2015 with a target to open the access by 30 September at the latest.”

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BRL, who had put up the private entry notice without realising it was on public land, said that they had taken the step of blocking off the path due to “earth movements” that needed to be undertaken as new secondary, primary and special educational needs schools are made on the site.

Campaigner Morrison Road resident Joan Rawlinson added:

“It just shows what a bit of public press can do.

“Whilst I’m happy that the footpath is going to be reopened, I’m still very angry that authority can get away wiht that illegal closure for so long.”

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