(f) Wales Coast Path Update -
T. Cottnam updated members on possible future plans in relation to the Coastal Access Improvement Programme, funding for which was due to end in March 2013. Her understanding was that the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) and Welsh Government (WG) were mindful of extending the funding to enable completion, for example, of legal work and to cover maintenance issues. A number of models had been put forward by CCW to WG for discussion / decision. T. Cottnam’s understanding was that, should funding continue, a similar model to that currently in place would exist, but at a very much reduced budget / grant level. As such, it was not clear whether her own role would be considered as a full-time funded post or whether such work would require to be absorbed within the Rights of Way Team.
In terms of updates on specific work:
· bridge work had been completed at Lavernock. Whilst, following inspection of the field margin, remedial work was not considered necessary, the position would be monitored following crop harvest.
· advertisements for creation agreements on the Heritage Coast and at Lavernock had been published. This constituted the final stage in completion of the agreements.
· urban signage installed before the official opening of the Coast Path had been reviewed and a number of additional posts installed and amendments undertaken.
· ceramic paviers had been installed in a number of pedestrian precincts.
· a number of revisions to incorrectly signed waymarker posts were being undertaken periodically.
· at Cwm Colhuw, a scheme for improvement of the path to the rear of the surf lifeguard station had been specified and costings sought.
· consultation was being developed in relation to Little Island (Friars Point). A field existed adjacent to the current unsurfaced path, which was classed as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation. It was hoped to create a new surfaced path inside the field margin, linking the headland to the harbour and car park. Given the nature of the site, the proposal was currently out to consultation.
· various enhancements had been made to the website in terms of the Coastal Access Improvement Programme.
· a national meeting of Coastal Access Officers in Wales held recently had included the group walking a section of the Coast Path (Cwm Mawr) in the Vale and with those involved being impressed with the facility.
During consideration of this agenda item, clarification was sought from a member regarding resiting the very steep path at Cwm Bach. G. Teague confirmed that this issue was being separately pursued with the landowner and the farmer.
Reference was also made to the potential (2kms) zone designed to provide loops / links to the Coast Path itself. T. Cottnam indicated that should the CAIP funding itself continue, the programme would allow for work to be undertaken in this area. Members were also informed that, once a decision had been taken regarding the continuation of funding and the model of such was known, the LAF would be informed and consulted on the issue.