Proposal for new access bridge and forest trail at Hamsterley Forest

Darlington and Stockton Times: Hamsterley Forest Hamsterley Forest

AN outdoor attraction is looking to boost its popularity with the development of some new facilities.

Plans are afoot to construct a new visitor access bridge and forest trail at Hamsterley Forest, in County Durham.

The current forest trail from the car park to Bedburn Beck, Poo Stick Bridge and the play area can get congested with cyclists, walkers and visitors with pushchairs or wheelchairs, during peak visiting times and Bank Holidays.

A planning application submitted to Durham County Council proposes to build a new multi-user bridge across Bedburn Beck, with a linking forest trail.

The document stated: “These additional, and needed, facilities will allow for a quicker exit from the car park into the forest for cyclists, instead of currently using the Forest Drive or cycling through the main trail where children access the play area.

“A new short circular route will be created using the new bridge and existing Poo Stick Bridge – elderly and less able visitors are looking for a nice short circular route and at present there not this facility on site.

“Forest events, such as children’s forest activities, will become more enhanced.”

The proposals are part of a master plan to develop Hamsterley Forest, which attracts up to 200,000 visitors a year, into a leading countryside attraction, supported by Visit County Durham.

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