Major cliff falls and landslides in 1995 and 2001 between Lyme Regis and Stonebarrow diverted walkers from this now unstable and dangerous route to a long and unpleasant road diversion via the A3052. Now this stretch has been restored with two new sections of coastal path.
Lyme Regis Golf Club has generously provided access by creating a new footpath to bridge the gap between Lyme Regis and Charmouth, ensuring walkers have a fantastic experience on the coastal path.
Dorset Council has worked with Lyme Regis Golf Club, the local community and the South West coast path volunteers to design this new course. It takes walkers safely off the road and away from the unpredictable cliff edge and offers stunning views of the beautiful inland hills and valleys, the iconic Lyme Regis and The Cobb, the Golden Cap and the coastline up to Portland, meeting both the needs of golfers. and walkers.
Tara Hansford, External Access Strategic Development Coordinator at Dorset Council, said:
“The path is clearly marked with road signs and a newly resurfaced path from both Lyme Regis and Charmouth takes you around and through the golf course and through the woods. If necessary, the path is protected by a security fence to protect you from the occasional flying golf balls!
“Watch out for the finger that wasn’t so lucky!”
“In the forest you pass through three parishes and come across two parish boundary markers – one by local craftsman Alex Brooks celebrating the stunning local topography and the other by local artist Greta Berlin celebrating local archaeologist Mary Anning .
“The course offers a variety of interests with many viewpoints. Locals and visitors who take the coastal path have expressed how much they enjoy this quirky new route and how great it is to get closer to the sea, get off the road and finally take a more natural path.
Additionally, Dorset Council worked in partnership with the National Trust and a local landowner who provided access to a new marked cliff top path for walkers from Charmouth beach to Stonebarrow. This route also takes the walker through a parish boundary gate which records alleged landings of Viking ships on Charmouth beach, designed and made by Alex Brooks, Emma Moloney and Tara Hansford – remember to close it while you walk to stop the cattle escapes.
Cllr Noc Lacey-Clarke, Dorset Council Senior Cabinet Member for Environment, Travel and Ports, said:
“Thank you to the local landowners, businesses, community, partners, volunteers, contractors, funders and Dorset Council officers for their commitment to addressing these issues on Dorset’s Coast Path.
“This project restores much needed links on the Dorset section of the Southwest Coast Path, helping to provide a great walking experience. The Coast Path is invaluable to tourism and the local economy, but these local connections also help connect communities to each other and the facilities they offer, supporting our Climate and ecological emergency strategy and providing highly valued networks that people take advantage of for recreation, health and well-being.
“These projects demonstrate strong partnership work – where working together yields a superb outcome for everyone involved. Thanks to the generosity of the Lyme Regis Golf Club and local landowners, walkers using the trail now have a great experience along this part of the Dorset coast.
This work was funded by the Rural Development Program of England (RDPE) / European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), the Southwest Coast Path Association and Dorset Council. The Parish Boundary Markers project was funded by the Coastal Communities Fund through the Dorset Coast Forum.