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Walkers are putting their best foot forward with the revamping of a scenic footpath along the River Tees.
A £35,000 grant from the Forestry Commission has enabled Stockton and Tees Borough Council to complete work surfacing a one kilometre all weather path through Bassleton Woods, near Thornaby.
The trail forms part of an ambitious 14 kilometre (8 ¾ mile) circular walk being built around Thornaby village, which is designed to get more people out and about.
The Forestry Commission has also revealed that it plans to award a further £61,000 to the Council to build a similar 1.5 kilometre trail in adjoining Thornaby Woods. It will also form another section in the proposed Thornaby Trail and work, which will which include the construction of two wooden bridges, is due to start in the summer.
Ian Everard, from the Forestry Commission, explained:
"Providing better access to woodlands is a great way to help people to take healthy exercise and improve their well-being. Early signs are that the trail is being very well used by walkers, which is extremely encouraging."
Councillor David Rose, Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for the Environment, said:
"There are attractive areas of woodlands, parks and nature reserves right across Stockton Borough, often right on the doorstep of many residents. Grants such as these from the Forestry Commission help people of all ages and abilities to access our natural greenspaces and enjoy the benefits of the great outdoors. The new path has made all the difference to Basselton Woods and we are very grateful for the support.”
The grants have been made under the English Woodland Grant Scheme. For more information contact the Forestry Commission on 01669 621591, or visit www.forestry.gov.uk/northeastengland
Note to Editor
- Forestry Commission England runs the English Woodland Grant Scheme (EWGS) to protect, improve and expand our forests, as set out in the government's Natural Environment White Paper www.defra.gov.uk/environment/natural/whitepaper/
- EWGS is a part of the Rural Development Plan for England (RDPE). Further information about these schemes can be found at www.defra.gov.uk/rural/rdpe/index.htm
- Forestry Commission England is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands.
Media calls: Richard Darn on 0775 367 0038.