New ‘Alma Bridge’ feasible for Sidmouth

PUBLISHED: 09:59 18 March 2011

Councillor John Dyson

Councillor John Dyson


New river bridge at Sidmouth is feasible, Pathfinder delegates hear

A NEW bridge across the River Sid is a possibility, delegates of a Pathfinder meeting in Sidmouth have been told.

At the meeting, hosted by Devon Maritime Forum, Sidmouth town councillor Simon Pollentine explained how a new bridge could be sited 40 metres upstream at a higher level and joining the existing footpath on the east side at its first Z-bend.

Councillor John Dyson, who attended an earlier DMF meeting this month, said both Defra and the Environment Agency were re-examining the position after the Pennington Point area had eroded more than expected.

Mr Dyson said Keith Steele, technical officer at East Devon District Council, had confirmed both Government agencies were actively discussing the matter.

He said: “My particular concern has been the Alma Bridge crossing which is of importance both to residents living on the Eastern side of the river and also for thousands of coast path walkers.

“As chairman of the Parish Paths Partnership (P3) that is my particular concern and as a result of these developments the fate of Alma Bridge is getting more attention now.

“It was suggested that with expenditure on further protecting the bridge abutments may be justified in the near future and of course the district council and town council have already pledged £10,000 each to support any work required.”

He said until recently Defra had treated the whole of Salcombe Cliffs, east of the River Sid, as not worth saving but to let nature take its course.

Now it accepts, with significant erosion at Pennington Point, that for 50 metres east of the river they are now “managing the retreat”.

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