Victory for villagers in Snettisham Beach access row

Alphorn players Helen and Neil Grundy blow their 10ft instruments at Snettisham in celebration, afte

Alphorn players Helen and Neil Grundy blow their 10ft instruments at Snettisham in celebration, after villagers learned they had won their campaign to have the beach footpath declared a public right of way. Picture: Chris Bishop - Credit: Archant

Hundreds took to the beach at Snettisham to celebrate today, after villagers won their fight to have a disputed stretch of shingle declared a public right of way.

Locals and visitors will be able to enjoy views across The Wash from the top of the foreshore at Snettisham, after a government inspector threw out objections.

A handful of chalet owners claimed the mile-long track along the sea defences was private and had never been a public footpath.

But hundreds submitted written evidence forms to a public inquiry last month, saying they had been using the disputed route for decades. Earlier, more than 1,000 turned out to support a protest walk.

And now planning inspector Peter Millman, who chaired the week-long hearing at the village hall, has ruled that people should be allowed to do so.

More than 100 supporters gathered to walk the path, from where you could see across the bay to Boston at low tide yesterday.

They included a pair of visiting alphorn players, who blew a celebratory fanfare on their 10ft-long instruments.

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Eric Langford, chairman of Snettisham Parish Council, which led the footpath campaign, said: 'It's been a fantastic outcome, it's a brilliant result for the village. Now anybody can come and enjoy the lovely views, the lovely vista we have in the village.'

For full story and reaction, see tomorrow's EDP.

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