One of the Isle of Wight’s network of coastal footpaths was formally reopened on 16th October at Castlehaven in Niton. The restoration of the Village Green and the NT46 footpath are the result of many years’ work between the Isle of Wight Council’s Rights of Way team and Niton and Whitwell Parish Council with assistance from Gift to Nature and the Niton Harbour Club.
Councillor Dave Stewart, Leader of the Isle of Wight Council and Ward Member for Chale, Niton and Whitwell, said, “This is great news for the local community and people will be able to enjoy this unique location for years to come. Congratulations to the Parish Council and the Isle of Wight Council for all their hard work. As Ward Councillor, I am proud of what has been achieved and look forward to enjoying this community asset. Well done everyone.”
Graham Biss, Managing Director of Natural Enterprise said “Castlehaven Village Green is the newest site in our Gift to Nature portfolio and has some of the most stunning views. We realise how important it is to local people and visitors and have enjoyed working with Niton and Whitwell Parish Council to enhance its appearance”.
Former Parish Councillor Jon Young commented, “It’s taken a great deal of effort over many years to achieve this result. In my seven years on the Council, NT46 was rarely off the agenda. We stuck with it, as did our Isle of Wight Council friends, and I’m delighted that this right of way is at last available for everyone to enjoy.”
Cllr Tim Addison, Chairman of Niton and Whitwell Parish Council, said, “Footpaths and bridleways provide essential connectivity in a rural parish. We are particularly proud of the work we’ve undertaken in partnership with the Isle of Wight Council. Our Council prioritises the sustainable management of our assets for the benefit of all residents and visitors.”
The recent works are part of the first phase of the restoration of the Village Green, which the Parish Council sees as a long-term project. Working in partnership with Gift to Nature and alongside the Niton Harbour Club, it aims to create a safe and functional public space that provides a natural habitat which is sympathetic to its environment. Further details may be found here
Pictured at the opening are , left to right, Wilf Payne, Niton Harbour Club; Royston Batcoe, Castlehaven Harbour Master; Peter Wells, Gift to Nature volunteer; Nick Webb, Gift to Nature Ranger; Cllr Dave Stewart; Darrel Clarke, Isle of Wight Council Rights of Way Manager; Cllr John Hobart, Isle of Wight Council Cabinet Member for Heritage and Environment; Vickie Ford, Clerk to Niton and Whitwell Parish Council; Mark Donovan, Chairman Niton Harbour Club; and Carol Flux, Project Manager at Natural Enterprise.
Cllr Dave Stewart and Darrel Clarke check out the newly opened stretch of footpath NT46