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Bridleway nearing completion in the Yorkshire Dales
1:54pm Thursday 7th June 2012 in News
After more than seven years and thousands of hours of hard work, the last sections of the Pennine Bridleway national trail – a 52-mile route through the Yorkshire Dales National Park – are almost finished.
When it is completed, the whole trail will stretch about 200 miles from Derbyshire to Cumbria along ancient packhorse trade routes and drove roads that have been connected by new links.
The creation of the trail for mountain bikers, horse riders and walkers has been made possible to date mainly through financial support from Natural England and a Sport England award of £1.8 million. The section through the National Park from the A65 at Long Preston to the Cumbrian border was funded by Natural England, with support from the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) and North Yorkshire County Council, with additional funding from Yorkshire Forward.
Plans are now underway for an official opening of the whole trail by Natural England on June 12 in Clapham.
Peter Lambert, the YDNPA’s Pennine Bridleway Officer, said: “It’s fantastic that, after so many years of work, our section is almost finished – it will be one of the final pieces in the national trail’s jigsaw.
“It has been a long process involving a huge amount of planning as well as hours of discussions and meeting with farmers and landowners and all the other organisations whose help has been vital.
“There were times when the end seemed a long way off but we can all now look forward to the big day of the official opening.
“I would just like to say a massive ‘thank you’ to everyone who has helped us in the process – without them it wouldn’t have happened.”
The first section of the Trail in the Yorkshire Dales National Park – the10-mile (16km) Settle Loop – was opened in August 2005.
Anna Righton, Natural England’s Pennine Bridleway Project Manager, said: “I’m delighted to see the Pennine Bridleway National Trail being opened – it’s a fantastic Trail through some of England’s most beautiful landscapes and the best possible tribute to the hard work of our staff and partners. It’s very exciting that horse-riders and mountain bikers and walkers have this brilliant flagship route through the Yorkshire Dales.”
· Horseriders in the Yorkshire Dales National Park will be able to celebrate the launch of the National Park section of the Pennine Bridleway with an eight to 11-mile ride on June 17 from Horton-in-Ribblesdale.
The event is being organised by Ride Yorkshire, a non-profit organisation formed to promote horseriding in the Dales. Details about the event are available on its website at www.rideyorkshire.org and from Janet Cochrane on 01759 368303 or 07773422413 or by emailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org