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Swaffham public footpath access reopened after resident concerns

After residents voiced concern at a regularly used footpath being closed off, councillors have received a report that it will be reopened for public use this week.

Shepherds Fold, part of the Heathlands housing estate at Swaffham, was blocked despite being used as a popular cut-through to Dulgate Lane.

However, permission has been granted by Breckland Council to reopen a section of the fencing for public access.

Councillors Ian Sherwood and Paul Darby at the Shepherds Fold access
Councillors Ian Sherwood and Paul Darby at the Shepherds Fold access

Councillor Ian Sherwood said he came across the issue when campaigning for the local council elections in May with fellow Conservatives Ed Colman and Paul Darby.

"I have been in touch with the local people and spoken to officers involved at Breckland and it has taken us 60 days to get it resolved," Mr Sherwood said.

"It is a really local town matter and the good news is that this footpath is now open again. I think the establishment of footpaths historically is an important issue.

"It is the responsibility of Breckland Council who were concerned for the safety of the people using that access to go through to adjacent land in May."

This week, councillors Colman, Sherwood and Darby visited the site to see the new access.

Councillor Ed Colman at Shepherds Fold this week
Councillor Ed Colman at Shepherds Fold this week

And Mr Sherwood reported the news to a full town council meeting last night.

Councillor Ian Pilcher, who represents Residents4Residents, said: "I am pleased that this renewed access is now available. So all good and Ian Sherwood deserves his credit for getting a result.

"Now Councillors must follow up the progress in situ and seek goodwill with the land owner for the future.

"Credit where it's due. We are all in this together for the good of our community."

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