We are very lucky to have in Gerald Gresham Cooke someone who tirelessly walks our footpaths for us, and ensures that they remain the jewel of the parish that they are so that we can all enjoy them all of the time. Here is his 2023 report….
TILLINGTON PARISH PATH INSPECTION–AUGUST 2023
Every fifteen months, I inspect our Tillington Footpaths – 16.2 miles (28Km) of them – for the West Sussex County Council (WSCC).
Our footpaths are in very good order, thanks in part to WSCC and to those walkers reporting problems. Side vegetation has been a problem this year with the high rainfall and strong sun.
There are no stiles, unusually in the countryside, so most people can enjoy a trouble free walk. We are also fortunate to have over a mile of disabled access paths, suitable for wheelchairs, around Pitshill House.
An inspection involves sorting the problems into categories of High, Medium & Low depending on their severity.
The number of problem categories this year was:-
Highs – 8; Mediums 1; Lows – 1.
All except one of these ‘Highs’ concerned the crossing of the water meadows at the bottom of South Dean Lane. The path runs parallel to the river towards the bottom of Grittenham Farm and onto the Lod Bridge boundary near the Halfway Inn. In 2022, the WSCC re-laid the duck boards and provided handrails. Inevitably, on such an unstable surface so close to the river, and after heavy rainfall, the path has become nearly unusable.
This is sad as the path is in deep, deep countryside with the only noise being birds and the occasional cow’s moo-ing, with, in early Summer, the cuckoo. If you intend to walk it, I recommend going during a dry period.
On a good note, the low number of other problems is due to the Leconfield Estate and other Landowners cooperating very willingly in keeping their paths free from fallen branches and side vegetation.
Also, I am grateful to those of you who report to me different problems throughout the year which I can then attend to.
Please continue to keep me posted about problems.
Gerald, Footpath Warden, 01798 342151.