Survey planned on turning Dales railway line into bridleway

Appersett Viaductm, part of the Hawes to Garsdale line. Photo: YDNPA

A consultation is planned on turning a former railway line into a family friendly.

Members of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority today approved the principle of creating a multi-user route between Hawes and Garsdale Station and asked that a survey be carried out to determine the level of public support for it.

The survey will be available until Friday 22 April, with the findings made public in the summer.

The issue will then come back to a meeting of the national park authority for further consideration.

Neil Heseltine, chair of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, said: “It’s important the public now have their say, and we have launched an online survey to collect those views.

“We have the chance to provide a safe user-friendly environment for local people and visitors to experience cycling and horse riding away from a busy, dangerous road network, and to develop Upper Wensleydale as a cycle hub by bringing this major capital investment to the area.

“The question isn’t whether we can develop this family friendly route or reinstate the railway – sadly, little progress has been made on the latter over 40 years.

“The question is whether we should take the opportunity to develop an accessible bridleway or continue to protect the line of the former railway in the hope that, at some future date, someone will have the means to develop a line between Hawes and Garsdale”.

The report discussed at today’s National Park Authority meeting is here, the feasibility study is here, and the survey is available here until Friday 22 April 2022.