Ensuring cinder project is on track

COUNCILLORS have heard a summary of progress on work carried out on Scarborough’s popular Cinder Track.

The matter was discussed by members of Scarborough Council’s Cabinet and Cllr David Jeffels, the portfolio holder for tourism, said that a lot had been achieved through the project.

He added: “It’s got a great deal going for it, it’s been on the go for many years, and it’s already proved its valued through the years. It ticks all the green boxes and it’s a quality attraction for our area.”

It follows the route of a former railway line, between Scarborough and Whitby, and is popular with walkers, dog owners and cyclists.

Tom Mutton, from the Groundwork Trust, spoke to members of Scarborough Council’s Cabinet on Tuesday and asked councillors to consider an 18-month action plan for the project.

He added that work on the current phase was just coming to an end and more than 20 unemployed young people had worked on the drainage and resurfacing of the track.

“It’s about just keeping on top of what’s there, and keeping on top of the maintenance, it doesn’t need a great deal of maintenance,” he said.

The Cinder Track Action Plan outlines areas to be tackled including: surfacing and drainage; access; information, signage and facilities; vegetation and wildlife; heritage and art; as well as management.

According to organisers behind the on going project the track is a valuable resource as an green space, a recreational facility, a wildlife corridor and traffic-free transport.

It is estimated that it will cost £1,772,850 to deliver the recommendations outlined in the action plan.

In a council report by Andy Skelton, the council’s head of environmental services, he said: “Clearly it will be essential to source external funding for the majority of this work but there may be on-going maintenance costs which might require the council, where we are the landowner, to meet.

“Further progress reports will be presented as the project progresses and these will detail any such cost implications which will fall outside existing budget levels.”

His assessment of the on going revenue costs to the council could not yet be quantified and the existing budget for the Cinder Track was “!unlikely to be sufficient” if all the actions were to be delivered.

When Mr Mutton was asked where future funding would come from Mr Mutton said: “We have bids already in place.”

Cllr Derek Bastiman congratulated Mr Mutton and his team on the work that had already been carried out.

The report recommended extending and clarifying the track’s designation as a “permissive bridleway” in rural areas and a permissive footpath cycleway in town. Councillors noted the proposals contained within the report.