Saving history brick by brick
The viaduct is a listed structure and a National Trail (Hadrian’s Wall path) passes under its Southernmost brick ‘skewed’ arch, built on a banked curve. It is a fine example of Victorian engineering. Originally the campaign’s object was just to re-open the viaduct as a footway between the north and south banks of the river. We have received enthusiastic encouragement from various bodies and now regard the viaduct as a vital link in the City’s proposed foot and cycle network
Our Initial Objective:
On Friday 27 April 2018 we finally got our latest plans passed by the Carlisle City Planning Committee to achieve our initial objective of opening a footpath, with stairs at the northern end of the viaduct as shown in the image above.
This footpath will link Hadrians Wall path on the south bank with the existing public footpath on the north bank.
Our original objective of creating a cycle way with disabled access across the viaduct linking Etterby with Newtown and the Cumberland Infirmary through Engine Lonning will follow later. This is because the Environment Agency have not yet completed their flood protection plans for the area and cannot give permission for a cycle path yet. However they do not oppose us going ahead with the current plans and will keep in mind, when carrying out their flood protection work, that eventually we will need a 1 in 20 graded route off the viaduct for the cycle route as shown on our original planning application.
What must we do now?
We need to raise up to £10,000 now so that the City Council can proceed in the next few weeks with a Public Path Creation Order (PPCO) for a very small strip of land (needed for the stairs) as the owner, refuses permission for his land to be used.
He opposes the re-opening of the viaduct and that is the reason for the fact we have had to fight so hard to get this far.
The money is need if he continues to object and a public inquiry is necessary. We already have a promise of £100,000 from the Railway Heritage Trust which we will only get if we have contractors signed up by the end of March 2019. We intend to raise as much of the remaining £225,000 as possible from funding agencies but we cannot do this if we do not have access.
Why this means so much
One of the main benefits of this project will be to make the Engine Lonning Nature much more accessible to the public with new paths on both sides of the river and in turn make the Kingmoor Nature Reserve accessible to the community on the south of the city.
We as a charity are hugely grateful to each and every one of our supporters and have created this crowd-funding page to encourage your support. We do need continuing public support to successfully restore this iconic viaduct, a major asset denied to locals and visitors for far too long. So whether you are planning to hold a coffee morning, a fun run, wacky tie day or even something as daring as a skydive (!) You can become involved in this community project and have a lot of fun to raise awareness and support for it. Please let us know of any fundraising ideas you have.