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By Hugh Boag
There are fears a section of the popular Fisherman’s Walk could be completely lost to the sea unless urgent action is taken.
Part of the path between Brodick and Cladadh is already underwater at high tide making getting through tricky but with a swathe of path already washed away it is only a matter of time before the sea reclaims the whole area.
The coastal walk is widely used by locals and visitors alike and there have been significant improvements in recent years in particular the boardwalk, recently extended, which was introduced after erosion at the mouth of the Glencloy Water.
The path is also part of the Arran Coastal Way and its loss would be a severe blow to round Arran walkers.
The seriousness of the situation was highlighted by chairman Bill Calderwood and the last meeting of Arran Community Council held using video conference technology who reported that there was a ‘major issue with erosion’ with deterioration of the situation by the day.
‘We are almost at a point where we will lose a section of the coastal way,’ he said.
North Ayrshire Council who maintain the path, but are not the land owners, are aware of the situation and a marine licence is already in effect which would allow groynes and other rock armour which would help slow in ingress of the water.
However, they say a new licence may be required and that work may not be able to start until next year. But with winter approaching, when the shore takes its biggest battering, that may be too late.
There is also concern of other sections of the walk particularly the foundations of the bridge over Glencloy Water which have already been shored up and are showing signs of further deterioration.
Earlier this month the Banner told how 2,000 tonnes of rock armour was being shipped from the mainland to shore up the seawall at Pirnmill on the west side of the island.
Bill added: ‘Delays caused during lockdown are beginning to catch up with us.’
A North Ayrshire Council officials visited the site on Monday. A spokesman said: ‘We have been investigating the extent of the erosion this week to assess the level of repairs required.
‘It is likely that a new project specific licence will be required to allow the works to proceed, which together with ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, is likely to delay any further work until early 2021.’
The section of the path where the sea has completed breached through. 01_B33erode01
The path across this section of shore has all but disappeared. 01_B33erode02
A sign asking people to stay off the repair work. 01_B33erode03
There is concern over the foundations of the Glenrosa Water bridge. 01_B33erode04
Even a week later further erosion is plain to see. 01_B33erode05