Friday, 12 February 2016

Duke of Northumbeland Riverside walk returns to life

A picturesque stretch of the Duke of Northumberland River in Whitton which was once inaccessible to most is now open to all, thanks to the Mayor of London, Richmond Council, and partner organisations.
Hidden wildlife habitats and beautiful riverside scenes from Kneller Gardens Park to Langhorn Drive in Crane Valley, Whitton, can be part of the school run and visits, now that a new pathway has been installed along the river. The work is part of a wider £400,000 project to transform the entire pathway with runs four kilometres from where it leaves the River Crane in Kneller Gardens to its confluence with the River Thames in Old Isleworth. Previously the pathway was a narrow muddy walkway which was difficult for many people to use. 
It has been made possible thanks to a generous donation of £157k from the Mayor of London’s ‘Big Green Fund’, plus contributions from Richmond Council, Hounslow Council, SITA Trust and ZSL London Zoo.
The project was originally shortlisted for funding from the Mayor’s Big Green Fund in January last year. Londoners voted online and the Duke of Northumberland River scheme was a winner along with just six other London-wide projects. New trees, shrubs, and wild plants will now be planted along the stretch of pathway which has been widened.       
Richmond Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Pamela Fleming, said: 
“The Crane Valley is a local treasure and we are delighted by the work that has gone on there. There is so much for visitors to enjoy and natural habitats to explore. The work has opened up this stretch of river to all which I’m sure will be well used and much loved.”
Rob Gray, Chair of Friends of the River Crane Environment (FORCE), added:
“We are very pleased to see this great improvement to the pathway in this section of the Duke’s River and we look forward to more improvements along the length of the river as the project continues over the next 12 months.  We encourage local people to go out and explore this lovely environmental asset.”