Another significant milestone has been reached in The Lower Otter Restoration Project. On Friday 24th November, the brand new 70 metre ‘Elizabeth Bridge’ was officially opened by on. Charles Fane Trefusis of Clinton Devon Estates and Mark Rice, Environment Agency Area Director.

As part of the project, the footbridge reconnects the South West Coast Path near Budleigh Salterton, replacing the previous embankment which was removed in order to reconnect the River Otter and its historic floodplain. The bridge’s name was suggested by a member of the public and chosen as a fitting way to commemorate the late Queen. 

The new bridge also helps to enable further accessibility for the area, with some of the first users of the bridge being disabled ramblers with mobility aids and scooters. The area is becoming increasingly accessible for a range of groups, enabling the site to be used for leisure, health and wellbeing. The Budleigh Runners, the local running club, were the first to cross and complete a circular route, thanks to the new and improved footpaths. Ramblers and young children followed them, all keen to make the most of the updated area. 

Lorna Sheriff,  SW Coast Path National Trail Officer said: “We welcome the new bridge and improvements to the walking network in the lower Otter Valley. This is a great project showing how to adapt land management, so it is better for people and wildlife. Building resilience to the impacts of climate change is a growing issue along the South West Coast Path.”

Dan Boswell, Environment Agency Project Manager said: “The project has made public rights of way and the road as well as other important local infrastructure far more resilient to rising sea levels and floods. This was demonstrated only last month with Storm Ciaran, such a storm would previously have seen the road and footpaths flood for days on end.  As it was, South Farm Road was unaffected by flooding and the footpaths were back in action the day after the storm. Today’s footbridge opening represents the final chapter in a project which seeks to enhance the experience of wildlife and people using the Lower Otter site.”

Clare James, Head of Commercial, Land and Tourism Clinton Devon Estates said: “Clinton Devon Estates are delighted that local runners and walkers are so keen to make use of the re-opened route and that the bridge name also came from a public suggestion. The bridge opening is a tangible milestone in the project that has taken over a decade to conceive, develop and deliver and it demonstrates how the LORP will deliver a sustainable environmental future for the valley, whilst maintaining vital public amenity.”

Since its beginning, the project has improved access to 3.3km of footpaths, raised 2.5k of footpaths, constructed over 600m of pavement and created 500m of new public right of way footpath. Throughout the project, 23,000 trees have been planted on the site, most of which are on the site of a former domestic tip which has been transformed into a pleasant green space. 

Things to do in Budleigh Salterton this half term

  • 3 minute read

Spending time in Budleigh Salterton this half term? Here are our suggestions of fun things to do that won’t cost the earth and will give you a chance to explore this charming seaside town. Visit the beach Budleigh beach is huge! Plus, it is mostly pebbles, so no need to worry about getting sand in…

Learn More

5 things you might not know about Budleigh Salterton

  • 2 minute read

If you’re thinking of visiting East Devon this spring, Budleigh Salterton, with its beach, charming town centre and nature reserve is a great place to set up base. Want to know more, here are some things you might not have known about Budleigh Salterton. Budleigh Salterton wasn’t always known by…

Learn More

Bibliophiles – head to Budleigh!

  • 2 minute read

Literature lovers should head to Budleigh Salterton for a taster of their famous Literary Festival with Spring Weekend taking place on 1 st and 2 nd March. This year’s Spring Weekend features the likes of Marcus du Sautoy, Simon Armitage, Hannah Barnes, Sam Peters, Sir Robin Niblett and Clive Myrie…

Learn More

What’s on this half term in East Devon

  • 3 minute read

Visiting the East Devon area this half term? Or spending time specifically in Budleigh Salterton? Here are some suggestions to keep you entertained this February half term. Days out at the beach Well first up, Budleigh Salterton Beach is a must visit for beach days. It might be a bit cold in…

Learn More

Famous faces from Budleigh Salterton

  • 3 minute read

We all know Budleigh Salterton is a charming place to spend some time, and while some of us love visiting as part of our holidays to Devon, others are lucky enough to actually live there and enjoy the sights and sounds every day. Here are some of the notable residents that have had the joy of…

Learn More

New Milestone Reached in Lower Otter Restoration Project

  • 3 minute read

Another significant milestone has been reached in The Lower Otter Restoration Project. On Friday 24th November, the brand new 70 metre ‘Elizabeth Bridge’ was officially opened by on. Charles Fane Trefusis of Clinton Devon Estates and Mark Rice, Environment Agency Area Director. As part of the…

Learn More