THE future of the Lydbrook's Black Bridge is a step closer to being secured.

There has been a campaign to have the bridge, which connects Lower Lydbrook to Welsh Bicknor,  registered after a bureaucratic blunder was discovered years ago.

The Gloucestershire half of the former railway bridge was never registered as a public right of way.

And this oversight only came to light when Gloucestershire County Council agreed to temporary repairs to reopen the bridge after a lottery grant bid for more permanent repairs was rejected in 2018.

The council did not register it on the definitive map after the footpath was established in 1981. 

While the bridge has been open, many residents feared the lack of legal protection put the route at risk of closure and campaigners have been calling on the council to register the route on the definitive map

Now a notice of public path creation and definitive map and statement modification order has been issued by the county council.

Gloucestershire county councillor Terry Hale (Con, Drybrook and Lydbrook) who has also been campaigning to save the bridge said he was pleased with the progress so far.

He said: “We got it done in the end. 

“It was one of my manifesto pledges and I’m glad it’s done. 

“It was an essential job that needed doing.”