Hipper Valley Trail: Walton Dam and Somersall Park Poor Surface

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Added by Nicola Peck

This well-used trail is in desperate need of resurfacing. During spells of wet weather, it has large puddles at regular intervals and there is a particularly huge "mud bath" at the western end of Walton Dam just by the entrance to the woods. Currently (July 2014) the mud bath is reasonably, but not completely, dry but as recently as June it has been very muddy and was terrible over winter.

This is one of Chesterfield's major cycling routes and these conditions make it unreasonable to use it for transport journeys (ie. commuting and shopping) in normal clothes because the bike gets caked in mud and it splashes over your shoes and trousers, even with mudguards.

Alongside Walton Dam, I believe this path is supposed to be nominally 3 metres wide but vegetation has grown into the gravel surface making it significantly narrower (single file) in places.

The sloped tarmac section at the Walton Road end is suffering encroachment from overgrown vegetation and there is an unnecessary pinch-point part way down (a row of wooden posts) which could be opened up with perhaps only a single post if really necessary, or ideally none at all.

In Somersall Park, immediately to the south of the river bridge, there is a particularly rough patch of surface which, ironically, is the most recently resurfaced section of path. It's so incredibly rough that you have to be extra careful and slow if carrying delicate items like a laptop or fragile shopping (eg. soft fruit or eggs).

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