Landslide-hit river path finally ready to re-open

Neil Russmann, manager of Tesco Extra at Central Park, on the newly-rebuilt and reopened pathway alongside the River Douglas
Neil Russmann, manager of Tesco Extra at Central Park, on the newly-rebuilt and reopened pathway alongside the River Douglas
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A WIGAN walkway has finally re-opened after its dramatic collapse in a landslide.

The path running along the River Douglas next to Wigan’s Tesco Extra has taken 18 months to rebuild.

Now shoppers once again have a quick and safe access to the store and also to the town centre. Store manager Neil Russmann said the pathway, which had been damaged by river erosion, had now been completely repaired. This comes after the store lift taking customers from the riverbank to the car park was re-instated several months ago.

He said: “It’s great news for residents and anybody wanting to use the accessible amenity. I am so pleased that it has finally been reopened for anybody going from the store to the town centre and the surrounding areas.

“It is a vast improvement from the previous walkway. It is now an acceptable amenity, it looks a lot better and is much safer. The remedial works have been welcomed by shoppers, many of whom enjoy walking along the riverbank pathway which is also, bicycle, pushchair and disabled access-friendly.

“We are very grateful for their understanding and the fact they have stuck by us. We tried to keep the interference and nuisance factors to an absolute minimum particularly over the busy Christmas and New Year periods.”

The work took so long because of an initially disputed land ownership issue and the need for equipment and procedures to avoid harming wildlife.

The work, for instance, took into account the ecological cycle of plants and animals.

Mr Russmann paid tribute to the Environment Agency and to the site operations contractors team from Lumsden and Carroll and said it had been a real partnership in action for the benefit of the whole town community. He added: “We are delighted with the work now it has reached completion. Further landscaping and planting will take place along the pathway later this year.