A “New” Bridleway In Chessington

In the late 1990’s the former MOD site in Leatherhead Road was approved for redevelopment. There was a natural concern on the part of local residents to achieve a good quality scheme with the provision of some new community facilities.
One of the planning conditions was for the developer to establish a new bridleway on the western side of the residential zone. The bridleway, which runs along the boundary with Barwell Farm, was one of the final elements in the project and re-established an old pre-War right of way that was lost during the War years. It has been open for use since 2001.
A couple of years after the new bridleway was in place, trees and shrubs were planted alongside to reinforce naturally growing plants. Many trees on the general site were given preservation orders, including some alongside the bridleway. The now mature result has been to create an impressive addition to the local footpath and bridleway network in Chessington.
Regular use of this track is now made by horse riders, cyclists, walkers, runners and family groups just out for a stroll. The bridleway provides access to Winney Hill in one direction (via Barwell Lane) and Claygate in the other direction, by turning left at the northern end of the bridleway.
All directions are well signposted.
The pictures show what has turned out to be a good example of “planning gain” arising from a major building project in Chessington. Thanks are due to those who brought the bridleway into existence.

by Paul Cook

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