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Cyclist asks for Rutland Water paths closed by coronavirus to be reopened between Manton and Egleton

A cyclist who once used paths around Rutland Water to commute to Oakham is appealing for some to be reopened.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson began to relax some of the coronavirus lockdown conditions on Sunday, allowing individuals to travel to take exercise out of doors.

Barbara Spalek, 49, a mental health worker from Morcott had hoped this would mean Anglian Water might relax its complete closure of Rutland Water.

Barbara Spalek from Morcott (34640516)
Barbara Spalek from Morcott (34640516)

She would like the stretch along the west shore, between Manton and Egleton, to be reopened to people walking and cycling, a route she’s cycled for the past six years.

This would mean cyclists can avoid having to join the A6003 main road between Uppingham and Oakham.

“I cycle to Oakham and back two or three times a week rather than using the car,” said Barbara. “With the paths shut I’ve tried cycling a few times along the road. Never again. It felt too dangerous.

“I was hoping the stretch between Manton and Egleton would reopen, because it’s not near a car park and I’ve never seen hoards of people on it. They could have it open during the week and not at weekends.”

However, Barbara’s plea, which she has also made to Rutland MP Alicia Kearns, may not answered positively until there is greater relaxation of lockdown.

Anglian Water spokesman Regan Harris said: “Everything around Rutland Water is closed because it’s permissive footpaths and not county-owned ones. This makes it difficult for our staff to police things like paths being used on an ad hoc basis.

“We review the guidance from the government as it continues to come out but at the moment keeping everything closed is the most responsible thing to do for our staff.”

She added that Anglian Water was keen to reopen Rutland Water, but couldn’t say when.

What do you think? Should some paths are Rutland Water be re-opened to allow people to travel? E-mail your letters or views to suzanne.moon@iliffepublishing.co.uk

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