UPWELL AND OUTWELL: Railings row set to continue but in the meantime they need repairing
A LONG-running debate over who should be responsible for maintaining riverside railings through two villages looks set to continue. Residents of Upwell and Outwell and their parish councillors are keen to keep the railings which have fallen into disrepair
A LONG-running debate over who should be responsible for maintaining riverside railings through two villages looks set to continue.
Residents of Upwell and Outwell and their parish councillors are keen to keep the railings which have fallen into disrepair.
They believe Norfolk County Council should maintain the railings which run alongside the Welle Creek but the council has denied responsibility and has suggested they be removed.
The railings were erected in the 1950s by the former Isle of Ely County Council but boundary changes in 1990 transferred the Cambridgeshire part of Upwell into Norfolk.
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Assistant clerk to Upwell Parish Council, Kate Bennett, said: "Because they have been repaired by highways in the past, the parish council is concerned if it repairs them and something happens it would be liable.
"Upwell Parish Council is extremely keen to keep the railings and does not agree with the county council suggestion of removing them because they do not think they serve any safety purpose. They do make people feel safer."
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The county council admits it did carry out some repairs in 2000 but only as a goodwill gesture. It has asked for documentary evidence that it took over maintenance following the boundary changes.
Ms Bennett said: "It is quite a sensitive issue we are reluctant to maintain them because of the liability issue so we are looking at persuading the county council to do it."
Parish council chairman Neil Morgan said: "When Norfolk took over the responsibility should have passed to them but they are refuting this. Taking them down would leave the entire Welle Creek open to vehicles running into the water.
"We as a council would love to have this work done. We would be prepared to look at repairing it ourselves but have been warned that the insurance issue could be a problem.