Fears over access to River Great Ouse at Ely allayed amid duck gate plans

How the enclosed slipway at Ely could look

How the enclosed slipway at Ely could look - Credit: Archant

FEARS that public access to the River Great Ouse in Ely could be blocked under plans to ban ducks from coming onto land have been allayed.

Last week, the Ely Standard revealed details of how East Cambridgeshire District Council planned to fence off an area around the slipway at Waterside in Ely in a bid to stop wildfowl from coming onto the land and fouling the pavements.

But the plans sparked an immediate response from Waterside resident George Peacock.

In consultation with the council, he said: “I am particularly interested to know what legal advice your legal department has given. In particular, do you accept that the slipway is a highway and, if so, what legal powers does the council have available to it to erect an obstruction across the right of way?”

The council, in response, said: “Our legal section has raised the issue of public right of way on the slipway with the Highways Department and has been advised that there are no public rights of way registered with their department for the slipway.

“However, we have been made aware of the public right of way along the front of the river, which leads to the steps onto the slipway. Public access will not be prevented from the steps as the gate will not be locked.”

To have your say on the plans, visit www.eastcambs,gov.uk