The local coastguard team at Lyme Regis has been involved a project that will see some 2,500 signs installed along the entire length of the 630-mile long South West Coast Path. The first 500 location signs, which help the Coastguard pinpoint exactly where an accident has taken place, have now been attached to existing waymark signs between Dawlish and Mevagissey by local volunteer Coastguard teams. A further 2,000 signs, each of which give a location name and its Ordnance Survey grid reference, are scheduled to go up over the next year; the 500th sign at Start Point, South Devon was recently installed.
Mick Cooke of the Brixham Coastguard came up with the idea and the project was been jointly sponsored by Endurancelife and the South West Coast Path Association. Mick recently said: “The sooner the Coastguard arrive at the scene of an accident, the better the likely outcome for the casualty, so these little signs could help save a life.” The South West Coast Path Association said the charity was pleased to be able to support the project. “Alongside the obvious safety benefits attached to the location signs, they are sure to be useful to walkers along the path, especially if they are unsure of which bay or headland they’ve arrived at.”
Andrew Barker of Endurancelife, which organises regular adventure challenge events along the Coast Path each year, added: “We have runners come from all over the UK and beyond, and the feedback we get is that it’s the stunning views from the path that brings them here. It’s an important part of our company’s ethos to put something back, and so in partnership with a couple of our corporate customers, RBS and Michelmore Solicitors, we are delighted to be able to support this really worthwhile project.”
The Coastguard has a long history of involvement with the Coast Path, as much of the route follows the paths created by the Coastguard in its original role as excise men, looking out for smugglers. Right up until 1913 the length of the path was regularly patrolled by the Coastguard in their constant struggle to apprehend lawbreakers. As they needed to look down into every bay and cove, the path closely hugs the coast providing excellent views but rarely the most direct path between two points. This forms the basis for the path that now gives pleasure to millions of people each year.
‘ Spot the Beauty spot’ Competition
This is one of the locations where we will be attaching a new SWCP sign, but can you work out where it is? Better still, what’s the grid reference? We offer a £10 WH Smith voucher. Entries before 15th March. Email entries to firstname.lastname@example.org or by snail mail – The Moorings, Higher Sea Lane, Charmouth, DT6 6BD.