Gainsborough: Campaigners petition to reopen Slab Alley as they believe it is ‘part of the town’s heritage’

Campaigners are fighting to have a passageway in Gainsborough Market Place reopened to the public as they believe it is part of the town’s heritage.

Rose and Pamela collecting signatures in Marshalls Yard

Rose Kettleborough and Pamela Clark have more than 5,000 signatures on a petition to have the passageway between Nationwide and Burton and Dyson, both in Market Place, reopened as a public walk way.

The path, known as Slab Alley, has been gated off for the past five years.

Rose said: “We believe it belongs to the town.

“We don’t know why it has beebeen closed.

“People have walked it for many years. We have spoken to people who remember walking it back in the 1930’s and Pamela and I used to walk in the 1960’s,” she added.

“We think it’s part of the town’s heritage to be able to walk that passage.

“We wouldn’t mind it still being closed at night after the doctor’s surgery has shut.

“It will make it easier for families who need to be get through.”

Rose and Pamela were out in the Market Place and Marshall’s Yard inviting people to sign their petition.

Rose said: “We have around 5,000 signatures.

“It is wrong that it’s shut.

“It has been closed for five years and I have been fighting for four years to have it reopened.

“Rubbish is being pushed through and no one cleans it so it has become a bit of a dumping round.

“It being closed also affects businesses around it,” Rose added

“There are lots of reasons why it shouldn’t be shut.

“We have had a fantastic response.

“It’s a right of way.”

If the passageway was to be reopened it would also be a route for patients picking up prescriptions from Boots after visiting the doctors.

Pamela said: “Elderly people want to be able to cut through to the doctors and then get their prescriptions from Boots.”

West Lindsey District Council were unable to comment on the access as it is their belief it is privately owened by the solicitors, Burton and Dyson.

Burton and Dyson were unavailable to comment before the Standard went to press.

Chris Miller, countryside access and definitive map manager at Lincs County Council, said: “This alleyway isn’t a recorded public right of way and because of this the county council hasn’t any remit to require the removal of any barriers.

“Members of the public have been advised that there is a process for claiming such routes as a right of way and the county has received an application to have the alley recorded as a public footpath, however because we have a backlog of several hundred similar applications the case will unfortunately have to take its turn.

“If at the end of that process, the route is found to be a right of way then the county council will of course ensure it is freely available for use.”