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Access to riverside

Milan, Italy
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Access to riverside

Hello,

may someone please advise whether it is possible to access the riverside footpath from South Bailey/Prebends bridge?

After my visit to the Cathedral and castle I would like to walk along the footpath on the opposite side of the river in order to get views (and photo opportunities) of the Cathedral and the Old Fulling Mill.

Looking at a map I thought I could do it walking down South Bailey, crossing the bridge and accessing the footpath from there, but after a double check with Google Streetview I'm uncertain whether this may be possible as it looks like there is a bar and I'm now unsure whether access to Prebends bridge and the footpath is allowed from there.

Thanks

London, United...
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1. Re: Access to riverside

You could certainly walk along the riverside from Prebends when I was a student in Durham a few years ago. There's a few uni boathouses along the way and you get a spectacular view of the castle and cathedral from down there. In fact I'm looking at a poster on my wall right now taken from the riverside, stunning view :-)

Milan, Italy
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2. Re: Access to riverside

Thanks for your answer, fleur.

I hope a local or someone with recent experience confirms it is still the case today, as the image of that barrier seen on Streetview leaves me a bit doubtful; additionally it appears there is a sign on the gate stating 'private road' - I hope the restriction only applies to vehicles, still granting the right to pass to walkers.

Durham, United...
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3. Re: Access to riverside

Yes, you can access Prebends Bridge from South Bailey on foot. There is a barrier at the end of South Bailey but it is only there to stop vehicles passing - you can walk round the side. The bridge is normally closed to traffic but the barrier occasionally needs to be opened to allow traffic to cross the bridge at times when there are road works preventing vehicular access to the other end of the Bailey.

Prebends Bridge is covered by scaffolding at present while a structural survey is carried out. The bridge was closed to pedestrians for a 2 week period earlier this year while the scaffolding was erected and I understand there will be a similar 2 week closure while it is dismantled. Pedestrians can still walk across the bridge at the moment but the plan was that the survey would take 14 weeks to complete, which I think would take us up to about June. I don't know exact dates so if you are unlucky your visit could coincide with the closure. If so you should still be able to walk back along the nearside riverbank and cross Framwellgate Bridge and double back along the other side to get to the viewpoint for the Fulling Mill.

If you want to avoid walking along South Bailey there are also alternative pedestrian exits from the rear of the Cathedral leading to the riverside path.

Milan, Italy
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4. Re: Access to riverside

Thanks again, Colin!

I'm being rather unlucky with the organization of my trip, this time around, so I bet my visit (16th June) WILL coincide with the closure of Prebends Bridge. :-(

Thanks also for suggesting an alternative route in case of closure.

On more question, though: is there any particular reason (traffic, steepness, ...?) why I would want to avoid walking along South Bailey and take the pedestrian path at the rear of the Cathedral, instead? I thought there would be nice/historic buildings to look at along the Bailey - maybe the view is better along the footpath?

Durham, United...
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5. Re: Access to riverside

No, it's a lovely walk along South Bailey - very tranquil and with historic buildings to see. I just thought you might be disappointed if the bridge was closed. It would be nice to do both walks if you have time, but I think your original plan is the best idea. Hopefully the bridge will be open.

Milan, Italy
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6. Re: Access to riverside

OK, thanks.

I do hope too to have time to explore some of the side streets - after all the historic core of Durham, around the Cathedral, doesn't look too big from maps, so hopefully I'll do both.

Thanks again, I'm really excited about visiting your city next month!

Essex
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7. Re: Access to riverside

When I was there, you could access the riverside from the Elvet Bridge, then walk all around the riverside (under the Prebend Bridge) to the Silver Street Bridge. So even if the Prebend Bridge is closed at 'your' time, all is not lost!!

Milan, Italy
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8. Re: Access to riverside

Nice one, EssexWanderer!

Just to be sure: would I be able to access the riverside walk after crossing Elvet Bridge? My goal is to be on the footpath across the river from the Cathedral, in order to get front views.

Essex
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9. Re: Access to riverside

Er well, depends which direction you cross 'which' bridge in, as to which riverbank you will end up on!!

Looking at your OP, I would say cross the Silver Street bridge and walk along from there. It does not take that long to walk around the river 'loop' to the Elvet Bridge anyway.

Here is a link to an interactive map of Durham though, perhaps that will help you with your decisions!

http://www.dur.ac.uk/map/

Milan, Italy
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10. Re: Access to riverside

Hello again!

With reference to post #3, any news on whether Prebends Bridge is going to be closed to pedestrians in this period in order to allow for the removal of scaffolding?

I'm visiting on next Thursday!

Thanks

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