A PUBLIC footpath in Marshfield, Newport, which took walkers over high speed rail tracks has been diverted and made safer.

The footpath in Marshfield has been extended and now makes use of a nearby bridge to create a less risky route for walkers.

Network Rail had run a national campaign to highlight the dangers of level crossings across the nation's rail network – in 2018/19 the firm said there were 308 near-misses with non-vehicle users on the UK's level crossings.

In addition, there were three incidents last year of trains striking pedestrians at level crossings, two of which were fatal.

Working alongside Newport City Council and local landowners, Network Rail created the alternative route and, following extensive work, the footpath is open to the public.

Peter Caulfield, project manager for Network Rail, said: “We are delighted that we have improved safety for pedestrians by diverting this public right of way in Marshfield.

“The number of pedestrian level crossing incidents is at an all-time high and it is our duty to reduce these numbers and preserve the safety of workers, the public, passengers and lineside neighbours.”


Newport councillor and cabinet member for city services, Roger Jeavons, added: “This project means the public do not have to risk the dangers associated with crossing a high-speed rail line.

“I would like to thank everyone involved in bringing this project to such a successful conclusion.”

The footpath now heads from Whitethorn Way, heading south along an enclosed countryside track before crossing the railway line over the newly upgraded bridge.

The path then continues towards the coast joining Wentloog Road, giving walkers more opportunities to join the Wales Coastal Path.