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Rainham projects: Marsh Public Access by Peter Beard_Landroom

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New public paths have opened up the marshes to a wide range of users, including cyclists, walkers and those with limited mobility

Some of the new paths have a conventional asphalt finish while some less formal paths are made from crushed stone, which is allowed to grow over with vegetation. New signage assists with orientation.

Some of the new interventions echo historical patterns and forms within the landscape; in places the alignments of former military tracks have been reused. Elsewhere new alignments and figures have been imposed on the existing landscape. These new elements include earth-banks, reedbeds, bridges and boardwalks. The new Trackway bridge reestablishes the historic link between the marshes and Rainham village.

Better strategic water management has been made possible through the creation of watercourses and wetland areas. The site’s conservation status prohibits the use of any imported plant material, so new habitat areas are created by a combination of ground reprofiling and control of water levels. Local vegetation is then allowed to recolonise these
areas naturally.

Farm management infrastructure has been created to support the return of grazing cattle to the site. Reclaimed concrete and locally sourced timber have been used extensively in the construction of new infrastructural elements.

Peter Beard, founder, Peter Beard_Landroom

Project data

Date commenced  2003
Date completed  2014 (ongoing)
Cost £4.3 million
Location Rainham Marshes


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