Rangers at work on the route near Ravenseat Farm. Photo: Yorkshire Dales NPA

Rangers at work on the route near Ravenseat Farm. Photo: Yorkshire Dales NPA

National park rangers and volunteers are working on improving a section of the Coast to Coast Walk through the Yorkshire Dales.

A boggy stretch of the route in upper Swaledale is being flagged using reclaimed stone.

The national park authority says it is also campaigning for the route to be granted national trail status.

The 309km (192-mile) walk was devised by the late guidebook author Alfred Wainwright and runs from St Bees Head in Cumbria to Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire, passing through three national parks.

The team of five from the Yorkshire Dales authority are laying 175m of new path near Ravenseat Farm in Whitsundale, between Nine Standards Rigg and the village of Keld. Work started earlier this month and is expected to be complete by the end of this week.

The workers are using low-ground-pressure tracked dumpers and excavators in the construction of the flagged section, bringing in traditional stone slabs from West Yorkshire and Lancashire.

Access rangers Paul Sheehan and Roger Foreman lay flags at the site. Photo: Yorkshire Dales NPA

Access rangers Paul Sheehan and Roger Foreman lay flags at the site. Photo: Yorkshire Dales NPA

Director of park services Kathryn Beardmore said: “The Coast to Coast path brings many thousands of people into the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

“Quite a number of accommodation providers rely on its enduring popularity. We’re pleased to be able to help keep the path well maintained. Boggy sections, where people can often stray off the path and create erosion, can be much improved by flagging – although flagging is reserved for only the wettest sections, as we want the path to remain as simple and as lightly engineered as possible.”

The work is taking place close to the home of the Yorkshire Shepherdess Amanda Owen, who, as well as running her farm, is a writer, photographer and regularly appears on television and in other media.

It lies south-east of another notorious part of the walk across the bog of Nine Standards Rigg, across which a flagged path was installed two years ago.

The route from the Irish Sea to the North Sea was first detailed by Wainwright in his 1973 book A Coast to Coast Walk. Although traversed by thousands of walkers each year, the route is not a designated national trail, of which there are 15 in England and Wales currently. In England, the government advisory body Natural England contributes to the paths’ maintenance. When complete, the England Coast Path will also have national trail status.

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