CONCERNS that a bridleway on the edge of Canaston Woods could be tarmac-ed, allowing cyclists to reach speeds which could have endangered other users, have been refuted by the county council.

Works are currently starting to surface part of the existing bridleway from Eagle Lodge on the A4075 to Blackpool Mill.

Concerns have been raised by equestrian groups that the entire route would be tarmacked.

In a posting on Facebook, signed by the British Horse Society and Pembrokeshire Bridleway & Byways Association “The BHS & PBBA has discussed this with PCC and suggested the following.

"A separate track to one side in a suitable material (fibre deck) is used. Leaving the main track in its present natural state which is in good condition.

“It now appears that what we thought was going to be done has been totally ignored. They are going to tarmac the entire width so that road bikes can reach speeds endangering the main users of a bridleway – horse riders; also walkers and disabled users will also be at risk.”

A spokesman for Pembrokeshire County Council said: “It is not our intention to ‘tarmac the entire width of the bridleway’.

“After much deliberation, we have decided to replace the existing stoned track surface with a surface material very similar to fibre-dec but strengthened to withstand occasional use from forestry vehicles.

“Fibre-dec is suitable for equestrian activity and as such has been successfully used on other routes in the county in previous years.

“The consolidated stone sub-base will be surface dressed with two layers of tar and small stone thereby giving the appearance of a stoned track but providing a relatively smooth surface suitable for all users, including users with limited mobility, but still providing sufficient grip for horses.

“The ground conditions to the sides of the bridleway will remain unchanged, providing a softer surface for those users who wish to walk/ride on a natural surface.

This phase of the project will also include improvements to the crossing point between the new car/equestrian parking area and Eagle Lodge to improve the safety of all users as they cross the A4075 carriageway.

“Once again we have considered the needs of equestrian users in the design of the crossing point.

“On completion of this first phase, our attention will then turn to completing the remainder of the 16-kilometre link between Narberth and Haverfordwest if, and when, funding becomes available.”