Friday 30 April 2010

Military Erosion

This week has seen glorious weather on the Island, perfect for sitting on the beach, for walking and for cycling. Deciding on the latter, and being the WightStay expert on all things cycling on the Isle of Wight, it was time to break away from the lunchtime routine of a 20mile training session and take a more leisurely ride of around 40 or so miles and check out the damage done to the Military Road at Compton after a collapse of the cliff in recent weeks.

There is talk that the Military Road, running along the south-western edge of the Island, may soon become two giant cul-de-sacs after a massive piece of the coastline fell into the sea,  leaving the road dangerously close to the edge of the cliff  between Compton and Brook. There is a campaign to 'save the Military Road' on facebook for anyone interested. Cliff and coastline erosion isn't unusual on the 'Milly' and the cliff at Freshwater has already had extensive support work done to keep the road open in recent years. For now, the road - after this latest collapse - has been restricted to one lane, but another fall will surely see the road go completely.

This damage (coupled with bad pothole damage after the freeze and snow of January) has already caused the cancellation of the Vectis Cycling Clubs three day Time Trialling event and will surely mean September's Triathlon will have to be re-routed. All three stages of the Vectis event use the Military road, and a single lane, no matter how short, would cause havoc. Shame really, because the 3-day really is a classic event that has been running for many years.

Before checking out the damage though, a quick chill-out on Compton beach was in order. After all, it was beach weather.

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