Boulders from Norway, as used on nearby Hurst Spit in the 1990s, are piled above Paddy’s Gap ready for laying below the crumbling cliff.
Diversion: Bear half left to join the parallel road just before The Beach House. Walk past the pub (right) and continue to St Francis Church (right). Go right along Westover Road. After passing The White House entrance gates (right) bear right at a car park to reach the promenade.
As urgent restoration work begins on the Westover sea wall at the western approach to Milford-on-Sea there is a long term diversion now in place.
New Forest District Council says that “no date can be given at this time for when the footpath may be opened up” as the land is unstable but adds that “ideally the urgent works will enable the footpath to be opened again”.
Walkers will encounter a works compound at Paddy’s Gap before seeing the main repair compound, with just arrived Norwegian stone, ahead by The White House. Bear half left to join the parallel road just before The Beach House pub.
Walk past the pub (right) and continue to St Francis Church. Here go right along Westover Road.
There is soon a view of The White House (right) which is under threat from the crumbling coast.
It is possible to rejoin the coast path by a bowling green and the Needles Eye Cafe.
**The Westover sea wall owes its name to The Beach House which is the former Westover built in 1897 for electricity pioneer Alexander Siemans.
A report on the poor state of coastal sea defences at the eastern end of Christchurch Bay cliff is being considered by New Forest District Council.
The NFDC commissioned Jacobs Report warns of “a significant cliff retreat” if extreme weather hits the coast during the coming winter.
The Milford-on-Sea clifftop subject to urgent discussion between NFDC, Milford Council and residents is the few but crucial hundred yards which runs from approximately just below The Beach House pub to The White House.
The path, diverted earlier this year, should run downhill to pass in front of The White House which was built in 1903 to a design by Romaine Walker.
In 1938 the landmark white building became a children’s hospital. It is now divided into residences.
The Church of England calendar entry for today 14 July is John Keble, Priest, Tractarian, Poet, 1866 [Lesser Festival].
Keble’s death in March 1866 came at Brookside opposite the pier in Bournemouth where he had been staying for six months having come for his wife’s health.
Brookside is now part of the Hermitage Hotel. The name Book-side indicates the position of the boarding house being close to the Bourne Stream about to flow across the sand next to the pier. John Keble crossed this stream in the ‘chine’ daily on his way to St Peter’s Church.
“We do not at all repent of having come here,” was his verdict on the town in January.
At the house he corresponded with John Henry Newman, who now also appears in the ecclesiastical calendar, and William Gladstone who was at the time Chancellor of the Exchequer.
Keble had a huge influence on the direction and nature of Church life during the Victorian era with his sermons, hymns and best seller poetry book The Christian Year. As a result his death was widely reported.
This year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the opening of Keble College Oxford which was his national memorial. But for the virus there would have been a programme of celebrations featuring the great church figures of today including Rowan William and Richard Coles.
But it is good to know that John Keble’s last home survives as a place to stay with a view of the sea thanks to the Hermitage Hotel.
Medieval music expert Dr Mary Remnant died last week at the age of 85.
Editor of The Tablet Brendan Walsh writes in this week’s issue: “Her mother was a music teacher and her father was an art historian and architect who designed Benedictine abbeys and chapels in France. Mary grew up surrounded by medieval bric-a-brac…”
Her father was Eustace A. Remnant who wrote an important study The Abbey of Jumieges and Highcliffe Castle long before there was much interest in the link.
In 1955 the British Archaeological Association awarded him the Reginald Taylor Prize Medal for his essay on The Problem of the Cloister of Jumieges which looks at the association with Highcliffe.
Pieces from the monastery include cloister bosses found at the castle’s grand entrance.