Efforts to construct a footbridge across the River Wharfe at Burley date back at least to 1898 when the former Burley Urban District Council minutes record on November 1st "That the Wharfedale RDC be asked if they will take steps along with Burley UDC to get a footbridge over the River Wharfe at Greenholme, seeing that accidents have already occurred, one lately proving fatal".
A powerful precedent has already been established for a bridge over the River Wharfe at Greenholme Farm near Burley-in-Wharfedale on the boundary between Bradford MDC and the county of North Yorkshire.
This precedent was established when in 1999 both local authorities approved a planning application submitted by the Burley Bridge Association for a footbridge crossing the top of the weir.
This planning permission was renewed in 2004.
The implementation of this planning approval has not been proceeded with because of difficulties in obtaining footpath creation orders needed to link the bridge to the adjacent rights of way network.
FOLLOWING the Olympic Games, a Burley Bridge supporter had these thoughts:
Our Olympic Valley is missing a link . . .
Did you know that the Wharfe Valley netted the same number of Olympic medals as the whole of the country of Tunisia, which came 45th in the medals table? It's a staggering achievement for our county, and a great credit to the talent and dedication of Lizzie Armitstead, Alistair and Jonny Brownlee. If word gets out, people might be prompted to ask if there's something in the water around here?
Well, it's certainly true that the Wharfe Valley has provided a natural training ground. Country lanes, green fields, open country, woodland and plenty of footpaths must certainly have been helpful for our Olympians to have on their doorstep.
But there's a missing link in our Valley.
There is a group of determined volunteers seeking to raise funds for a bridge at Burley-in-Wharfedale. If this could be achieved, it would open up the possibility of many circular walks that would criss-cross this beautiful part of the Wharfe Valley.
Then who knows, perhaps some future Olympic athletes might benefit from improved links across this Olympic Valley!