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October 2, 2013 4:17 PM

Andrew Stunell, MP for Hazel Grove, joined the Ramblers for the launch of a new report highlighting the many benefits of an England Coast Path and backed the Ramblers call to Government to complete the coast path for the nation.

Commenting, Andrew said -

"I share the Ramblers enthusiasm to see the England Coast Path fully open as soon as possible. The people of Britain have a right to enjoy the wonderful coastline our country has to offer and all the benefits access to our seaside will bring, and it's not cost, it's will-power that's the problem."

The Case for Coast was launched from an ice-cream van - a much loved seaside icon - outside Westminster, where Ramblers CEO Benedict Southworth handed out copies and appealed to MPs to support their One Coast for All campaign.

The 3000 mile path around England was supposed to be completed by 2019, but so far only one 20 mile stretch has opened. Next spring sees the opening of a further two sections but beyond that, the future of the remaining 2,900 miles of coast path remains uncertain. Andrew is pushing Defra to speed up progress, and is supporting The Ramblers' call for the government to make completing the England Coast Path a priority.

Ramblers Chief Executive Benedict Southworth said:

"We're concerned that government doesn't recognise the true value of the England Coast Path. So we brought the coast to them. Our report details all of the many benefits that a complete coast path will bring - for tourism, for health, for the economy and for the nation. It also captures the local and national enthusiasm for this project from everyone who loves spending time outdoors."

"Over a third of our coastline is out of bounds, yet for a small investment in time, money and enthusiasm for our coastal communities, the government can give this gift of the England Coast Path to the nation, and ensure future generations can be connected with their stretch of coast."

Download a full copy of the Case for Coast report and sign the Ramblers petition for a complete coast path at www.ramblers.org.uk/OneCoastForAll.