To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
(1) on which parts of the River Wear voluntary access agreements have been reached on (a) both river banks and (b) a single river bank;
(2) what assessment he has made of the impact of voluntary access agreements covering only a single river bank on providing effective access to the River Wear.
On the River Wear, 9 km of access, from Houghall to the Sands, has been negotiated through the voluntary access project managed by the Environment Agency. All of this has the agreement of landowners on both banks.
The voluntary access project delivered over 70 km of access on four rivers. Of this, only 200 m on the River Mersey is with one river bank owner. There is no evidence to suggest that single bank access is likely to be a feature of many agreements and no assessment of the impact of such access has been made.