PROPOSALS have been published today to improve public access along a 38 mile stretch of coast between Burnham and Maldon.

The publication of Natural England’s proposals opens an eight week window for owners and occupiers of affected land and members of the public to make objections or representations that the Secretary of State must take into account when considering whether to approve the proposals.

The England Coast Path proposals follow the dramatic and wild coastline of the River Crouch, Dengie Peninsula and Blackwater Estuary exploring beyond the more familiar locations along a well-managed and waymarked trail.

In Burnham, the path will guide people past Georgian waterfront buildings and the iconic Royal Corinthian Yacht Club.

While this building speaks of late 1920s and early 1930s glamour, along the shore to the east stand the remains of darker, stormier times.

During the Second World War, authorities feared the Crouch was in the sights of enemy forces in search of an undefended passage to London. The army began to build a string of pillboxes and unique fortifications down the river and along the length of the Dengie, which walkers can still see remnants of today.

If approved, this route will become part of the England Coast Path – the 2700 mile long distance walking route and England’s newest National Trail currently being developed around the entire English coast by Natural England.

Henry Bass, Chairman of Maldon District Council, said: “Our stunning and dynamic coastline is forever changing, from undisturbed wilderness to quaint coastal towns and villages, there is plenty to explore.

“The England Coast Path will join our beautiful Saltmarsh Coast Trail to the rest of Essex and England.

“This part of our coast joins Burnham-on-Crouch, famed for its rich sailing heritage, around the Dengie Peninsular, which is an internationally significant wildlife habitat, to the historic town of Maldon.

“The River Crouch and the Blackwater Estuary are fantastic for walking, sailing and water sport enthusiasts. Visitors to the Maldon District can experience a mix of historic towns, diverse landscapes, big skies, wildlife and fantastic local food and drink.

“We hope people will enjoy their time in the Maldon District and the Saltmarsh Coast”.

Ian Grundy, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “In Essex we are fortunate enough to play host to the longest coastline of any English county. This stretch of coast that Natural England is asking for feedback on offers some truly picturesque scenery.

“It's important that everyone engages with Natural England’s consultation to allow easier access to our beautiful coastline through an England Coast Path that works for residents, businesses and visitors to the county."

All representations and objections must be received by Natural England by midnight on Wednesday September 13.

To view the proposal, visit