THE path over the Smardale Gill Viaduct near Kirkby Stephen is closed until further notice so that much-needed maintenance work can be carried out and the funds needed to do the work can be raised.

Neil Cleeveley, chair of the Northern Viaduct Trust, said: “A recent inspection by structural engineers recommended that we upgrade the railings to current standards with some urgency.

“Given the potential risk to public safety, we felt we had to act quickly.

“I hope the viaduct will not be closed for long, but we need to scope the necessary works, and raise the funds to pay for them before we can re-open it.”

The maintenance programme will also involve reparation and renewal of the viaduct footpath surface as well as repairs to the stonework. To donate visit