A BRIDGE for walkers, cyclists and horseriders is to be unveiled at Burnley's newest parks.

The £81,000 bridge linking Netherwood Road with the Brun Valley Forest Park has been completed and will be officially opened on Saturday.

The bridge, over the River Brun, opens up a new route that passes through woodlands and meadows on the south side of the river.

It was funded by Burnley Council and Lancashire County Council (LCC) with grants from the Lancashire Environment Fund, River Ribble Trust and the Forestry Commission.

Coun Foster, Burnley Council’s executive member for leisure and culture, said: “This new bridge, extends the network of routes we are developing in Brun Valley Forest Park.

“I am pleased we are already seeing a significant increase in the number of people enjoying walking and riding on the new routes.

“I would particularly like to extend my thanks to the Lancashire Environment Fund, the River Ribble Trust and the Forestry Commission for helping to fund the bridge.”

The official opening by borough councillor Bea Foster and County Coun Marcus Johnstone will take place at 1pm on Saturday, and will be followed by a short walk up to Rowley Lake and back on the new route.

Coun Johnstone, LCC’s cabinet member for environment, planning and culture, said: “The Brun Valley Forest Park provides opportunities for Burnley people to enjoy nature on their doorstep and exercise at the same time, which is good for their health and wellbeing.

“The new bridge opens up another easy route from the town centre to Rowley Lake, which is a beautiful spot to visit.”

Last year, Territorial Army soldiers were helped by youngsters on a Prince’s Trust course to fashion a 120-metre looped track that would be suitable for mountain and BMX bikes.