The Westward Ho! gate at Northam Burrows will be closed for four weeks to improve the safety of the gate and reduce congestion before the summer.

Torridge District Council has commissioned works to improve access onto Northam Burrows.

Work will begin on the Pebbleridge Road next week, and will be completed in time for the summer season.

The entrance at the Westward Ho! gate will be undergoing a makeover - with new gates, road widening and a new toll booth, within the park boundary.

It is hoped this will resolve congestion problems experienced here in past, and create a safer and better first impression for visitors.

To carry out these works this entrance will be closed on Tuesday, April 18, for four weeks.

While pedestrian access will be maintained throughout the period, vehicles will need to use Pimpley (Sandymere Road) or Appledore entrances to enter the park.

During the same period the footpath providing access from the slipway car park will also be repaired and enhanced.

High tides and stormy seas have damaged the stile and 'kissing gate', and have also covered the footpath with pebbles.

A new gate will be installed alongside a sleeper bridge that will make it much easier for pedestrians to enter the park at this location.

In addition to these improvements the annual resurfacing of Pebbleridge Road and the realignment of Sandymere Bridge is also scheduled to be carried out in the coming weeks.

Michael Day, Northam Burrows lead ranger, said: "Northam Burrows Country Park is home to some of the rarest wildlife and most beautiful landscape Devon has to offer.

"It is a special place for the local community as well as visitors, and we want to encourage everybody to come and enjoy it.

"We believe the improvement works will make the visitor experience better for both residents and tourists alike and we would like to thank people in advance for their patience while this essential work is carried out"