Somerset

Exmoor's Tarr Steps partly washed away by floodwater

Damaged Tarr Steps under water Image copyright ENPA
Image caption Exmoor National Park Authority said "exceptional rainfall" could cause slabs to wash away "every few years"

Part of an ancient stone footbridge has been washed away in flooding on Exmoor.

It comes only four years after £10,000 was spent repairing the Tarr Steps in Somerset when the stone monument was previously damaged by floodwater.

Exmoor National Park Authority said "exceptional rainfall" could cause slabs to wash away "every few years".

The 50m (164ft) Grade I-listed bridge over the River Barle, which is still under water, attracts thousands of visitors every year.

It is known as a "Clapper" bridge, which is believed to have derived from the Latin word "claperius", meaning stack or pile of stones.

Somerset County Council said: "The bridge is an enduring and iconic feature of the Exmoor landscape that has been in use since medieval times. As an ancient monument the bridge must be put back exactly the way it was.

"The river is currently in high flow and we will have to wait until the flow reduces, which may be a few months, before we can plan repairs."

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