TOWN councillors have approved spending thousands of pounds to assess what needs doing to improve the condition of the Town Walks.

The walks, which are based on the Roman footprint for Dorchester, are owned by the town council, which agreed to transfer them to Dorset County Council’s Highways Authority.

At a meeting of the policy committee, town clerk Adrian Stuart said the town council spends around £19,000 each year cleaning the walks, and it will cost £5,000 for experts to assess what work needs doing to bring the condition to a standard so the ownership can be transferred.

Dorchester Mayor councillor Stella Jones raised concerns about the standard to which the county council would maintain the walks.

She said: “The standard of the walks as they are is better than a lot of the roads in town.”

But committee chairman councillor Trevor Jones said: “If there’s no confidence that the county council will maintain the walks in perpetuity to the standard we would like to see, we don’t have to go down that route.”

Councillor Molly Rennie added: “Unless we as a council take responsibility for making a plan to move forward, they will just crumble away. They are part of our heritage.”