Repairs should begin “as soon as possible” on a collapsed road near Manaccan after the council performed a U-turn on its decision.

Cornwall Council had previously said it wanted to reclassify Carne Road, leading to St Anthony, as a bridleway after a landslip last Easter made for costly repairs.

A study commissioned by the council and carried out by Cormac estimated it would cost £555,000 to build a retaining wall, although it would still cost £300,000 to downgrade the road to a bridleway.

Following uproar from local residents, however, the council has now confirmed it would carry out repairs after all and introduce a three-tonne weight limit along the central section of the road, to prevent further problems.

An agreement would also be made with the National Trust and the local landowner – Richard Graham Vivian, who owns the Bosahan Estate that the road falls within – to manage the trees along the edge.

Bert Biscoe, Cornwall Council’s cabinet member for transport, and highways manager Andy Stevenson met with local residents in Manaccan last Wednesday, at a public meeting organised by the St Anthony Parish Meeting chaired by Clive Dudley.

Speaking after the meeting Mr Biscoe praised the positive approach of the local community in making the case for a different, “more rounded” approach.

He said: “There was a great deal of concern among local residents and businesses about the impact of reclassifying this road which leads to St Anthony in Meneage Church.

“It is important to look at such schemes not just from an engineering perspective, but also to consider their potential social, economic and environmental impact.

“In this case the local community put forward a very strong case for the road to be repaired and we will aim to start work on the repairs as soon as possible in the new financial year.”

He told the meeting that he had received letters from a whole range of protestors, including a local funeral director, a parish council in Nottinghamshire and even a local bishop.

The main concerns were that any closure would affect the viability of local businesses and St Anthony Church, and leave local people and visitors vulnerable when the only remaining road to the hamlet became either unpassable or gridlocked with traffic.

The change of heart has been welcomed by residents, including boatyard owner Anthony Jenkin, and West Cornwall MP Andrew George who met with residents in January at the site.

Mr George said: “I am very grateful that Cornwall Council has listened to local people and have agreed to reinstate Carne Road. Credit goes to all those local residents and all those who campaigned to have this vital road restored.”