Actor Martin Clunes opens Great Dragon Ride at Margam Park

martin clunes
Image caption The actor Martin Clunes says the route is a 'huge achievement'

A 293-mile (471km) bridleway through Wales has been opened by the actor and animal enthusiast Martin Clunes.

The Men Behaving Badly star opened the Great Dragon Ride which runs from Margam Park, Port Talbot, to Ffynnongroyw in Flintshire.

Clunes is president of the British Horse Society (BHS), the driving force behind the north to south route.

The comedy actor told BBC Wales the route had been eight years in the making and was a "huge achievement".

The route runs from Margam up through the Brecon Beacons to Knighton, Powys, west to Talybont, near Aberystwyth, north at Pennant and finishing in Ffynnongroyw.

It has connected bridleways, byways and quiet lanes for riders, walkers and cyclists to use.

'Great gig'

"This is one of my duties as president and it's a really great gig. I've met really great people and got to ride horses," the comedy star said.

Clunes and his wife, television producer Philippa Braithwaite who was also at the event, are animal lovers and keep 16 horses at their home in Dorset.

For the BHS, the project has been a long time coming.

"It's hard dealing with lots of of different councils - it's taken them eight years to get here and that's a huge achievement," said Clunes, who opened the route at Margam Park.

"And it will create opportunities for businesses along the route.

"We live in such a wonderful country and we all want somewhere to go and ride horses - and it will give somewhere for cyclists to go, too."

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites