Author Topic: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?  (Read 11604 times)

sunnysky

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Hi all,
I'm asking this because I walked part of the Teesdale way on Sunday, from Over Dinsdale. Glorious day for walking, and stunning scenery! But in several places the footpath has been ploughed up, making walking really difficult. To be fair it does cross some fields going right through the middle, so I can imagine its difficult if you are ploughing to leave a strip of land unploughed, but the walking is almost impossible in places because of recent rainfall levels, and the ploughed up footpath.
 
Tracey

gavceltic

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #1 on: 10:26:29, 18/02/13 »
Not an ideal situation for walkers but we have to remember that farmers have a job to do and a living to make.  This sounds like just one of those things, another route will probably have to be found too because obviously the farmer will intend to plant something in that ploughed ground now too.



Islay...and it's goodbye to care

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yeti

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #2 on: 10:30:37, 18/02/13 »
Not an ideal situation for walkers but we have to remember that farmers have a job to do and a living to make. 
Very valid point O0
 
Although awkward to walk is it worth an arguement with the landowner?
 
 
The landowner is not permitted to plant on a right of way, other than grass etc.
R.I.P. Dave.

roughyed

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #3 on: 10:58:52, 18/02/13 »
From memory they can plough the field but have to reinstate the path with a couple of weeks.

gavceltic

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #4 on: 11:24:20, 18/02/13 »
From memory they can plough the field but have to reinstate the path with a couple of weeks.


that is correct if it is a recognised right of way or footpath but if it is just a simple route that people decide to take to get somewhere then that would not apply.


Is the route used a right of way? t would make a big difference if it was as it will have protection, otherwise there is really nothing to stop the farmer doing what he wants.
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geordie33

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #5 on: 11:29:47, 18/02/13 »
I have come across this quite a bit recently.Some farmers are leaving a strip around the field and thus unofficially altering the r.o.w.Personally I tend not to mind as they do have a living to make so I will go around and technically trespass where possible.One farmer recently had planted across the path but had sprayed the crop on the path a different colour so you could see where to walk.

gavceltic

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #6 on: 11:37:59, 18/02/13 »
I have come across this quite a bit recently.Some farmers are leaving a strip around the field and thus unofficially altering the r.o.w.Personally I tend not to mind as they do have a living to make so I will go around and technically trespass where possible.One farmer recently had planted across the path but had sprayed the crop on the path a different colour so you could see where to walk.


I think that is a great example of working together and keeping everyone happy!  O0
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treehugger

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #7 on: 12:04:02, 18/02/13 »
Very valid point O0
 
Although awkward to walk is it worth an arguement with the landowner?
 
 
The landowner is not permitted to plant on a right of way, other than grass etc.
They frequently plant crops, but it must be nigh on impossible to leave a metre wide strip clear where the path is, so if you know where to tread just trample the crops, that's what I think.

Yogi31

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #8 on: 12:13:56, 18/02/13 »
Landowners round my area are pritty good at reinstating the path after they have ploughed them.
 
The worst offenders seam to be those Horse paddocks, made up from temporary fencing, forcing you to detour round the edge of the field.

robstubbs

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #9 on: 12:32:07, 18/02/13 »
They frequently plant crops, but it must be nigh on impossible to leave a metre wide strip clear where the path is, so if you know where to tread just trample the crops, that's what I think.

I've only come across this a couple of times, one farmer appeared to have planted crops all over, but then sprayed it agin to kill off the crops on that metre wide strip.  Others seem to leave it clear wherever possible.  It isn't easy we know but rules is rules.
 
Rob.

sunnysky

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #10 on: 12:54:57, 18/02/13 »

that is correct if it is a recognised right of way or footpath but if it is just a simple route that people decide to take to get somewhere then that would not apply.


Is the route used a right of way? t would make a big difference if it was as it will have protection, otherwise there is really nothing to stop the farmer doing what he wants.

It is an official footpath, the whole of the Teesdale way is around 90 miles I think, and a recognized long distance walk. I suppose part of the difficulty was in actually knowing where the path was, although in one field the farmer had actually put some twigs in to mark where the path should have been, which was helpful.

fit old bird

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #11 on: 13:56:35, 18/02/13 »
I had the problem of walking across a ploughed field last week. It was a recognised path on the os map, advertised in the council led group walks. It's difficult when you can't see the marker post on the other side, easy to go off course. I recollect walking this path a couple of years ago, it was freshly ploughed then. There aren't many ploughed paths I come across, the majority of the farmers try and mark out the path in some way. I wouldn't think of complaining.
Ilona

yeti

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #12 on: 14:11:43, 18/02/13 »
It makes perfect sense for the landowner to reinstate paths afterwoods for their benifit. After all you wouldn't want anyone dredging across your newly planted crop. Having a maintained path works well for both parties.
R.I.P. Dave.

yeti

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #13 on: 14:18:32, 18/02/13 »
They frequently plant crops, but it must be nigh on impossible to leave a metre wide strip clear where the path is, so if you know where to tread just trample the crops, that's what I think.
Modern day mass production farming equipment limits them to that yes.
R.I.P. Dave.

happyhiker

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Re: Footpaths - are farmers allowed to plough them up?
« Reply #14 on: 14:50:22, 18/02/13 »
My understanding is that a right of way across an arable field can be legally ploughed up, but must be reinstated within 14 days. The minimum width of a cross-field path is supposed to be 1 metre for a footpath and 2 metres for a bridleway I believe. However farmers often do not do any reinstating so in those cases, I think I would be entitlied to trample the crops as long as I was confident where the route was. It is not always obvious and it is in farmers interests to define the path so more crops than necessary are not damaged.

Having said that, farmers need all the help they can get and even if I know where the route is, I am quite happy to walk round the edge of the field and leave as much of the crop as undamaged as possible. Live and let live!