Author Topic: I want to walk there..........and why?  (Read 2010 times)

Mel

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #15 on: 21:00:28, 16/11/18 »
I question my ability to convey my thoughts in understandable prose.


Perhaps this is why I got the impression you have an axe to grind. Obviously I got the wrong end of the stick there and it is simply me that is thick  O0



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ninthace

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #16 on: 10:27:53, 17/11/18 »
How many here could point to a a place on the map and say "I want to be able to walk there, but there is no legal access", then provide a cogent reason why they should be able to walk there, which can logically refute the notion of Private Land.

Has anyone else got examples, perhaps I might be able to match one for one.
Sorry but no, I can’t say that this has been an issue for me.  Paths that are not passable because they are not walked - yes. Paths obstructed by crop or dumped rubbish - yes.  Paths that don’t exist where I want them to be - no.
Is it perhaps an historic problem specific to your area?
In recent years my walking has been done in Snowdonia, Anglesey, Cumbria, North Lancs, North Yorks, Co Durham, Devon, Cornwall, W Somerset and S Dorset. Most of my routes are circular.
Solvitur Ambulando

barewirewalker

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #17 on: 10:46:29, 17/11/18 »

 I got the wrong end of the stick    O0
Being of that generation that survived an education that used corporal punishment, I perhaps have a deeper understanding of the difference between the thin end and the thick end. Both have their uses and both leave different impressions,

Perhaps this is a great analogy for direction this topic is progressing;
It would be great...of course...if we could get a Scottish type system where we could wander as freely as possible, with emphasis being on walkers to not cause damage, or make unreasonable intrusions on privacy. But...I think we all deep down know BWW is right to suggest that is extremely unlikely...and some system of putting "pressure" on landowners to allow reasonable route extensions/ improvements would surely be better than present situation...where it appears there is more chance of an existing footpath being lost, than a new one granted.
I know Mel shy's away from expressions of conflict, but a stick is also a lever, the thick end and the thin end can be used to different purpose. If we leisure users of our countryside were to express how some seemingly little used ways could be made into more effective routes, then the thin end of the stick with persistent wiggling would open up a way so that the thick end, which matches the intellect of the landowner, would become more apparent.

There is a clue to my thinking in a link I left in my third post. I don't think I put an old farmhouse in the middle of the M6; now a farm access bridge, a roadside gate (shown on Google Earth) field margins either side of this access bridge, leading to a dual carriageway A road served with and extensive length of pavement seems to be such a coincidence of public infrastructure, that its a shame to waste the 3 or more miles of countryside RoW that leads in from the west.
Add to this, the rail line. Built in the 19th century, that bridge has a right of way over it, but the bridge over the motorway, built in the 20th century does not have a right of way over it.
What is the overall geography; A narrow gap of countyside between the Metropolitan areas of Stafford and Stoke, this is split by the urban area of Stone. Leaving 2 corridors of countryside of which this is the southern corridor.
I think this a travesty of planning, lacks imagination and there is a very simple answer, also cheap.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

barewirewalker

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #18 on: 12:30:55, 17/11/18 »
Is it perhaps an historic problem specific to your area?
In recent years my walking has been done in Snowdonia, Anglesey, Cumbria, North Lancs, North Yorks, Co Durham, Devon, Cornwall, W Somerset and S Dorset. Most of my routes are circular.
I notice Shropshire, Cheshire and Herefordshire do not feature in your list, collectively they block the approach to the Welsh Marches. I suppose this observation may well be in the interest of the long distance walker, but it has also often foiled my attempts to exploit terrain.

 Often there are special places within an area, like mini AONB's, there were several on the farms I grew up on. I could write on them in greater detail, but they were often places the farmer would take his wife on a Sunday evening or the farm workmen would picnic on Bank Holidays with their families.
 As many once tenanted holdings have fallen back into the management of the overall landowner, these special locations have become trashed because they are not valued.  Often there are no ways to these places so how can they be valued even recognised by the rest of us.

Sadly much of the richness of our countryside will be lost forever
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

Andies

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #19 on: 13:05:31, 18/11/18 »
Living some distance from any substantial areas of Access Land, I'm reliant upon ROW to enjoy a decent walk away from roads, albeit I will struggle to do this even then without some road walking.

Access Scottish style would be great but I just don't see that happening in England. Farming and the landscape is significantly different in southern England in particular, and I haven't detected any real political or recreational will being displayed to ever make the Scottish style of access happen in England. So I suspect we are stuck with what we have.

There I think lies the problem BWW makes. When I walk I am often frustrated by the absence of a ROW, that leads to dangerous road walking, or just turning back to find a safer way. What adds to this frustration is when you see obvious routes with the usual "private" or "no right of way" signage that Suffolk landowners in particular seem to have a great liking for. Then if you really want to add to the frustration an examination of old maps shows many of these routes were previously marked as ROW.

What went wrong? I have increasingly come to the view that the creation of the definitive map was corrupted. Those in local government and particularly parish councils, often controlled by local landowners, chose to exercise their power to not record ROW post 1949.

How did they get away with it? People's life styles changed, cars took over as the primary form of local transport, and so ROW disappeared on the ground. Job done unless anyone so minded raised the issues, but I suspect all too often the same people that corrupted the map, thought to keep it corrupted.

In Suffolk many villages, usually those with big estates, didn't have a single ROW recorded until the tireless work of John Andrews who was the Ramblers local footpath officer took on the task of getting many ROW reinstated to the Definitive Map. Without his work it is difficult to see what would have happened. And the battle goes on to this day!

So why should we bother about this? For one it is part of our history, secondly it was corruption, thirdly it is our right to do so. It matters not to me if I am the only one, and it often seems that way, in my area that is bothered about these issues; I will try in my small way to protect what we have and get back what has been lost through corruption.

Am I wasting my time? Maybe to some but I believe I'm doing some good. There may come a time when it's not just me and Mrs A, and an occasional dog walker that uses many of the ROW near to me!



jimbob

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #20 on: 17:23:10, 18/11/18 »
As a taxpayer  I support British  farming financislly a lot, at least as much as I do the NHS. Without subsidies most farmers would be either bankrupt or subsistence farmers. 

Therfore I believe we have every right to expect our Government to give us English the same rights as the Scottish (and soon Welsh). In fact it should be made compulsory for those receiving subsidies to do so.

In the mean time I walk where I want ROW or not. I do no damage nor do I invade anyone's right to a bit of privacy. Since tresspass is in the main a civil offence I see little  risk in do doing as the court case would cost the landowners hell of a lot more than it would be worth.


Too little, too late, too bad......

barewirewalker

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #21 on: 12:16:38, 19/11/18 »
Thanks Pauldawes and Richardh1905 for your support on the previous page, the public apology the Duke of Devonshire made only came to my notice in reading the Country Walking Magazine in the local library, perhaps the rarer bits of useful knowledge I have ever gleaned from it's pages, as I sensed that their editorial is firmly in the camp of appeasement to the extent that even moderate criticism will upset the status quo.

Thanks to Andies for your support, you and Paul have so often come to my rescue when I feel that I am labouring against a current of indifference.

Ninthace makes a welcome suggestion as to why some may not see this problem as clearly as others.

Jimbob's point that we all pay the money that goes to into the pot from which Single Farm Supplements are paid is only half of it, as customers we also provide the farmer with his income. Trouble with SFSs, they often go into the pocket of the larger landowner. The Landowner is really, as a collective group, are Nouveau Farmers and sadly slow to pick up on the realisation that they and their historic attitude to the occupation of our countryside can conflict with the necessary good relationship between 'food producers' and their customers.

As a once active member of the National Farmer's Union I find myself saying WHY to exhortations to support British Farming, and I have to think deeply that it is the attitudes of the property owner and the freeholder, which is making me question a loyalty that goes back generations in my family, where a grandfather was a founder member of the NFU.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

Andies

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #22 on: 12:52:36, 19/11/18 »
In the mean time I walk where I want ROW or not. I do no damage nor do I invade anyone's right to a bit of privacy. Since tresspass is in the main a civil offence I see little  risk in do doing as the court case would cost the landowners hell of a lot more than it would be worth.

Totally agree and do so myself. Unfortunately the odd confrontation has resulted over the years, which Mrs A in particular doesn't like, and I would much rather avoid!

A couple of amusing examples come to mind:

1. Walking along a very narrow country lane with hedge rows right to the sides with no verges, I decided to walk along the headland of the field beside the lane, which was entirely setaside to grass cover, and had been for some years. Unfortunately as we walked along a dog walker appeared who turned out to be the landowners wife. I knew we were in trouble when greeted with the "can I help you", shortly followed by the "your trespassing statement". I explained very politely why we were where we were, but we were still told to get off ASAP with a lecture about dogs and wildlife, albeit we had no dog with us! This was all the more funny as the landowner was vice chairman of Suffolk's Local Access Forum. I did however get some subsequent pleasure in checking all the ROW on the landowners property and then submitting multiple reports to Suffolk CC of all the missing signposts, waymarkers and other issues. These were all subsequently dealt with, and I am especially pleased with the signs for ROW near the farmhouse.

2. Whilst walking in a nearby wood on ROW's, I decided rather than retracing my steps that I would use the wide headland around the wood to get back. Unfortunately a farm worker spotted us and charged over in a massive tractor. He wanted to know what we were doing and why we were there. I explained we were just walking along the headland etc, but was then given a lecture about this headland being for wildlife which we would have disturbed and damaged. His argument subsided somewhat when I pointed out he had just driven goodness knows how many tons of tractor along the same headland, and that with due respect my boots weren't quite so damaging!

Both examples I think demonstrate the entrenched views of the landowners that it seems can even extend to their servants. They struggle to share and always will, unless forced by government. They cannot resist the temptation to destroy signage and seem to delight in obstructing and failing to reinstate ROW after cultivation. Our ROW Departments are under resourced and struggle to do even the basics. As a ROW Officier told me last week: " waymarking is no longer a priority and we encourage volunteers through parish councils to take this on"; some hope round here!

pauldawes

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #23 on: 14:44:48, 19/11/18 »

Both examples I think demonstrate the entrenched views of the landowners that it seems can even extend to their servants. They struggle to share and always will, unless forced by government. They cannot resist the temptation to destroy signage and seem to delight in obstructing and failing to reinstate ROW after cultivation. Our ROW Departments are under resourced and struggle to do even the basics. As a ROW Officier told me last week: " waymarking is no longer a priority and we encourage volunteers through parish councils to take this on"; some hope round here!


The damage to signage is one that I genuinely struggle to understand, I'd have thought well maintained signs benefit landowner and farmer just as much as walker. Many a time I've blundered across wrong pieces of farmland because signs have been damaged or removed.


Maybe some do "calculation" that absence of ROW signs will stop walkers completely, rather than increase "blunder rate"?


Like BBW I've often wondered why issue doesn't arouse more interest on these boards...and have often speculated if its because most walkers here strongly prefer "open access" walks (e.g. moorland or mountain walking with wide sweeping views and fairly few fences, field boundaries, etc), rather than fairly intensely farmed areas, passing through farmyards, etc.

barewirewalker

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #24 on: 16:04:06, 19/11/18 »
Walking along a very narrow country lane with hedge rows right to the sides with no verges, I decided to walk along the headland of the field beside the lane, which was entirely setaside to grass cover, and had been for some years.
There are numerous precedents that show historically the social need for a deviation such as you took was allowed, and these precedents can be seen on today's OS maps, not just the old OS sheets pre-1940.SO 38822 41303is just such a one. If you look at it in the 1:25k OS as shown here; You will see a RoW join the lane, but a grey FP over the hedgerow in the field margin, this deviation in the route of the overall way has been mapped as far back as the 1880's, if my memory serves me right.

If you open up Google Earth, zoom in on the British Isles and ADD (in tool bar) a placemark, say in the North Sea, then replace the longitude and latitude with;
52° 4'1.90"N
2°53'47.08"W
Then zoom in and add another placemark, correct it to;
52° 3'57.36"N
2°53'28.85"W
You should have a placemark at either end of the stretch of road where pedestrian traffic historically walked the field headland / field margin.

If you now go into street view in GE, you should see the reason why. The field level is substantially higher than that of the road surface even though it has been metalled. Imagine back in time before hard surface, when a pair working boots was the norm and women wore leather shoes and long skirts. With a lane full of muddy water especially on market days following flocks of sheep or herds of cattle; of course they chose an alternative route. If you then look the length and direction of the off road routes that join this road, it is possible to judge the strength of way. So are the local landowners going to risk public displeasure by shutting of these footpaths.
Actually this example is only 1.6 miles as the crow flies from the home of Harry Cotterell the landowner, who was president of the CLA when they published their policy on access.
The fact that modern day traffic has taken the place of water, mud and livestock has failed to sink into their privilege atrophied brains. They created an access policy without bothering to learning about the history of the DM and without looking at any maps to see what it tells about the ways walked in the past, and applying those lessons to social changes of today.


« Last Edit: 16:07:49, 19/11/18 by barewirewalker »
BWW
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gunwharfman

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #25 on: 16:57:12, 19/11/18 »
Its been my experience that 'territory nutters', the Mr and Mrs Bouquet's of this world, can exist everywhere! I know of two people for example. who live on a basic Wimpy type urban sprawl housing estate in Windsor can get really irate and in a fluster if they feel that 'their land' has been invaded by the odd ball, a child touching 'their blades of grass' at the pavement edge and so on. I was on the Cotswold Way a few years ago and sat down on a small patch of grass to eat a sandwich, with my feet resting on the tarmac road when some bloke came out and started to rant that I should move away because my bum was on 'his' grass! I told him to sue me! In Maidstone my sister also knows of people who have very similar attitudes. In France this year one old chap even threatened to set three dogs on me if I walked any further up 'his' lane! I didn't fancy that so I turned around, walked 20 yds back and then walked across a field to get to the footpath I was looking for. I hoped it was his field, not sure if it was?

I can't say that I've had any real problems with actual farmers but I'm sure it will happen some day! Unless they have dogs or a shotgun to hand I'm sure I will just tell them to 'eff off. I don't normally swear but its tempting sometimes!

jimbob

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #26 on: 17:42:05, 19/11/18 »
Its been my experience that 'territory nutters', the Mr and Mrs Bouquet's of this world, can exist everywhere!

Unless they have dogs or a shotgun to hand I'm sure I will just tell them to 'eff off. I don't normally swear but its tempting sometimes!
O0 O0 O0 Man after my own heart. :)

Too little, too late, too bad......

ninthace

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #27 on: 18:27:51, 19/11/18 »
I have only had one confrontation - I was exploring the moors to the west of the Nine Standards and tried cutting across a small island of private land with a house on it in the middle of Open Access Land.  A man appeared and invited me to walk back down the track I had just come up.  I played the innocent pleading ignorance but he was having none of it and followed me back in his Land Rover to make sure I left the way I came.  I went round on the moor instead which was a more direct route anyway albeit a bit boggier.  No skin off my nose really but a lift back to the cattle grid would have been nice.


Conversely, in Weardale I walked a footpath that went up someone's drive, past their back door and out across their back lawn without a problem.  In Mallerstang, I walked a path that went right across someone's front garden; the owner was in the garden and said he was happy to see me as I was the first person he had spoken to in weeks.  In Devon I followed a path that went up a house drive and out across a field; the owner pointed out the line of the path for me.  He also told me that  in the previous year the Council had replaced the bridge across the steam at the bottom of the field and as far as he knew, we were the first people to use it.
Solvitur Ambulando

barewirewalker

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #28 on: 09:47:31, 20/11/18 »
In Mallerstang, I walked a path that went right across someone's front garden; the owner was in the garden and said he was happy to see me as I was the first person he had spoken to in weeks.
The rare meeting in the countryside, where a local greets you with this attitude, is a reminder of the fundamental and historic reasons that are the core of the access network, communication.

In today's culture, isolationism to block off all interruption to electronic communication is considered normal practice. It is the footpaths themselves that have shown me, perhaps reminded me of the people, who once used the footpaths we now use for our leisure. The doctor visiting an outlying cottage to treat a patient, the local vicar ministering to his parishioners, neighbours sharing news or just friendship, the local midwife being summoned at all hours of the day and night, do I need to dig into my memory more, to show that there are a myriad of reasons that the network of footpaths and bridleways were an essential part of yesterday's society? The need for that network is different today, but equally diverse.

I read in the landowners' propaganda that our network of footpaths is made up of 'shortcuts and ways to work of yesteryear', not suited for leisure walking. But those are the ways we are allowed into our countryside.

In a topic I started  Two High Bridges, some Elephant Grass and Adventure, Mrs BWW and I found a fascinating stretch footpath, dangling as if in mid air, totally uselessly in a glorious stretch countryside, this little length of RoW can link to two magnificent structures, imposing reminders of another age. This is the sort of infrastructure that should be linked into the access network.

Is it possible? Using Googe Earth it is apparent that field margins and gates largely provided a continuation of way to other rights of way. Is this a tragic waste of valuable resources?
« Last Edit: 10:08:44, 20/11/18 by barewirewalker »
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

pleb

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Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #29 on: 10:04:45, 20/11/18 »



 In Mallerstang, I walked a path that went right across someone's front garden; the owner was in the garden and said he was happy to see me as I was the first person he had spoken to in weeks.  In Devon I followed a path that went up a house drive and out across a field; the owner pointed out the line of the path for me.  He also told me that  in the previous year the Council had replaced the bridge across the steam at the bottom of the field and as far as he knew, we were the first people to use it.

I may have walked the same, about 3/4 years ago, middle aged woman was it? She was chatty and told me which way to go.