Author Topic: I want to walk there..........and why?  (Read 2009 times)

ninthace

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2728
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #30 on: 12:00:15, 20/11/18 »
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.
There's a clue in the sentence  :)
..... 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.
Solvitur Ambulando

Andies

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 446
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #31 on: 12:58:05, 20/11/18 »
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.

Yes the much peddled argument. It has some limited truth but is far to simplistic to explain the ROW network that we have been left with. People used "rights of way" in addition to the road network as walking was the norm for the majority, especially when life was more community based. So many paths in particular were about not just getting to work, but importantly getting to church, the public house, or to exercise some leisure activity. Obviously people took the easiest and most functional route, it was accepted. My own father talks of just walking where they needed to go in the village. It was accepted that people had a "right" to walk there way before the concept of a right of way that we have today.

Society has changed, and the few of us interested in these rights of way, are left with the bits that actually made in onto the definitive map. It is frustrating to see on the ground, on maps new and old, just what didn't survive the corrupted process post 1949.

The petty minded greed of some landowners to obstruct and avoid their obligations with regard to ROW is so disappointing. I applaud anyone who works to restore ROW that corruption of the definitive map stole from the nation, and in my own small way try to work the system to defend what we have against the odds, with under funded Rights of Way Departments, and the CLA's inspired desire for us to "get off their land".

Well I'm not going away, in fact, I'm probably coming back next week to check those rights of way again ;D

barewirewalker

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2779
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #32 on: 10:46:22, 21/11/18 »
Yes the much peddled argument. It has some limited truth but is far to simplistic to explain the ROW network that we have been left with. People used "rights of way" in addition to the road network as walking was the norm for the majority, especially when life was more community based. So many paths in particular were about not just getting to work, but importantly getting to church, the public house, or to exercise some leisure activity. Obviously people took the easiest and most functional route, it was accepted.
Certainly glad your not going away.
There one type of route not on your list, one that I suspect is rarely if ever recognized. Only through my local knowledge did I first recognize it and then started to see this type of route and the pattern of it elsewhere and in many places. I call it the 'Market Day' route, they start well out in the countryside and zero in on a county town or historic commercial center.

The number of tributaries can indicate 'strength of way' and I believe a strong circumstantial argument for a missing section being part of a right of way. If the corruption of the definitive map were recognized then such circumstantial evidence may be considered strong enough to add to appeals for reinstatement of lostways at Public Enquires or even go so far to bridge the need for them.
I also believe that the future potential, by adding new sections to weak lines of way, should be argued for.

At a family gathering yesterday I spoke at length with a dairy farmer from Worcestshire, the trouble is the intellectual barrier I could not get through was a multitude of instances of public misbehaviour, high on the list was the quality dog ownership.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

Innominate Man

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1988
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #33 on: 00:28:36, 22/11/18 »
In a very, very small way I have seen a pretty shoddy example of manipulation of 'position' by a land owner, which on such a small scale indicates how widespread the corruption on the bigger scale can come about.
This involved a family owning land with one of the members being in a position of authority & influence 'locally'. To keep this brief - footpaths were cleared and RoW were maintained as well as a degree of tolerance with people going 'off route'.
Some land became ripe for development and plans submitted .......... everything was very amicable until such time as planning permission was granted.
Now, the situation is quite different.
The land sold to a developer, the original owner no doubt pocketing a substantial sum and faded off the scene.
Very quickly afterwards the vegetation is left overgrown and any opportunity to shout at anyone (even supposed 'friends' of old) even slightly off route, is taken.
Apologies if this is all quite vague - I am sure you can fill in the blanks.
Bottom line is ' while I want a favour from you, the old - you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours ' existed: Once the favour was done, the situation turned to 'you can scratch my back, but I'll [censored] up yours'  came into play.
When I think of this on a bigger scale, it makes me realise the whole system stinks.
Only a hill but all of life to me,
Up there, between the sunset and the sea.  Geoffrey Winthrop Young.

barewirewalker

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2779
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #34 on: 11:40:27, 22/11/18 »
In a very, very small way I have seen a pretty shoddy example of manipulation of 'position' by a land owner, which on such a small scale indicates how widespread the corruption on the bigger scale can come about.
Having told the story of Gordon Miller, agent for Lady Berwick and his legacy, as local authority officer, which has cut off a county town from much of it's surrounding countryside, I won't jump strait in and repeat it. It is interesting as one pokes around in the manure heap of local politics, the whiffs of corruption that suddenly erupt.

Perhaps 10 years ago, maybe more, I was walking in Devon, near Aveton Gifford, Mrs BWW and I were enjoying a particularly attractive valley, typical to the local terrain, when we came to a property, straddling the valley on our side of that valley. It was clearly an old converted mill, that once would have drawn it's power from the river and the mill's customers would use the ways to it over many centuries. This is an example where a property owner, who is fortunate enough to secure a home in a beautiful part of our countryside needs to balance their wish for privacy with the common interest.

There are many locations throughout the country where such anomalies exist and it is very difficult to get a Right of Way diverted in such a case. What surprised me was a massive 'Privacy Zig Zag', that yanked this historic way up through 4 maybe 6 contours lines to a field margin well above the level of the roof of the property, a few yards along a field margin the down the other side of it. Making an attractive and gentle stroll into a feat of hill climbing. To make this even worse, a simple addition of a bit of field margin would have added another feature to this diversion. This did not bother Mrs BWW and I at the time but might challenge me over a decade later with a heart attack in the bag. (Fortunately the stent is keeping me active).

If I could locate that property I would have provided a map ref. seems to escape me for the moment, but as the years have rolled by I have been able flesh out this example. Reading CLA publications I learnt that that landowner's lobby group had replaced a long standing professional adviser on access matters. I had read a few articles of his, and a phrase that sticks in my mind is, in order reach an understanding with users of the access network landowners might have to, "Give away more than they take." My guess is that this individual was trained and worked as a Land Agent.

The above phrase popped up in one of Harry Cotterell's articles the year he was Vice President of the CLA, but by the time he became President, the tone had changed, 'giving anything away' had disappeared, as he struggled with his 'Common Sense Approach' to access. The position of access adviser had been taken by lawyer, Sarah Slade, a profession probably not so familiar with history of access. I think the land agent was more familiar with the reasons behind the corruption of the definitive map and a lawyer is of a profession that works at dissembling the truth.

 At the time I was on Shropshire's LAF and during a meeting I was sitting next to one of the equestrian delegates, who had worked on the Stepping Forward Initiative, as a landowner expounded a particularly selfish bit of logic, I muttered under my breath, "Straight from the Gospel of Sarah Slade". To which I got a nudge and this comment, "I know her, been on committee with, she is rabid anti access". We later agreed that she fitted the part of Cruella DaVille of the countryside, instead of stealing puppies, she manipulates the privileged to steal the countryside from ordinary folk.


Since that exchange I have stumbled across references to this lawyer, pinpointed her location, which is Devon, where she was on that counties LAF and would not be surprised on other bodies, where she can further the cause of landowner interests, but that is probably enough to explain such great privacy zig zag and has given some sense to it.

It was this chain of events that led me suspect that the CLA are well aware of the corruption of the definitive map and has led me to think that there is an active policy to take over the chairs of LAF's pre 2026, so as to ensure covering up any exposure and limiting any publicity on the full extent of the damage to our access network.
« Last Edit: 11:57:17, 22/11/18 by barewirewalker »
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

ninthace

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2728
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #35 on: 12:28:20, 22/11/18 »
From your description: Ashford Mill SX 68773 48265


Edited to add.  If I am right there is no indication of a path beyond the mill on the 1842 tithe map.
http://www.ag-project.co.uk/userfiles/file/map10.jpg
« Last Edit: 12:46:23, 22/11/18 by ninthace »
Solvitur Ambulando

Innominate Man

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1988
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #36 on: 12:50:55, 22/11/18 »
For my part, I joined a local 'Statutory Body' - if that is the right phrase/description.
I did so in response to a local landowner attempting to build on so called protected land.
A few years later I realise I am fighting an incoming tide and have made little if no difference: I had hoped to make changes from within.
Now disillusioned I am considering leaving, but that smacks of giving up and I don't want to do that either. A moral dilemma.
Needless to say, following an appeal the Government appointed Inspector overturned the original planning refusal and granted permission for building to go-ahead.
I have absolutely no faith in the independence of these Govt. appointed Inspectors. They seem to be there to do nothing more than ensure the Govt. policies are enabled.
Similarly to your case - the wealthy owner enlisted the services of a consultant who has a track record in getting previously rejected applications passed.
I appreciate RoW and building development are different matters, but essentially it comes down to robbing the ordinary folk of their previously protected rural spaces for recreational amenity.
I may emigrate to New Zealand  ;D
Only a hill but all of life to me,
Up there, between the sunset and the sea.  Geoffrey Winthrop Young.

ninthace

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2728
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #37 on: 13:03:37, 22/11/18 »

I may emigrate to New Zealand  ;D


Yes - they have never heard of public rights of way there so you will be starting with a blank canvas(s)!


I sympathise with your fight with the planners.  There is a solicitor somewhere in Cumbria who hates me as I have twice successfully blocked his attempts to build houses on a field with a ROW across it.  It is a battle that will eventually be lost as the field is still earmarked for housing in the Local Plan but I have managed to get any development on that site written in towards the end of the Plan in 2032.
« Last Edit: 13:32:06, 22/11/18 by ninthace »
Solvitur Ambulando

barewirewalker

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2779
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #38 on: 13:57:14, 22/11/18 »

Yes - they have never heard of public rights of way there so you will be starting with a blank canvas(s)!
Except the Queen's Chain.

And thanks for the Map ref. will check it out.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

ninthace

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2728
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #39 on: 14:07:23, 22/11/18 »
Except the Queen's Chain.



Yes I knew about that.  There is I believe also a small strip alongside any public highway but as far as I can tell, while they have recognised hiking trails, there is no equivalent of our network of public footpaths and bridleways.  Looks like its national parks, beaches, some rivers and roads only.
Solvitur Ambulando

Andies

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 446
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #40 on: 15:23:14, 22/11/18 »
It is always interesting to hear from others about their struggles against the system. My own frustration with Suffolk CC Rights of Way Department got the better of me a few days ago, and I probably wasted another half an hour of walking time to email Suffolk's Local Access Forum.

In particular, I have been pursuing on and off over the past five, yes five years, an issue surrounding an obstructed footpath in a nearby village. The landowner uses the field the footpath crosses, next to some farm buildings, for horses and has erected various fences, most with electric fencing added, has locked gates, all the waymarking has disappeared, and there are numerous internal fences within the field sub-dividing it. It would be pointless my elaborating here on my various attempts to resolve this over the years, but the matter rubbles on and I'm very disappointed with Suffolk's ROW Department.

This coupled with the issue of a recently (February 2018) created footpath in another nearby village after a long battle over almost 40 years to get it established; after which the Council are now doing nothing (it seems) to signpost or ensure this footpath is actually marked on the ground by the respective landowners, who obviously given the forty year battle don't want it there!

Anyway frustration took over and I have emailed the Local Access Forum. My basic question was: given my experiences of often not being able to get basic issues such as signage, obstructions, path reinstatement after cultivation, dealt with in my experience after years of chasing the Rights of Way Department; what oversight does the LAF have over the Departments performance. I pointed out that the minutes of their quarterly meetings seemed to focus on issues such as the Coastal Path and Network Rails level crossing closure plans, which are of course important; but there never seemed to be anything about the basics? If the basics aren't happening then there is something wrong in my opinion?

I doubt I will even get a response, and I suspect if I do it will just be some clever politically correct one; but I thought I would try and see if there was any real concern for my issues!

BWW I know was once a party to one of these LAF's and I wonder if he feels I'm wasting my time? Are they actually concerned with the bread and butter issues, or are they just a politically correct box ticking forum, that I fear gets dominated by the usual "ruling" types who know better than us?

sussamb

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6576
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #41 on: 15:41:27, 22/11/18 »
I had the same issue in Sussex and was told that nothing could be done about electric fences etc that had blocked a ROW for over 10 years, demolishing stiles in the process. These too were erected to create paddocks for horses and the landowner had created an unofficial diversion around the area.  I went down the route of issuing what is known as a Form 1 etc, and got the path, stiles etc reinstated. Details are here and costs nothing to issue but a bit of time. 


https://www.ramblers.org.uk/advice/improve-the-path-network/how-to-get-an-obstruction-removed.aspx
Where there's a will ...

ninthace

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2728
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #42 on: 16:03:59, 22/11/18 »
They are not all bad.  One of my neighbours has an LDP across her land.  In the past she approached the authority to cut back an overgrown hedge but was told there was no budget so now she has the work done annually at her own expense.
Solvitur Ambulando

barewirewalker

  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2779
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #43 on: 17:42:59, 22/11/18 »
BWW I know was once a party to one of these LAF's and I wonder if he feels I'm wasting my time? Are they actually concerned with the bread and butter issues, or are they just a politically correct box ticking forum, that I fear gets dominated by the usual "ruling" types who know better than us?
As a member of a LAF I was disappointed at the amount of direct reaction we had from the users of the access network. I got on when they were trying to find people to fill the places, I am not a member of any organization and it was this excuse the Landowner, who took over the chair, chucked me off post haste. He bought in a stooge to fill his place on the LAF whilst in the chair, then vacated the chair and his stooge took it over. I am not overly concerned that I am no longer a member of a LAF, but I do worry that younger people are taking for granted the good will that they expect to come from their public bodies.

A Local Access Forum or the grander titles the have used to disguise there purpose, are a board made up of users and occupiers of the countryside. Any issue that a member may get onto the agenda of a meeting is subject to the scrutiny and discussion of all members and minuted. The advice of a LAF is supposed to go through to the full council, as it was set up as a statutory advisory body. So if you think that issues are not being dealt with or being bought to the attention of the council, you should bring this to the attention of a Councillor, who might be sympathetic or even send your complaints to the Portfolio holder, who is
supposed to attend LAF meetings.

If there is one thing that I may have contributed to the debate, is to try to get access users to identify between the two identities of farmer and landowner. Even an owner/occupiers should be aware how their occupation of the countryside is affected by their attitude to property or production.

My advice would be to send copies of any issues you might take up with a LAF to both the NFU regional secretary and the local CLA office. Both organizations are very conscious of public image.

Farmers need the good opinion of the British public, landowners are doing the best to despoil a well earned good reputation, but they also need grass roots membership as the historic veto in the House of Lords has disappeared.

If only the BMC and the Ramblers would really understand the value of exposing the 'Corruption of the Definitive Map', this would [censored] the bubble of landowners arrogance, cause a loss of face and might get the powers that be realize the access network is a valuable asset, worth investing in.

OH dear, using a pin to burst a bubble is bad language
« Last Edit: 17:47:58, 22/11/18 by barewirewalker »
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

Andies

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 446
Re: I want to walk there..........and why?
« Reply #44 on: 12:01:22, 23/11/18 »
My frustration is that the ROW Department often seems unable to do the basics. The individuals you deal with seem to make the right responses, but then everything goes quiet, so you chase again, then nothing; and then you repeat in a few months when you decide to try again........by which time there's a different ROW Officer, who knows nothing about it, so you explain again etc.......

Hence my question to the LAF: what are they doing to monitor the performance or not of the ROW Department? If the basics aren't being done what hope for anything else?

I firmly believe that there aren't the resources for ROW anymore, if indeed there ever was?

If the LAF isn't checking up on them, who is?