Public Footpaths - cycling?

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
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Mick F
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby Mick F » 23 Jul 2020, 8:40pm

Who owns the land?

At one end, we knew the people who owned the path there, and since then, the new people have let their land go wild.
It used to be mown a kept neat, and the path through was kept well and maintained and people knew they were passing through a "garden". Now, with new people there, it's uncared for and left and horses and cyclists just carry on not realising.

Further along, the path goes though land belonging to people we know very well, but they've stopped complaining as it falls on deaf ears.

If we owned land along there, I'd erect barriers as as well as big hoardings proclaiming No Horses and No Cycling.
Mick F. Cornwall

rareposter
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby rareposter » 24 Jul 2020, 1:30pm

Mick F wrote:Who owns the land?

At one end, we knew the people who owned the path there, and since then, the new people have let their land go wild.
It used to be mown a kept neat, and the path through was kept well and maintained and people knew they were passing through a "garden". Now, with new people there, it's uncared for and left and horses and cyclists just carry on not realising.

Further along, the path goes though land belonging to people we know very well, but they've stopped complaining as it falls on deaf ears.

If we owned land along there, I'd erect barriers as as well as big hoardings proclaiming No Horses and No Cycling.


So that's an issue for the landowner then, if people are genuinely "not realising" (as opposed to they know full well but they're doing it anyway) then it's up to the landowner to rectify, if they actually care and from the sounds of things, they don't.

The RoW network (such as it is a "network") is a mix of historical usages, mapping errors, corrections, landowner rights and obviously cycling is at the bottom of that pile being the last one on the block in terms of history.
Bottom line is that the classification of a track / trail / path on the ground bears no relation to what it actually is. I've seen FP that are tarmac or gravel roads capable of taking a car with no erosion; BWs that are boggy muddy lines across a moor or a steep rocky trail that a horse would break a leg on; BOATs that require nothing short of full on winch-equipped 4x4 to drive along. I've seen maps and GPS confidently proclaiming that there is defined path yet when you get there it's featureless moorland and if you go to a working forest, you'll find trails and paths that no map or signpost shows because of the constantly changing nature of the place within the planting / felling cycle.

The classification is an archaic, outdated, outmoded system and it's probably worth noting that an awful lot of access rights came about through mass trespass in the first place.

It's not your right or responsibility to address it, it's the landowner's. Share and share alike. Be nice, say hi. Don't be a dick. Use which ever one of those rules fits.

pwa
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby pwa » 24 Jul 2020, 1:45pm

The status of a Public Right of Way is often determined by the historic rights, not what it could now be used for. Some Public Footpaths were initially recognised because whilst on private land, somebody had regularly been walking a route unchallenged for years. It could have been the postie or farm workers on their way to work. The fact that it was physically possible to ride a horse or drive a car along it was irrelevant. It was the historic freedoms accorded to members of the general public that counted.

ChrisButch
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby ChrisButch » 24 Jul 2020, 6:20pm


The RoW network (such as it is a "network") is a mix of historical usages, mapping errors, corrections, landowner rights and obviously cycling is at the bottom of that pile being the last one on the block in terms of history.
Bottom line is that the classification of a track / trail / path on the ground bears no relation to what it actually is. I've seen FP that are tarmac or gravel roads capable of taking a car with no erosion; BWs that are boggy muddy lines across a moor or a steep rocky trail that a horse would break a leg on; BOATs that require nothing short of full on winch-equipped 4x4 to drive along. I've seen maps and GPS confidently proclaiming that there is defined path yet when you get there it's featureless moorland and if you go to a working forest, you'll find trails and paths that no map or signpost shows because of the constantly changing nature of the place within the planting / felling cycle.

The classification is an archaic, outdated, outmoded system and it's probably worth noting that an awful lot of access rights came about through mass trespass in the first place.

To that catalogue of accidents could be added the failure of the responsible local authorities (in most cases County Councils) to discharge their statutory responsibility to complete the 'Definitive Map' of PRsOW in their area, which is the only statutory record. As a result many have been lost or are being lost by default. If, for instance, you look at one of the Cassini reprints of the OS 'six inch' series from around 1900, you will see many paths indicated which have subsequently been quietly closed by a landowner without challenge. I have a number almost on my doorstep.

Traction_man
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Location: Bangor NI

Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby Traction_man » 1 Aug 2020, 10:55am

For the historic OS six-inch maps, they're freely available online through the National Library of Scotland, for the whole of GB, at

https://maps.nls.uk/geo/explore/#zoom=5 ... yers=6&b=1

Cheers,

Keith

ChrisF
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby ChrisF » 2 Aug 2020, 1:33pm

Traction_man wrote:For the historic OS six-inch maps, they're freely available online through the National Library of Scotland, for the whole of GB, at
https://maps.nls.uk/geo/explore/#zoom=5 ... yers=6&b=1
Cheers,
Keith

Thanks Keith. Off-topic I know, but this is an amazing resource. My daughter has pointed out to me the 'spyglass' feature which enables you to compare present day with what it was like 120 years ago.
Chris F, Cornwall

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 2 Aug 2020, 7:37pm

Cycling isn’t the last to arrive in terms of history, that would be the motor car.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

lbomaak2
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby lbomaak2 » 2 Aug 2020, 10:59pm

It's a long time since I first noticed on the map that the villages of Great Wilne and Church Wilne were only connected by a footbridge over the river Derwent (the first bridge from its confluence with the Trent) and a few hundred metres of public footpath. Eventually I got around to visiting the villages today. Only two stiles on the footpath, although as I get older and weaker I find it more difficult to lift my bike over such obstacles. But I got help at one of the stiles, from one of a group of swimmers, mostly in wetsuits, who were jumping off the footbridge and swimming in the Derwent.

rareposter
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby rareposter » 4 Aug 2020, 9:36pm

@MickF - would you care to sign this petition?!

https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/321145

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Mick F
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby Mick F » 5 Aug 2020, 9:12am

No.

I'd rather sign a petition to make it a criminal offence to cycle/horse riding/motor vehicle/etc etc etc.
Allowing a pedal cycle on a public footpath ............. which by definition is a vehicle ............... is the thin end of the wedge.
Mick F. Cornwall

thirdcrank
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby thirdcrank » 5 Aug 2020, 9:38am

Mick F wrote:No.

I'd rather sign a petition to make it a criminal offence to cycle/horse riding/motor vehicle/etc etc etc.


To use a cliché that's Draconian.

ChrisF
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby ChrisF » 5 Aug 2020, 3:33pm

I'm largely on Mick F's side on this one. Regardless of whether it's a civil offence, criminal offence or no 'offence' at all, we cyclists have plenty of other places to cycle. Please let walkers have somewhere to wander where they won't come across cyclists, be they benign and careful or tearwaway MTBs. I'm sure most walkers are (outwardly) polite when they do come across riders on paths, but I wonder what it's doing for goodwill towards cyclists as a whole? We have enough enemies in the motoring lobby already.
CylingUK may be correct in trying to open up a few short paths where they are important links between dead-end bridleways etc. But this should be on a case-by-case basis.
Chris F, Cornwall

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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby rareposter » 5 Aug 2020, 5:02pm

Works perfectly fine in Scotland where the Freedom to Roam basically means that so long as users of the outdoors respect the interests of other people, care for the environment and take responsibility for their own actions, then more or less any trail is fair game. Exceptions around military land, private buildings and so on but the term "footpath" and "bridleway" are more or less meaningless.

There are permits in operation around some very heavily used areas (Loch Lomond for example where "wild camping" got out of hand; it wasn't "wild camping" at all, it was people from Glasgow driving up to the loch shore, having a massive party and then leaving litter everywhere) but generally, it works very well.

Yes, there are case by case exceptions but I'd much rather see a tending towards open access with exceptions against that rather than the other way around. For one thing it spreads people out more and reduces conflict and it also opens up far more route possibilities - there are plenty of situations where a BW changes to a FP for 200m and then back again which (technically) prevents use by horse riders and cyclists but the only reason its happened is because of some ancient land rights issue like a boundary change or a landowner or council failing to record it properly. On the ground itself, you'd never be able to tell the difference - same terrain, same trail.

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Mick F
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby Mick F » 5 Aug 2020, 7:09pm

thirdcrank wrote:
Mick F wrote:No.

I'd rather sign a petition to make it a criminal offence to cycle/horse riding/motor vehicle/etc etc etc.


To use a cliché that's Draconian.
That's me.
Black or white.
Against the law, or it's not.
One, or the other.
Disallow it, or allow it.

No grey areas.
Mick F. Cornwall

philvantwo
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Re: Public Footpaths - cycling?

Postby philvantwo » 5 Aug 2020, 9:54pm

I've been riding my mountain bike round here over the fields for the past 10 years, bridleways, footpaths and nobody's ever said anything to me about using my bike!
Another bee in mick F's bonnet by the sounds of it!!
:lol: :lol: :lol: