The Peak Park decided on 16 September to put a permanent TRO on Washgate excluding all types of motor vehicle. However, some respondents to the TRO consultation asked for an exemption for ‘historic’ motor vehicle trials. ‘Historic’ doesn’t mean vintage vehicles. It means the trials have been run for many years. Powerful modern motor bikes take part. The Peak Park is doing a new consultation about whether there should be exemptions. Our view is that that there should be no blanket exemption for any trial but that the wording of the TRO could permit trials with the consent of the Authority. This would give the Peak Park control over the number and frequency of trials and it would allow it to set conditions for any trial, for example the maximum numberof participants and an obligation to repair any damage done to the surface, walls, verges of Washgate. You can take part in the consultation online.
The Peak Park is consulting the public on a Traffic Regulation Order to stop motor vehicles using Derby Lane, Monyash. The details and an online response form are on the Peak Park website. Click’read more’for the link.The closing date is 10 June. Please take part and help make sure this almost unspoiled route is saved from destruction from motor bikes and 4x4s.
The Peak Park is consulting on a Traffic Regulation Order banning motor vehicles from Washgate, a lane on the Derbs-Staffs border. Details of the
consultation are on the Peak Park website. The lane is being heavily used by 4x4s and motor bikes. Please take part in the consultation.
Following a public inquiry into a BOAT claim on the route between Upperdale and the hamlet ofBrushfield, the Planning Inspectorate has rejected the BOAT claim on the route and decidedit is a bridleway. There may be objections from offroaders which could trigger a second inquiry, so it is not all over yet.
Martins Lane and Stockmoor Lane in Wingerworth are now bridleways. Motor vehicle rights both lanes were claimed by the Trail Riders Fellowship, the motor biking lobby, but their claimshave failed. PDGLA researches showed there were no historic public vehicle rights of way on either lane. At the same time, local residents, walkers and horse riders who had known the lane for many years were able to disprove claims made by motor bikers that they had used the lane for the 20 year period necessary under highway law to establish motor vehicle rights. Well done Wingerworth!
A Peak Park Ranger who saw motor vehicles illegally using Long Causeway, in breach ofthe Traffic Regulation Order banning all motor vehicles from the route, has been assaulted by one of the drivers. The Ranger was able to make a note of the registration number and reported the incident to the Police. He was assisted by local runners who had confrontedthe vehicles before the assault and by a mountain biker who had also taken photographs on her mobile phone. We arepleased to report that he was not badly hurt. We hope there will be a prosecution.
The Peak Park Authority has decided to consult on a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) for Washgate. This is an old pack horse route crossing the Derbyshire/Staffordshire border. We will letyou know when the public stage of the consultation process is announced. Meanwhile we will be arguing for a permanent TRO excluding motor vehicles at all times.
BBC Countryfile has been filming inDerbyshire and will broadcast an item on offroading on 12 April. They filmed the Brushfield route, which starts at Upperdale, near Monsal Head. They also filmed in Wiltshire, which has more miles of Byway of Open to All Traffic than any other county.
The Peak Park is to consult on two furtherTraffic Regulation Orders (TROs). These will be for Washgate, which straddles the Derbyshire/Staffordshire border, and Derby Lane, Monyash. We will let you know when the public consultation starts. The TROs already in place are working well. There is some illegal use, which the Police are tryingto deal with.
The work we have been doing over the last 18 months on theDeregulation Bill has paid off. We have not got the Bill amended to protect green lanes (we never expected to achieve this). But the tactic of repeatedly tabling an amendment calling for government action, and threatening to interfere with the smooth passage of the Bill by dividing the House if we did not get it, has worked. New legislation to protect green lanes is back on the political agenda.
The government has a) acknowledged that there is a problem, b) has accepted that something must be done about it, c) has agreed to set up a motor vehicles working group to advise it, and d) has said there will be full public consultation after the group has reported.
The group will be set up ‘on completion of the passage of the Bill’. We take this to mean early this year. We pressed for this, for the group to have a limited life (18 months has been agreed), to be free to produce majority and minority reports if necessary rather than having to reach a consensus, and to include representation from the National Parks, the Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the National Trails.
The working group will have an independent Chair and a secretariat organised by Defra and Natural England, ‘will contain a balance of interests across all sectors’, ‘representatives of users of rights of way’, will set its own terms of reference, and ‘will be expected to look at all the issues in the round and include assessments any economic and social benefits of the current use of unsealed roads as well as an assessment of costs and burdens’.
We have been working with the Green Lanes Protection Group (GLPG) on the Bill. PDGLA is a member of GLPG and we expect GLPG to be represented on the working group.