I was thwarted a few weeks ago on one of my regular local walks by a completely obstructed path.
Well today I followed the same route to see if anything had improved.
I’m not sure if the local authority or the farmer have got round to doing anything but I’m pleased to find the way open. I suspect some local walker/activist, I know a few, has cleared the way – well done. I think that in future with financial constraints placed on local authorities and the ever increasing pressure put on rural societies that we will all have to take things into our own hands to preserve the footpath network.
I continued on my way back to Longridge on unobstructed and for the most part signed rights of way.
The other side of the fence looks a bit jungly? A while ago I bought a pair of wire cutters, not much bigger or heavier than a good pair of pliers, and they definitely cut through barbed wire. They would certainly be ok to take on day walks when weight is less important. I think one would need to be careful about using them and absolutely certain that you had found a blockage on a public right of way. It looks as though whoever has just cut the wire – there has been no attempt to provide a stile or formal access other than a stride over.
The law says you can remove an obstruction provided that you are a bona fide traveller on the path and have not gone out for the specific purpose of moving the obstruction, and that you remove only as much as is necessary to get through. If you can easily go round the obstruction without causing any damage, then you should do so and then report the obstruction to the highway authority.
The site of the Public Right of Way in this case is accurate and there is a path on the othr side. In fact paths coming from opposite directions are clearly signed. It looks a jungle mainly because access has been limited presumably for a few weeks.
I reported it nearly two months ago so perhaps the farmer has taken temporary measures. Ill check again in a few weeks to see if a stile appears.
Thanks for that. A bit of law I didn’t know about. That means I could proceed with a clear conscience with my cutters if needs be.
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