Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YOGAZ to 80360 or send an email»
New plans for rights of way
8:30am Wednesday 13th June 2012 in Farming news
NEW proposals to modernise the process of recording rights of way have been unveiled by environment minister Richard Benyon.
Developed in consultation with groups such as the Ramblers and Country Land and Business Association, they are expected to cut the time taken to record a right of way by as much as several years, so that routes set to be lost in 2026 can be preserved.
All unrecorded footpaths and bridleways created before 1949 cannot be recorded after January 1, 2026. This ‘cut off’ date by which to claim these historical rights of way was set in the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000.
As well as making it easier for walkers, horse riders and cyclists to protect unrecorded rights of way, the proposed system is expected to save almost £20 million a year by cutting needless bureaucracy.
No changes are being made to the protections for rights of way; rather, proposals have been made to make the process of recording or changing them more efficient.
Landowners’ applications to move a right of way will continue to be approved only if they do not affect the public’s enjoyment of it, in which case it will be more straightforward for landowners to see them through.
Under these new plans, paths and trails that are used by the public will be easier to protect, while redundant routes and unsubstantiated rights of way claims will be prevented from getting in the way of farming and business interests.
Meanwhile, a £2million grant fund has opened for applications from local communities to improve access to rural areas in ways that will grow the regional economy.
Local volunteer groups are invited to bid for funding to create new rights of way or increase the accessibility of existing ones.