John Wilkinson, IMBA UK’s Executive Officer has just sent out the latest IMBA update. In it, he states that Rupps (Roads used as Public Paths) now no longer exist, and have been re categorised en masse as Restricted Byways which can only be used by walkers cyclists and equestrians. IMBA has been concerned for some time that the regulations did not appear to prevent ploughing – but’s Defra has now told us that these routes continue to be proper carriageways – and can’t be ploughed. Good news for the East Anglian riders then…
Slightly worrying is the fact that the Discovering Lost Ways Review isn’t really going anywhere. This is the project which was introduced as part of the Crow Act 2000 as a sop to landowners keen to prevent new bridleways being established over their land. TheÂ idea is that all such Lost Ways will be in place by 2025 after which no new routes can be established. Seven years later, and with the clock ticking, progress has progressed at a snails pace, a Natural England Report notes that to date only Cheshire is close to completing the research phase.
Next on the list is Shropshire, where work is already underway, so rapid progress into other counties does not appear to be likely. We should all be concerned about the slow pace of this project â€“ so a note to your MP emphasising the importance of this to cyclists and others is well worth considering.
Finally 34 miles network of mountain bike trails is now ready to ride in the 8,600-acre Dalby Forest near Pickering in the North York Moors. Built with Â£141,000 from the European Union by local trailbuilding club SingletrAction working with the Forestry Commission, the Â£400k network is now the most extensive in the UK to be found outside of Wales or Scotland and could become part ofÂ the training facilities for mountain biking events at the 2012 Olympics.
2 thoughts on “News from IMBA”
Good call. Lancashire has plenty of footpaths that were obviously bridleways until the landowners decided not to let folk on them when the current system was introduced in the 50’s. At the moment – and as a landowner itself which doesn’t want to open up new routes – the County Council make life harder not easier for anyone wanting an upgrade. In the meantime some of us continue to tresspass covertly. The BogTrotters on the other hand…
Yeah it sucks big time. The problem is doing something about these tracks whioch are currently cheeky trails to make them legitimate. I am not sure that a note to MPs is really enough. It appears that a pressure group might be the best bet.