foot paths – what's the worst that could happen?

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  • foot paths – what's the worst that could happen?
  • uplink
    Member

    Legally can I ride them?

    Probably not

    If not whats the worst that could happen?

    The landowner could go postal and start blasting away with his shotgun 😀

    Who could stop me?

    see above

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    ah…I was thinking the paths where some kind of right of ways? (owned buy…er…the council/goverment)? 😳

    You need to read the rules of cheekytrails.

    Although you might want to read the proper rules on rights of way first.

    uplink
    Member

    ah…I was thinking the paths where some kind of right of ways? (owned buy…er…the council/goverment)?

    there are some but most will be owned privately

    TBH – just don’t be too obvious & you’ll be OK [usually]

    mansonsoul
    Member

    Just do it: nothing will happen, no one will stop you, and you won’t damage or destroy anything a walker wouldn’t.

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    I think alot of it depends on local people.

    I live on the East Pennines (Bradford) and folk here do not appear to mind you riding on footpaths.

    However when I live in Sheffield you got the distinct impression that riding on footpaths was frowned upon.

    I guess part of the distinction is whether your in a National Park or not..

    I’ve once had a shotgun pointed at me, but that was apparently because I had strayed on to private land.

    Riding on footpaths is a civil (?) offence.

    But only if you get caught.

    Premier Icon MSP
    Subscriber

    I would avoid ones with specific no cycling signs though, if there is a problem in the area with “mountain bikers gone bad” then you will likely just add to any animosity that exists with other groups of users.

    mansonsoul
    Member

    What do all these shotgun weilding idiots really think they are going to do with their shotgun when they point it at some rider or walker?

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    can someone pull a shot gun on you?

    after the initial “shit your pants” I would want to kill someone who pointed a gun at me!

    Premier Icon MSP
    Subscriber

    mansonsoul – Member

    What do all these shotgun weilding idiots really think they are going to do with their shotgun when they point it at some rider or walker?
    Shoot them perhaps?

    Although I expect that its more likely that the person claiming to have a shotgun pointed at them are talking out of their a…..

    TheBrick
    Member

    I believe that technically if you cycle on a footpath you are trespassing, but when walking you have the right of way and so are not trespassing. So there exists the situation where you can push you bike along a footpath and every thing is ok, but then you swing your leg over the bike and start cycling and you are now trespassing.

    Trespassing is a civil matter and land owners can sue for damages and ask you to leave. I don’t know how much force they are allowed to use while asking you.

    bigyinn
    Member

    If a biker rides a footpath and no one see’s them, are they breaking the law?

    globalti
    Member

    My belief is that you simply don’t have the right to cycle on a footpath. Which is not the same as being prohibited.

    hilldodger
    Member

    whats the worst that could happen?…

    ….You could hear the sound of banjos 😯

    As far as I know, it’s not a criminal offence to ride footpaths and only the landowner or their representative can offer you any legal objection.
    I think the ‘worst’ that can happen under the legal system is that you may be found guilty of a civil offence and be made to pay some trivial amount of ‘damages’

    However, if you start getting leery with anyone ‘official’, you’re more than likely to end up in more serious bother…

    I guess the answer is how much do you respect the law? It’s not really about who you might meet, landowners like to think they own the footpaths but the clue is in the title, they are Public Footpaths and maintained as such by the council on our behalf. If there are proper finger posts at either end they are almost certainly footpaths and illegal to ride a bike or horse on, if you aren’t sure, the Definitive Maps showing exactly their status are available from county archives wherever they are held, usually County Hall, or several Counties have posted copies online. The evidence of a path on an OS Map is no guarantee of its legal status.

    Premier Icon Lifer
    Subscriber
    Premier Icon ir_bandito
    Subscriber

    there exists the situation where you can push you bike along a footpath and every thing is ok, but then you swing your leg over the bike and start cycling and you are now trespassing.

    Actually, you’re not even allowed to push your bike along. You have to carry it. Same goes for a horse too!

    And the worse that could happen is the landowner could press charges for Trespass.

    nbt
    Member

    Actually, you’re not even allowed to push your bike along. You have to carry it. Same goes for a horse too!

    Show the rules, please? That’s not my understanding.

    Premier Icon ir_bandito
    Subscriber

    they are Public Footpaths and maintained as such by the council on our behalf

    They are public rights of way, sometimes over private land.
    They are the landowner’s responsibilty, be it the farmer or the council.
    Hence problems with farmers ploughing fields with paths that cross them, or blocking up gateways/stiles etc.

    bigyinn
    Member

    I take the view that if im discreet and polite then I’ll ride pretty much anywhere I damn well like.
    There will always be people out there who will resent your presence, legal or not, wherever you are.
    Obviously a bit of common sense should be applied in avoiding busier paths at busy times etc.

    Premier Icon ir_bandito
    Subscriber

    nbt – I’ll see if I can find it.

    Found this though:
    A public bridleway is a way over which the public have the following, but no other rights:

    to travel on foot and
    to travel on horseback or leading a horse, with or without a right to drive animals of any description along the way.
    Note that although Section 30 of the Countryside Act 1968 permits the riding of bicycles on public bridleways, the act says that it “shall not create any obligation to facilitate the use of the bridleway by cyclists”.

    from Wikipedia

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    what nbt said – I thought it had recently been establ;ished that a pushed bicycle was a ‘natural accomapniment to walking’ or somesuch and it was thus ok to do it?

    Some bloke got done for getting off his bike and pushing it across a set of red traffic lights and appealed?

    Edit:

    “shall not create any obligation to facilitate the use of the bridleway by cyclists”.

    that just means you can’t force the landowner to stop it getting all boggy in winter.

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    how is someone going to press charges when then dont know who you are and cannot restrain you? 😛

    Premier Icon R.lepecha
    Subscriber

    how is someone going to press charges when then dont know who you are and cannot restrain you?

    If some one starts ranting at you, ride faster 🙂
    Although I’ve never been ranted at. Oh maybe once, though that wasn’t a footpath.I was doing a little trail maintenance and they didn’t like it.

    Premier Icon ir_bandito
    Subscriber

    Here we go:

    What is the difference between a public right of way and a footpath?

    A ‘Public right of way’ is a collective term for a right of passage over private land. They are classified into three categories:

    1.A public footpath is a public way on foot only, with or without the normal accompaniments of a pedestrian (e.g. a dog or pram).

    2.A public bridleway carries the same rights, plus the right to ride or lead a horse; or ride a bicycle

    A good lawer could point out that you’re not even allowed to lead a horse on a footpath, therefore equating it to bikes, you can’t wheel a bike on a footpath.

    Carefully, politely and scrupulously ride on Public Footpaths. Ignore ranting ramblers. If the landowner stops you, politely obey their instructions and leave. You cannot be prosecuted.

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    ok has the land owner got the right to point a shotgun at you?

    TheBrick
    Member

    Actually, you’re not even allowed to push your bike along. You have to carry it. Same goes for a horse too!

    I think this is an urban legend.

    There is case where by someone was pushing a bike over a crossing and they were deemed to be a pedestrian. Although this was not a case on a public footpath, it was on a crossing starting on a footway (i.e. what we think of as a pavement beside the road which is illegal to cycle on) the case clearly establishes that if pushing a bike you are a pedestrian.

    Found it.

    http://www.bikeforall.net/content/cycling_and_the_law.php

    “In my judgment a person who is walking across a pedestrian crossing pushing a bicycle, having started on the pavement on one side on her feet and not on the bicycle, and going across pushing the bicycle with both feet on the ground so to speak is clearly a ‘foot passenger’.

    Keva
    Member

    couple of weeks ago…

    biffy bloke
    do you realise the law of the land says you can’t ride your bike along here

    me
    really ? /continues riding. end of.

    Kev

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    nice story!

    hilldodger
    Member

    sefton – Member
    ok has the land owner got the right to point a shotgun at you?

    Almost certainly not, but if I faced an armed stroppy landowner I’d follow buzz’s advice rather than TJ them…

    Premier Icon miketually
    Subscriber

    Actually, you’re not even allowed to push your bike along. You have to carry it.

    Someone drove their car into someone pushing their bike across a pedestrian crossing. The driver argued that the ‘cyclist’ shouldn’t have been on the pedestrian crossing. The judge ruled that they weren’t a cyclist but a pedestrian.

    So, if you push a bike, you’re still a pedestrian.

    So, you have a legal right to pass and repass along a public footpath while pushing a bike.

    Premier Icon ir_bandito
    Subscriber

    Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem riding cheeky trails, but its always worth knowing the law in case you get challenged.

    thebrick, the problem with that case is its pedestrain crossing, not a footpath through someone’s garden…
    (and was the cyclist pushing on the pavement first?)

    Premier Icon Daffy
    Subscriber

    ok has the land owner got the right to point a shotgun at you?

    Categorically, NO!

    Premier Icon sefton
    Subscriber

    I live on the West Pennine moors. There’s hardly any Bridleways but there’s hundreds of ridable footpaths (some with no cycling signs). 😥

    I ride most of theses paths and dont consider myself a problem as I ride these with respect to the land and others that may be walking on the paths.

    Legally can I ride them?

    If not whats the worst that could happen?

    Who could stop me?

    What’s the position if there are byelaws for the area in question and those byelaws make no mention of prohibiting bicycles?

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    The worst that can happen?

    1) You’ll get scowled at by walkers
    2) You’ll get muttered at by walkers
    3) You’ll get shouted at by walkers
    4) You’ll be physically confronted by walkers
    5) You’ll drive yet another wedge between the walking and biking communities. Although they mostly wish us all dead anyway so it’s hardly going to make matters worse.

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