Viewing 30 posts - 41 through 70 (of 70 total)
  • The Trespasser’s Companion – A field guide to reclaiming what is already ours
  • Premier Icon Spin
    Free Member

    I’m not suggesting anyone read this full thread but it might be interesting to scan it to see just how deeply tribal this issue is and just how resistant some individuals and groups are to the idea of wider access rights.

    If you do choose to click on it prepare yourself for all the tired old tropes about mountain bikers.

    https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/biking/petition_to_turn_all_prows_into_bridlewaysrestricted_byways-746635

    Premier Icon jonba
    Free Member

    It’s interesting the comments about horse riders. Like any group there are good and bad people. The BHF are actively campaigning to stop the loss of bridleways and get more paths designated as such.

    https://www.bhs.org.uk/our-work/access/campaigns/2026

    Premier Icon jonba
    Free Member

    I think a lot depends on where you are. In Northumberland you never see anybody so rarely have an issue. I have a liberal approach to rights of way on the bike or on foot*. I occasionally get stopped only once or twice have I diverted from my plan. Maybe once or twice I’ve had a bit of verbal but never any physical threats. Worst culprits are the shooting estates who don’t like you riding on the gravel roads they’ve build over the moors?

    *Ground condition more than lines on a map.

    Premier Icon dissonance
    Full Member

    Worst culprits are the shooting estates who don’t like you riding on the gravel roads they’ve build over the moors?

    In fairness having lots of people using those roads does increase the chance they will be spotted carrying out wildlife crimes especially killing raptors.

    Premier Icon northernsoul
    Free Member

    The BHF are actively campaigning to stop the loss of bridleways and get more paths designated as such.

    Very much agree with this – cyclists and horse riders usually have very similar access goals. Most of the improved access rights near me (e.g. the restricted byway across Wolsingham South Moor past Pawlaw Pike) have been the result of BHF or related campaigns.

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    > with clear signs saying no cycling is awful. I really don’t know the solution

    The solution is obvious, remove the signs.


    @thegeneralist
    🤣

    A fair response given some of the mental stuff being said.

    > What you seem to want is outdoors anarchy that allows people the freedom to explore the limits of the harm they can cause to other ROW users as well as indulging themselves.

    🦇💩

    Premier Icon seadog101
    Full Member

    Fortunately, never seem to get any trouble around where I am (County Durham moorland). Access is good and lots to bike on totally legally without having to venture onto FP’s too often.

    I was once a bit lost and on a Gravel track that was designated FP. A farmer on a Quad came along, I politely asked if I was alright carrying on to where I was going. He, surprisingly, said if he was using a quad on it, then why should I have to push my bike.

    The worse example I have come across was a guy I worked with who had “come into a bit of land” lets say. It was criss-crossed with PROW mostly FP. It was a bit a lovely spot and people often stopped for a sit down, take photos, picnic. He would go out of his way to berate them, while holding a shotgun (but open and clearly unloaded, I’ll add), and get them to move on as it was a ‘Footpath, for walking upon, and going to somewhere else!’. Tosser.

    Premier Icon Spin
    Free Member

    What you seem to want is outdoors anarchy that allows people the freedom to explore the limits of the harm they can cause to other ROW users as well as indulging themselves.

    There was a fair amount of frothing on that thread but that was probably peak froth. 😀

    Premier Icon Davesport
    Full Member

    The authors previous Trespass book despite the flowery bits was an interesting read. Being from Scotland the land reform act has made access much simpler for walkers, cyclists, paddlers etc. One of my few forays south of the border ended in my wife & I being asked to leave a pretty substantial forest by an irate land owner as we were trespassing on his land. There were Landrover tracks everywhere in this place & I could hear his van bombing round but didn’t realise he was actually looking for us. He tried to block my exit after I had already acknowledged that we had made a mistake and agreed to leave via the quickest route. It’s a travesty that the majority of the open land in England according to the authors opinion is legally off limits without specific permission. Is access south of the border as bad as he portrays in his book?

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    There was a fair amount of frothing on that thread but that was probably peak froth. 😀

    Agreed. Sadly, hysterical as it is it seems to capture the “anti” mindset perfectly. I think these people honestly believe Scotland is as big as the Northern Territory with a similarly uniform population density. They also seem to think we can only access a small amount of public land with the rest being private shooting estates. Where do they get fed this shit, it’s 2022 FFS?

    Premier Icon thegeneralist
    Full Member

    A fair response given some of the mental stuff being said.

    Eek. I’ve been tracked cross forum. 🙂 I have to admit that in the end I just wanted to wind them up on UKC. As people have said, you’ve got nochance of changing hardset minds.

    I recall some cretinous **** berating my wife and I for taking our 7 & 9 year old kids on a footpath instead of the deadly A road between Chapel Stile and Coniston.
    The ironic thing was that I’d just asked the kids to be extra slow, polite and careful as they passed him. He clearly took that as a sign of weakness and so got stuck in. Luckily I remembered someone’s awesome advice from here to keep saying ” I know, it’s ridiculous” at key points in the conversation. It works absolutely brilliantly. You go around a standard debate circle with them covering the rights and wrongs of it all. Sooner or later the rambler will run out of arguments and say ” but its a footpath, you’re not allowed”.
    Give them response A above, and watch them get confused. They’ll then go back to arguing that they don’t mean that and that you shouldn’t be there for x,y,z reason. You can easily refute most or all those arguments and they’ll end up bellowing at you:
    “YOU’RE NOT ALLOWED HERE. IT’S A FOOTPATH.”
    At which point you repeat response A in a totally 100% agreement type of way implying a kinship with the ramblers at the absurdity of it being designated a footpath and thus not allowed.
    And so on, round and round and round.

    Bloody excellent response if you are approached and want to have a bit of fun.

    You can even do your best Cybil Fawlty impression.

    ” I knowwww. Yes, I knkwww”

    Premier Icon Pauly
    Free Member

    This issue has really been getting my goat for a while now, but what can we do about it? How can we get the access laws changed in England to be more like Scotland?
    I’m keen to get more involved in changing things but not sure where to start.

    Premier Icon Spin
    Free Member

    How can we get the access laws changed in England to be more like Scotland?

    I don’t think you can, too many vested interests and too many people and organisations who will argue against change.

    Premier Icon stwhannah
    Full Member

    @Pauly start with this book, it’s full of action points! Also follow Right To Roam, who are organising various mass trespass events.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    He would go out of his way to berate them, while holding a shotgun (but open and clearly unloaded, I’ll add), and get them to move on as it was a ‘Footpath, for walking upon, and going to somewhere else!’. Tosser.

    I think the wording on the Open Spaces Society website is that someone using a RoW is entitled to do anything ancillary to their journey while on that RoW. They use the examples of being entitled to stop for a sandwich if needed, or to compose a watercolour of a nice landscape. 😀

    Premier Icon bigyan
    Free Member

    What happens in England regarding “walking” trespass?

    Are people actually prosecuted these days?

    Premier Icon colournoise
    Full Member

    Can’t be prosecuted for (non-aggravated) trespass as it’s a civil offense rather than a criminal one.

    Any talk about threatening behaviour is also a non-starter – IIRC landowners actually have a legal responsibility to make sure trespassers are safe on their property?

    Premier Icon thecrookofdevon
    Free Member

    I am currently reading the first book and I think it is brilliant. I don’t think it is ‘hippy’ or airy fairy it is intensely political. The key point seems to be that land was essentially stolen from people who had common grazing over hundreds of years. Numerous enclosure acts cut off people from the land. The author is unashamedly political but not in no way overly whispy. In my opinion it is essential reading.
    Living in Scotland we can be a bit smug about this but despite having the right of responsible access which we got in 2003, nothing has been done about land reform since which for me is one of the SNP’s biggest failings.

    Premier Icon specialisthoprocker
    Free Member

    His first book is the best book I’ve read in years. Fabulous. Not hippy, unless you are full-gammon.

    I found myself referring to it the other day when explaining to a friend the difference between ‘trespass’ and ‘aggravated trespass’. An the very fact that we are riding on private land could be taken as ‘intimidation’ and therefore the criminal offence of ‘aggravated trespass’.

    Cut and paste job below from Hayes, Nick. The Book of Trespass (pp. 19-20). Bloomsbury Publishing.

    The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 introduced criteria to arrest people for the newly invented crime of ‘aggravated trespass’.

    The lawyers define ‘aggravated’ in their own breezy way as ‘any circumstance attending the commission of a crime or tort which increases its guilt or enormity or adds to its injurious consequences’. A hidden knife would be aggravated assault; and from 1994, a hidden intention had the same effect. Section 61 of the Act legislated that a police officer could remove two or more people from any private land, if they have met for a common purpose. That’s for the ramblers. Section 63 criminalises any gathering of twenty people or more who meet to dance to amplified music. That’s for the ravers. Section 68 criminalises the intimidation, deterrence, obstruction and disruption of lawful activities on land, which turns all protest on land not owned by the protesters into an illegal activity.

    At the time, this was primarily to restrict the hunt saboteurs, but is used in the vast majority of protests of all flavours, from fracking, to animal rights, to war. Your right to protest is secured by Articles 10 and 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights, but for the last twenty years, if you do it anywhere but your back garden or a highway, you can be arrested and sent to jail.

    On top of this, since 2014, a common ruling has inserted the phrase ‘additional conduct’. If you are trespassing on land and engaging in any additional conduct, literally anything, it can now be classed as intimidation. In the words of the Crown Prosecution website: There is no requirement that the additional conduct should itself be a crime, so activities such as playing a musical instrument or taking a photograph could fall within anything. What limits the scope of anything is the intention that must accompany it: the intention to obstruct, disrupt or deter by intimidating. In short, if you are doing something that is not illegal (photography, dancing, playing the flute), while doing something that is not criminal (trespassing) you can be automatically arrested, and liable to six months in prison and a level-four fine. In this equation, two rights combine and somehow make a wrong.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    ^^ That’s interesting. We’ve got a local holiday cottage owner who has recently put up signs on his gates stating that cyclists must dismount when using the bridleway which goes along his driveway, through the old farmyard and out onto the road. I jokingly suggested that a bunch of cyclists could make a hell of a noise all dismounting and getting through gates in the middle of the night, with all those cleats, bells, phones ringing, etc. That, in itself, could be a criminal offence! Wow, what a country.

    Premier Icon jeffl
    Full Member

    @IdleJon

    As it’s a bridelway you have every right NOT to dismount and carry on riding through. What’s his rationale for making people dismount?

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Full Member

    It’s being courteous. Many years ago when horse-riding at a particular place, it was form to dismount and walk the horse through the grounds of the property. Can’t remember if there was a sign requesting this though. Enjoying this thread anyway.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    As it’s a bridelway you have every right NOT to dismount and carry on riding through. What’s his rationale for making people dismount?

    Yeah, I know that. I can’t imagine it’s a very rational rationale (!) when he doesn’t ask horse riders to dismount, or try to stop cars from using the bridleway/driveway. (It’s also not a particularly busy bridleway from a cycling PoV, but could be! 😀 ) I’ll probably take a ride over there on the weekend, take some pics to put on social media, and contact the authorities, plus maybe contact the landowner saying that it’s an actual criminal offence to obstruct a RoW. We’ll see.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    It’s being courteous. Many years ago when horse-riding at a particular place, it was form to dismount and walk the horse through the grounds of the property.

    Genuine question – what difference does it make being on the horse or not?

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Full Member

    Worth engaging with him in the first instance and understand the reasons for him putting up a sign. Much better to do that instead of being confrontational. Be an ambassador for mountain biking instead.

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Full Member

    Genuine question – what difference does it make being on the horse or not?

    Would assume that it’s less frightening for any people or pets. Don’t forget that horses can be incredibly skittish at times and jump at the slightest sound.

    Premier Icon Pauly
    Free Member

    @stwhannah – I’ll get it ordered and report back!

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Full Member

    Don’t forget that horses can be incredibly skittish at times and jump at the slightest sound.

    Ah yes, makes sense.

    Worth engaging with him in the first instance and understand the reasons for him putting up a sign. Much better to do that instead of being confrontational

    Holiday cottages. I’m not knocking around the doors asking to see the owner. (Happy to have a conversation if I bump into him, though. Apparently when this happened to one of our riders last week, it wasn’t the friendliest conversation.)

    Premier Icon cloggy
    Full Member

    The routes were never “thought out”. They were surveyed on something like a Parish by Parish basis circa 1950, by different people who had to follow such data as Inclosure Awards and Tithe maps, [as well as usage] which were themselves drawn up on a Parish by Parish basis, often decades apart and from the Georgian and Victorian eras. Hence the patchwork quilt.

    Premier Icon cloggy
    Full Member

    Vote Labour. All the major reforms have come under them.

Viewing 30 posts - 41 through 70 (of 70 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

Thanks for popping by - why not stay a while?IT'S FREE

Sign up as a Singletrack Member and you can leave comments on stories, use the classified ads, and post in our forums, do quizzes and more.

Join us, join in, it’s free, and fun.