David Hurrell, Chairman
This article is from Signpost 57, Summer 2018
Spring this year has been the usual mixture of warm and cold days, before the weather can decide that summer is not too far away. However, this year has seen some of the most marked contrasts that I can remember. Whatever the weather, we must accept and make the most of what is being given to us to enjoy. Spring can be a wonderful time with all the contrasts that new growth and flowers can bring. Summer will soon be with us, even though not everyone wishes for those warm dry days, when an invigorating walk can be something of an effort in the lunch time sunshine.
Peak & Northern Footpaths Society now has a few more powers to help with the work of keeping footpaths open and in good order for public use. The Managing Committee will carefully look at all items being considered, evaluating cost and value. Only items that are beneficial for the walking public will be taken forward and careful control will be kept on costs. We shall be establishing a sub-committee to look at schemes that have been put forward, to see if they are suitable for further investigation, and to submit these to the Trustees for their approval. We shall keep you informed of the schemes we are looking at and approving.
The Highway Authority must agree to take responsibility for the maintenance of any agreed structures.
The work that the Society has always done will go on as before, with action being taken against Local Authorities who do not keep paths in good order. To stay still would be a recipe for the Society to slip backwards, and not take account of changes in the way that Local Authorities are changing in their approach to Public Services.
Our current Constitution gives each of us the right to obtain the name and address of each PNFS member for communications purposes. Peak & Northern Footpaths Society takes seriously the confidentiality of its members, and no information is ever passed to other organisations other than what is required by law. With the current changes to legislation under the Data Privacy Law, from 25th May 2018, we shall not be allowed to make available name and addresses for the information of other members. Care will need to be taken about how, for instance, Footpath Inspector information is stored and handled, because there needs to be effective communications within the Society. This will mean that item 6(4) of the Constitution will read; ‘The Managing Committee must keep a register of names and addresses of the members’, the latter part of the sentence previously in existence no longer being applicable.
The Society is now conducting a further trial on the digitisation of historical records kept at Taylor House. David Gosling has done a large amount of work on this project, and a sample of Cheshire East data has now been collected for scanning. Great care is needed to ensure that the records are held in such a way as to provide easy access, allowing anyone to check what has happened in the past.
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