Peak & Northern Footpaths Society (est.1894)

Managing the “Green Lanes” Network in Peak District National Park

John Harker, Area Officer

This article is from Signpost 57, Summer 2018

Since 2007, National Park Authorities (NPAs) have had statutory powers to impose Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) on any route that is considered to be at risk from damage, or is being damaged, by recreational mechanically propelled vehicles (MPVs), frequently called “off-roaders”.

The Peak District NPA has had a strategy for managing this issue since 2012 and appointed a part-time temporary officer to implement it in 2013, who became permanent in 2017. A yearly report is presented to members of the NPA’s Audit, Resources and Performance Committee; this is a link to the latest one: https://democracy.peakdistrict.gov.uk/mgAi.aspx?ID=8005#mgDocuments . A brief article like this cannot do justice to such a complex subject, but the Society is heavily engaged in the process of trying to influence outcomes through its membership of the Peak District Green Lanes Alliance (PDGLA). Society officers also respond to individual consultations about potential TROs. Most recently, to one about the unclassified route through Wetton Hills in the Staffordshire Peak and to a Derbyshire County Council one for Byway Open To All Traffic (BOAT) 15 linking Stoney Middleton and Eyam in Derbyshire Dales. The Society has even resorted to legal proceedings when thought necessary by the Courts & Inquiries Committee. Rhoda Barnett was authorised to serve notice under section 56 of the Highways Act 1980 on Derbyshire County Council for an out of repair surface on Ballidon BOAT 11, known as Gallowlow Lane and Minnin- glow Lane. The outcome is that the officer dealing with this case has informed Rhoda that a repair plan is going to be implemented as a high priority, as soon as resources permit. Ideally, we want a permanent TRO imposing, but this is not being considered as yet. There is evidence from the NPA’s logging of numbers of vehicles using the route that the voluntary code of practice in place has led to a reduction in use by MPVs by around 40%. Is this enough? Will any repair work done simply be wasted by the further damage caused?

Society members can help by responding themselves to such consultations. Numbers matter, and the more walkers who respond by supporting the idea of a permanent TRO on such routes the bet- ter. Rest assured, the MPV lobby will be urging its members to do the same against such bans and they are very effective in getting their supporters out in numbers.


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Page title:Managing the “Green Lanes” Network in Peak District National Park
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