/ Peak District Hypocrisy: protecting the character of the Peak?

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ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013

..... by covering it in Tarmac Scalpings.

Amazing joined up thinking between PDNP & DCC:

Wigley Lane
http://www.v-publishing.co.uk/blog/2013-10-07---the-story-of-wigley-lane.html

Threads on Ride Sheffield
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Ride.Sheffield1/

The List of Doom:
http://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/looking-after/vehicles/priorityroutes


And as John Horscroft says, The 'Highways Act' is an NOT an acceptable justification for the nature/approach to these 'maintenance' works.
Chris the Tall - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
Been meaning to start a thread about this

Great work by John C - uncovering the fact that in a time of austerity a single complaint could lead to £60,000 worth of "work" being undertaken. Work that actually involved covering a natural surface with imported materials and making it more dangerous.
balmybaldwin - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:

Having riden in the peak for the first time in a while a few weeks ago, I was shocked at how widespread this practise is. Stanage Causway is reduced to a 100m of interesting track, the rest is just boring gravel. Clough lane has been done as well (near winster/Darley Dale) in exactly the same way as Wigley Lane.

We followed a well established MTB route from one of the Guides starting from Fox House, heading towards Sheffield, and then back via Stanage Causeway, Hathersage etc. This was described as a challenging route in the guide, but frankly it was the dullest route I've ever ridden, with miles and miles of sanitised tracks. I certainly have no real intention to head back in a hurry.

I assume that the Hope Valley area hasn't been as bady affected?
victorclimber - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD: loads of shooting roads in the Grit areas and the sandstone Yorkshire moors covered in Limestone chippings ,so much for national parks etc ..
Chris the Tall - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to balmybaldwin:
The work on Houndkirk Moor (the route from Fox House) has been the cause of many protests from local riders. It can still be great fun - at night, under deep snow - but yep, the rest of time it's simply a means of getting from A to B. One of the tracks on it (the track to Sheephill Road) is still worthwhile, and can easily be linked to the various descents on Blacka.

The problem is that the law which gave bikes the right to use BWs pre-dates MTBs by at least 10 years. The requirements/desires of MTBs are legally irrelevant when it comes to BW or BOAT repairs. We are in same position as ramblers pre-Kinder, so is it any wonder that the law gets ignored.

PDNPA seems really keen on bikes at the moment, which is great, but primarily road or family-orientated flat trails.

Mind you that's all I can ride at the moment.....
Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to balmybaldwin:
> (In reply to ChrisJD)
>
> Having riden in the peak for the first time in a while a few weeks ago, I was shocked at how widespread this practise is. Stanage Causway is reduced to a 100m of interesting track, the rest is just boring gravel. Clough lane has been done as well (near winster/Darley Dale) in exactly the same way as Wigley Lane.

It was for forestry work that the track between Redmires and Stanage Pole was changed.

I do like my challenging mountain biking, but walkers who aren't so keen on rough terrain and other users need thinking of as well. I can remember talking to a physio about the track up to Stanage Pole, and she mentioned being pleased that it'd been made smoother because it made walking up their more pleasant. At the time I was annoyed about it being less challenging, and still wish it was a little bit.

I suppose in the bigger picture there are trail centres to go to for technical challenges which will stay challenging, and what we want from tracks is always going to have to be in balance with what other users want.
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013

BTW, I did not use the word 'hypocrisy' lightly. To quote reasons used by the PDNP (5th Sept 2013) to impose a TRO on the Roych:

'having regard to the existing character of the road'

'preserving the character of the road'

'conserving or enhancing the natural beauty of the area'

And then DCC flatten everything on similar tracks with pulverised dark grey/black asphalt-planings waste .... sorry, 'recycled' material as DCC like to call it..
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Timmd:

See my post above...
robert-hutton on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
I understand you need some interesting routes but DCC have just turned back the clock Stanage Causeway and other’s used to be a track that wasn’t a test of skill and nerve for mountain bike riders, they are trying to make it part of a cycle network available to the masses.

Some say “good” and an issue for others but let’s make room for all

Rob Hutton
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:

And covering tracks with asphalt waste is a defensible approach?

Read John Horscroft's Wigley lane and then come back...


Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
> (In reply to Timmd)
>
> See my post above...

I agree actually. I don't much like the half bricks and bits and pieces poking out from the earth in the track up from Redmires, like the odd bit of electrical wire from a building.

As it get eroded again it looks like random bits of building waste will start emerging onto the track.
Fredt on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:

Anyone familiar with Redmires Conduit know it was a narrow, slightly muddy footpath, (closed to bikes), but shared by walkers, many runners, and dog walkers.

Sheffield City Council resurfaced a section with some recycled crap, which happened to contain a lot of glass. Result: Lots of bleeding dog paws, and a path now unusable by a large section of users.
robert-hutton on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
Yes, I remember when it was a grassy path, I am not saying asphalt waste is the way forward but they cannot turn back the clock, it’s just that DCC are between a rock and a hard place trying to keep people happy.
Rob
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:

I wasn't particularly focussing on the Causeway (its been discussed alot and at lease they used gritstone), but the many other tracks that have been 'improved' and are going to be:

http://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/looking-after/vehicles/priorityroutes

ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:

> it’s just that DCC are between a rock and a hard place trying to keep people happy.

And in the case of Wigley Lane, one person happy at a cost of £60,000.

http://www.v-publishing.co.uk/blog/2013-10-07---the-story-of-wigley-lane.html

Look at those pictures and tell me it is acceptable for DCC (a public body operating in a National Park) to maintain the track like this with zero consultation; imagine if a quarry owner behaved like this....

robert-hutton on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
The photos don’t tell the full story if you went 100 metres down the hill it was a disaster zone for anyone other than hard-core mountain bikes going downhill.
Rob
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:

> The photos don’t tell the full story if you went 100 metres down the hill it was a disaster zone for anyone other than hard-core mountain bikes going downhill.


Disagree! - I know the track well: riders should always ride within their capability. Know plenty of non-hard-core riders who really enjoyed Wigley!
John W - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:

Well then, what you all really need is some "trail bikers ripping up the landscape" to make your boring asphalt paths a bit more interesting, don't you?
Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to John W: I think the issues are that it's an unstable surface if it's a path covered in asphalt chippings, and it's also not 'native' to the National Park.
robert-hutton on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Timmd:
> (In reply to John W) I think the issues are that it's an unstable surface if it's a path covered in asphalt chippings, and it's also not 'native' to the National Park.

Yes what was native was grass and some nice plants on the edges but that was years ago and some of us contributed towards the erosion.
So they have tried to make it more available for the majority they may have got it wrong we cannot tell in the short space of time it’s been resurfaced, if I was out with wife and kids in tow I would think “nice path”

Rob
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:

> if I was out with wife and kids in tow I would think “nice path”


My wife and kids would find the track very boring!
MikeSP - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
I think the issue is the non native material, which looks horrible and out of character.
It seems some of the posters here are annoyed that it has ruined their fun, bridleways are multi-use and designed make it easy to get from A to B. The fact that is was fun before doesn't mean that it will always be fun, I'm sure there are a lot of walkers that prefer a smoother surface.
I'm also not sure now this has made it more dangerous, is this just me?
Chris the Tall - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:
> (In reply to ChrisJD)
> The photos don’t tell the full story if you went 100 metres down the hill it was a disaster zone for anyone other than hard-core mountain bikes going downhill.
> Rob

It wasn't the easiest trail in the peak - 20 odd years ago I took my wife down it by mistake and she still hasn't forgiven me - but nor was it the hardest. Yes it could be tricky when wet and had a few steps, but even a wimp like me could clean it quite easily. And the surface was limestone, on a limestone hill. Cavedale (above Castleton) is much harder - will that be covered in asphalt next ?
Bulls Crack - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to balmybaldwin:


What's dull to you though may be interesting to a horse-rider and the Highways Authority is required to maintain it to a standard that accommodates all its legal users
Chris the Tall - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Bulls Crack:
> (In reply to balmybaldwin)
>
>
> What's dull to you though may be interesting to a horse-rider and the Highways Authority is required to maintain it to a standard that accommodates all its legal users

Don't think that's true - I believe that on bridleways they need to maintain it to a standard that accommodates horse-riders - the wishes of other users don't come into it
Bulls Crack - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Walkers, horses and bikes - all legal users
Bulls Crack - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Bulls Crack:
> (In reply to Chris the Tall)
>
> Walkers, horses and bikes - all legal users

Actually I'm wrong there - they don't have to maintain it for bikes - just horse riders and walkers
Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to robert-hutton:
> (In reply to Timmd)
> [...]
>
> Yes what was native was grass and some nice plants on the edges but that was years ago and some of us contributed towards the erosion.
> So they have tried to make it more available for the majority they may have got it wrong we cannot tell in the short space of time it’s been resurfaced, if I was out with wife and kids in tow I would think “nice path”
>
> Rob

I guess I should have made it clearer, by 'native' I mean materials from the site itself being used to maintain the path, or materials from elsewhere which are the same, like the same kind of rock or earth.
Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to dapoy:
> (In reply to ChrisJD)
> I think the issue is the non native material, which looks horrible and out of character.
> It seems some of the posters here are annoyed that it has ruined their fun, bridleways are multi-use and designed make it easy to get from A to B. The fact that is was fun before doesn't mean that it will always be fun, I'm sure there are a lot of walkers that prefer a smoother surface.
> I'm also not sure now this has made it more dangerous, is this just me?

I gather the chippings are quite deep and loose, so people may feel safe to hoon along at speed seeing a flat and straight forward looking path, and then brake and find unexpected things going on under their wheels, in part to do with what's underneath the chippings as well I think.
Fredt on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Timmd:
> (In reply to dapoy)
> [...]
>
> I gather the chippings are quite deep and loose, so people may feel safe to hoon along at speed seeing a flat and straight forward looking path, and then brake and find unexpected things going on under their wheels, in part to do with what's underneath the chippings as well I think.

So who fancies being the first to sue them for an accident caused by this new surface?

Bulls Crack - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Fredt:
> (In reply to Timmd)
> [...]
>
> So who fancies being the first to sue them for an accident caused by this new surface?

You might have a job since the 1968 Countryside Act section 30 'did not create any obligation for a highway authority “to do anything to facilitate the use of the bridleway by cyclists'
Timmd on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Fredt:
> (In reply to Timmd)
> [...]
>
> So who fancies being the first to sue them for an accident caused by this new surface?

I'm not sure I'd go that far, people probably have to make their own judgements about these things.
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Bulls Crack:

The tracks were are discussing in this thread are Byeways, not Bridleways.

The thread is about the inappropriate method of maintenance chosen by the highways authority (DCC).
Ridge - on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
> (In reply to Bulls Crack)
>
> The tracks were are discussing in this thread are Byeways, not Bridleways.
>
> The thread is about the inappropriate method of maintenance chosen by the highways authority (DCC).

All depends on the definition of appropriate. In terms of a surface for horse riders, walkers and anyone out for a bimble with the kids on their Halfords specials it's a vast improvement on greasy lumps of limestone.

I'm also unaware of this requirement to use only 'native' materials for surfacing paths and tracks within national parks. I'd be upset if it was one of my MTB routes though.
ChrisJD on 09 Oct 2013
In reply to Ridge:

I'll repeat my earlier post:

BTW, I did not use the word 'hypocrisy' lightly. To quote reasons used by the PDNP (5th Sept 2013) to impose a TRO on the Roych:

'having regard to the existing character of the road'

'preserving the character of the road'

'conserving or enhancing the natural beauty of the area'

And then DCC flatten everything on similar tracks with pulverised dark grey/black asphalt-planings waste .... sorry, 'recycled' material as DCC like to call it..
Bulls Crack - on 15 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
> (In reply to Bulls Crack)
>
> The tracks were are discussing in this thread are Byeways, not Bridleways.
>
> The thread is about the inappropriate method of maintenance chosen by the highways authority (DCC).

Yep aware of that - I was replying to someone talking about bridleways
ChrisJD on 15 Oct 2013
Wigley Lane made the paper:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151951525725149&set=gm.10151869642197850&type=1&am...

Though described as footpath - which it is not.

ChrisJD on 17 Oct 2013
malk - on 20 Oct 2013
wbo - on 20 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD: Is Monbiot correct in that the high peak used to be forested. I am far from an expert, but I do not think that is considered to be the case now, and that most of the UK wasn't densely forested.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Gordon Stainforth - on 20 Oct 2013
In reply to wbo:

I thought it was well established that about 7000 years ago the Peak was indeed forested, and that under the peat on the top of Kinder and Bleaklow a lot of old tree roots can still be found. No?
ChrisJD on 21 Oct 2013
ChrisJD on 23 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:

More protecting the 'Character of the Peak' by DCC on Wigley Lane.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10153370627090790&set=gm.10151887308477850&type=1&am...

Especially when The Peak Park writes stuff like this:

Page 16/17 'Protecting the special qualities of green lanes':
http://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/384256/Parklife-October-2013.pdf

ChrisJD on 25 Oct 2013
Chris the Tall - on 25 Oct 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
Great news indeed, looks like a good deal of thought is going into the work

Has anyone been up to the causeway recently - last time I was there it 2/3rds motorway and 1/3rd bowling balls. Has work finished on it ?

Mind you I might have a look tomorrow

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