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Bollihope - County Durham - Hangers To Be Removed

 Franco Cookson 30 Oct 2020

Morning all,

A bit of a bizarre one this one in the long saga of county Durham sport climbing access. After a lot of negotiation with the gamekeeper and land agent, they have agreed in principle for climbing to take place at Bollihope.

One of their requests is that they want all the bolts removed, prior to us then asking them for permission to reinstate some of the climbs. We've repeatedly explained the pointlessness of doing this, but it is now evident that this is the only way that may lead to a good outcome and them not just paying for the bolts to be removed. 

Obviously it would be damaging to the environment and quarry were we to chop the bolts and then redrill them at a later date, and so we are hoping that removing the hangers will be sufficient, before they can agree on which climbs we can have equipped in the future. I hope this is a significant gesture of goodwill that may prove our good nature to the landowner, rather than a cynical way for them to get the bolts removed for free. 

I'm about to head down to remove as many of the hangers as I can this afternoon/evening, so you are likely to not be able to sport climb there from tomorrow onwards (I've not got a spanner like, so it might be a bit of a job ;) ). Obviously we will be aiming to reinstate the routes as soon as possible, but please let me know if there are any particular favourite routes you'd like reequipping as a priority. In the meantime, I'd be grateful if you could avoid the place, even to climb Trad. Please don't replace the hangers or drill any new bolts(!)  Bollihope Quarry, Weardale, Co. Durham

Thanks in particular to Rob Dyer at the BMC with his effort in negotiations. Despite the lack of progress with securing access to the bolted crags in Durham, rest assured that there is a lot of work going on. I'll keep you updated with any further developments.

Thanks,

Franco

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 Franco Cookson 30 Oct 2020
In reply to Franco Cookson:

Oh yeh, and if anyone fancies lending me a hand, you're very welcome - there's a canny few bolts! 

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 RD 01 Nov 2020
In reply to Franco Cookson:

Having not seen this post I happened to drive past today and was shocked to see the belays/hangers have been removed.

I'm strongly against the idea - and it would have been nice to have been told in advance.

All the climbing in the Bollihope Valley occurs on CROW land so the landowner is unable to object to climbing since this is a legal right. They don't have the option to 'agree in principal' as it's the law and above them. 

It wouldn't surprise me if you now, never get an permission to re-instate the climbs.

Also since there is a mixture of stainless steel (hangers) and steel (belays), the two should be kept separated as they cause corrosion if the are in contact.

Did you happen to find out who removed the same from Hownsgill?

RD

Post edited at 14:00
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 RD 01 Nov 2020
In reply to Franco Cookson:

The correct link is  Washpool Crags (Bollihope)

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 r0x0r.wolfo 01 Nov 2020
In reply to RD:

Maybe someone else can clarify, but CROW doesn't provide permission to install bolts on their land does it?

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 wintertree 01 Nov 2020
In reply to thread:

Bollihope has seen a lot of wider drama this year having become far more popular with people as a destination for picnics and BBQs, with a lot of drama over rubbish, lack of respect for the livestock and most recently a clown (actual, not a derogatory comment) loosing control of his car and parking it on the river bank and the recovery crew then managing to plant it van firmly in the river.  The local MP has been up there a few times to talk with aggrieved parties.  The land owner (owners?) are in a pretty hostile mood towards anyone headed there it seems.  

So I am happy to see the climbing community putting landowner relations at the front of the efforts.  It’s got to be worth a try.

Franco - I bet Saturday was interesting weather wise... 

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In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:

CROW wouldn't have anything to say about placing bolts but climbing itself is allowed. 

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 petegunn 01 Nov 2020
In reply to wintertree:

We took a large bag full of rubbish a few weeks ago. Then a party of lads on motor cross bikes turned up and proceeded to dump all their drinks bottles and food wrappers! F@#$ing d@#@heads!

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 Franco Cookson 02 Nov 2020
In reply to RD:

Hi Rich,

I'm sorry to have caused you alarm. I did mention this to you as a possible outcome last time I spoke to you, but I know it must be annoying when you've spent all that time up there. And I know you weren't in favour of this as a strategy.  

We have a right to climb at the crag. We don't have a right to have bolts in situ and the landowner could very easily chop them. I share your concerns that the landowner may never permit the bolts to be used, but if we don't come to an agreement soon,  I'm sure the bolts will be reinstated.  It isn't loads of work to put hangers back on - redrilling all the lines is!

I feel we have a chance of getting a legitimate venue established in Durham with this,  so a bit of pratting about with hangers is worth it. Worst case scenario is we end up back where we were last week.

Post edited at 07:18
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 phil456 03 Nov 2020
In reply to RD:

> All the climbing in the Bollihope Valley occurs on CROW land so the landowner is unable to object to climbing since this is a legal right. 

I don’t know anything about Bollhope Valley but a minor crag on Dartmoor straddles Crow and Open Access land; the “ Crow side “ is supposedly banned for climbing. 
The only information that I could find tends to lump Crow land and Open Access together; however they are different on maps.

There are also exceptions that apply to Crow Land that prevent public access, an example

land ploughed for the growing of crops or trees within the past year

temporary livestock pens

I have been unable to find the difference between Crow Land and Open Access; 

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 George.Lovett 06 Nov 2020
In reply to RD:

Would be nice to know who removed the Hownsgill hangers. Shame about Bollihope, only just started climbing here, canny little place. But if there is anything more to do let me know, happy to lend a hand.

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 RD 07 Nov 2020
In reply to George.Lovett:

Pushing back to the top as I'm aware of climbers visiting who are not aware that there's not many of the routes climbable.

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 Sam Beaton 08 Nov 2020
In reply to phil456:

Open Access Land as defined by the CROW Act is Registered Common Land (which predates the CROW Act) plus Open Country as defined and mapped by the CROW Act; land which is predominately mountain, moor, heath or down. There was never an automatic right of access to RCL pre CROW Act. Which Dartmoor crag are you referring to?

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 HardenClimber 08 Nov 2020
In reply to Franco Cookson:

If you come to removing bolts.... http://www.resinanchor.co.uk/5.html

This leave a 'clean' hole and the possibility of reuse (for glue in at least)

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 mp3ferret 09 Nov 2020
In reply to Franco Cookson:

I was going to say something about the land owner - but as I'm likely to have to have dealings with them in the future - i'd better not.  Making you remove the bolts just to ask for permission to put some back up again seems exactly like the kind of behaviour I'd expect from them.

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