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/ Eastern Lakes, new (and unnecessary?) waymarkers.

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smm - on 09 Sep 2018

I've just been up on Askham fell in the Eastern Lakes and a number of new finger post waymarkers for Cycle Routes have been put upon the open fell / common. This seems to be part of a plan from nearby Lowther Castle to market various local routes with names to promote their new cycle hire business. All the routes follow well established bridleways and minor roads (or tracks / paths in the Estate).

Askham fell is by no means an unspoilt wilderness but it's a lovely open area in the National Park popular with walkers, cyclists, riders (and me). On our route today I saw 3 brand new fingerposts signing particular cycle routes, right in the middle of the common and with a fairly obvious visual impact. 

Does anyone know whether these require planning permission? Can a landowner just put signs up like that? It feels like another step towards the theme park-isation of the Lake District and is a bit depressing. I'm all in favour of people being encouraged out of their cars and onto their bikes but what's wrong with a normal map / some kind of phone App for the navigationally challenged. 

 

cander - on 09 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

Lowther Estates are very likely to be up to speed on all planning issues, are you sure they put the posts up, might have been the LDNP people, council, or tourist board.

smm - on 09 Sep 2018
In reply to cander:

No idea who put them up, but they only signpost the cycle routes which are being promoted by Lowther. They are very obvious so yes I'd be surprised if they hadn't got planning permission (if indeed it's needed), but was just wondering what the process was. 

wercat on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

try what they did to signs in the war to confuse the Germans!  Actually it is quite in keeping with the zeitgeist to assume or take control of things for your own benefit so anything goes.   Have ye no wares to sell to the signpost users?

Post edited at 10:18
wercat on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

is it a common?  If so the Commoners would have the say. 

DancingOnRock - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

Are they wooden? Give them 12months exposed to the elements and they’ll blend right in. 

Bulls Crack - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to wercat:

Any signs would have to be agreed with the delegated Highways authority. Fingerposts would most likely not qualify as structures needing secretary of state approval on commons

summo on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

No objection to the sign, but not sure why that style. 1m high plank between 2 posts would do the same job, be above any snow and blend into the very slight undulations on the common, especially if they used a darker wood or stained it. 

cander - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to wercat:

Dont think so, Lowthers own just about all the land in this area.

 

Actually just checked, its part of the Lonsdale Estates - hence the nickname Hughs view - duh, I should've known that really.

Post edited at 10:54
smm - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

I agree with Summo's comments that a shorter plank style post would be better. But no sign would be best of all in my opinion! Yes the fingerposts will look more natural once they're weathered but surely we should be trying to keep open countryside and the fells in as wild a state as possible? It's not like these signs are signing bridleways and footpaths, it's a sign for a named cycle route that won't be much use to anyone who's not 'doing' that route. 

Dave Cumberland - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

Remember it's a theme park, it's not allowed to be natural, the NPA has to interfere in every area, you can't just leave it alone! They will put garden gnomes out next.

DC

GrahamUney - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

As far as I know these signs where put up by the Lowther Castle estate (part of Lonsdale Estate) to promote mountain biking. They've got nothing to do with the LDNPA.

smm - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to GrahamUney:

But the land is still in the National Park so presumably they have to comply with any applicable planning regulations? But maybe there aren't any regulations for sticking up a signpost.....

GrahamUney - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

I'm no planning expert, but I can't imagine that any landowner would need permission to put up signs on their own land. 

GrahamUney - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

I agree that the signs are ugly though! No need for them either.

smm - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to GrahamUney:

Agree completely! I can grudgingly ignore the ones on the roads but not on the open fell. 

Wiley Coyote2 - on 10 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

I may be being a bit of a Jerimiah here but I'd say you'd better start getting used to it. The whole agenda of getting more and more people out into the hills is likely to lead to increasing numbers of signposts to ensure these same people, especially families with children who may only walk or hire a bike during  the annual holiday, don't get lost and come to grief. I already hear arguments that having encouraged people outside it is irresponsible not to keep them safe. Restricting use of the hills to those who can read maps or use a GPS  is apparently that greatest of modern sins - 'elitist'.

Put that 'safety first' banner into the hands of people with a commercial interest in selling the outdoors (eg Lonsdale estates) and you have an irresistible combination. Parts of the Alps are bristling with signs giving directions, distances and timings so why can't we?  Or so the argument goes.

wercat on 11 Sep 2018
In reply to smm:

would they be robust and convenient enough to support a tall pole lashed thereto?

Doug on 11 Sep 2018

I've never understood why the UK never adopted the type of waymarking found in countries such as France & Norway with relatively discrete painted waymarks.

 

Mike-W-99 on 11 Sep 2018
Doug on 11 Sep 2018
In reply to Mike-W-99:

Well at least I could see it without my specs


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