Another Brick in the Wall

Whiteleyshield Road Saved for the Nation! OK, it is only an upland rough road, not quite a mile and a half in length, but it has taken:

  • Ten years.
  • Two definitive map modification order applications.
  • Two definitive map modification orders.
  • Two Secretary of State’s Inspectors.
  • One public hearing.
  • Three decision letters.
  • And a LOT of work by the voluntary sector to get this restricted byway properly recorded and safeguarded.

No partridge, nor pear tree, but I would not be surprised if they were in there somewhere too.

Whiteleyshield sketch

You can find the road by looking on online mapping for Coalcleugh, five miles east of Alston in Cumbria. A bridleway runs west from Coalclough, and a little way along is Sunnyside. From here a black-dash line runs northwards to the motor road a bit south of Carrshield. No track is shown south from Sunnyside, but the order route runs south to the motor road just west of the ‘hairpin’ bend.
The sketch is by Dave Young and is of Norman Canham … must be over 20 years ago now. How time flies. If you want to read the recent decision letter (in two parts) do a Google search for the FPS references and download the digital versions.
FPS/P2935/7/37M (final decision) FPS/P2935/7/37 (interim decision)

Nice Bridge

A new postcard of the Great North Road in Scotland, of Tomatin, which is getting a long way north. What an elegant bridge for somewhere so remote: somewhere probably better typified then by the rather lovely wooden general store.

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Purp Perps

Purpresture: Wrongful encroachment upon another’s property; esp., any encroachment upon, or inclosure of, that which should be common or public, as highways, rivers, harbors, forts, etc.

In Wideopen, North Tyneside, about five miles north of the centre of Newcastle, along the Great North Road, lie a couple of bridleways which, between them, have seen a great deal of obstruction and interference over the past decade – it will all get written-up one day.

One bridleway (part of North Tyneside Council’s excellent ‘Waggonways’ network) runs through a new housing development. One early morning back in the Spring, Olde Graveller happened to cycle along, only to find that the developer was quietly snaffling a metre or more of the right of way:

Perp #1

A s.130A notice to the council was in the postbox by lunchtime, quickly resulting in a slapped wrist for the developer, and the removal of the new fence (below). Well done North Tyneside Council.

Perp #2

Rigor Mortis

Finally – after almost a dozen years – the southern part of The Drift Road near Slaley, Northumberland, has been added to the definitive map as a restricted byway nearly a mile in length, and the obstructions sufficiently removed to facilitate passage.

It is all a bit of a seedy story, really, and if you have any sense that the process of recording, protecting, and using ‘lost ways’ should be fair, open, and properly thought-through, then you will (I sincerely hope) find it all rather disturbing. Click on the photograph below to open the report.

DR thumb