Project 2026 – So you want to upgrade a footpath to a bridleway?

We have been promoting the Project 2026 activity at Peak District MTB to ensure that we don’t lose any Rights of Way and that routes are upgraded (and protected) based on physical and historical information.

The BHS promoted website shows routes that have been identified by users that they think should be upgraded to Public Footpaths or Bridleways. The link is just for Derbyshire

https://www.bhsaccess.org.uk/dobbin/Project2026.php?id=eastmidlands/2026Derbyshire

Its alright identifying a route that you think should be upgraded it’s the research that is the time-consuming element. The amount of time spent on providing the necessary evidence is considerable and if you are into local history and research very rewarding.

Our friends at the Matlock and District Bridleway Action Group (MADBAG) have identified a route above Darley Dale / Ashover which they suggest that should be upgraded from a Public Footpath to a Bridleway and have made an application to Derbyshire County Council (DCC)

https://apps.derbyshire.gov.uk/applications/right-of-way/details.asp?appID=04294

Apart from the application made to DCC what else has the applicant done…well they have been busy, very busy. Apart from the site visits, they have been sourcing evidence from numerous sources including the Darley Enclosure Award 1769, Maps from 1835 / 1836 etc. Below is a link to the actual application made to DCC

https://apps.derbyshire.gov.uk/applications-documents/rights_of_way/Applications/x04294.pdf

So, what is the next stage? It’s now a waiting game, the application was received in January 2019 there will be various legal and committee hurdles to jump through, so it could be years before the upgrade is approved. If an appeal is launched and there is a public inquiry it could be a long time, an application for another route in Darley Dale was received in November 2005 and it is still awaiting a decision following a Public Inquiry – 14 years and still no decision!

We need to be in this for the long haul, if there is a route that you think should be upgraded then please let us know and we can work with other groups to see if it can be upgraded

26 April 2019

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