PEAK PARK: Consultation begins on vehicle ban

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A six-week public consultation on whether trail-bikes, quad bikes and 4x4s should be prohibited from Leys Lane near Longstone Edge in the Peak District National Park has been launched.

The consultation, which runs to October 25, is on a proposed Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) to exclude motorised vehicles from Leys Lane, a narrow walled byway which runs from Great Longstone near Bakewell to Longstone Edge and Chertpit Lane.

The National Park Authority is making the proposal because of the impact motorised vehicles are having on the special qualities of the national park in this green lane and the surrounding area as well as on other users. At the end of last year Derbyshire County Council resurfaced the lane.

People should give their views through the Authority’s consultation system at www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/consultations where full details may be read before commenting.

People may also see the documents at the Peak District National Park Authority HQ, Aldern House, Baslow Road, Bakewell, DE45 1AE, and send comments to the Rights of Way team at that address.

The Authority has already sought the views of highways authorities, parish councils, recreational user groups and environmental groups. The Audit, Resources and Performance Committee, which will make the decision, has also held a site inspection.

Committee chair Christopher Pennell, who is also a gold member of campaign group Friends of the Peak District, said: “We want to hear everyone’s views before we make our final decision in the light of feedback and evidence.”

Following an earlier public consultation, a Traffic Regulation Order made by the Authority on the Roych, a green lane near Chapel-en-le-Frith, becomes operational on Thursday September 19.

Motorised vehicles such as trail bikes, quad bikes and 4x4s will be excluded from a 3.5km section of the Roych, which is part of the Pennine Bridleway national trail. Some 1,235 people and organisations supported this exclusion, with around 1,000 objections. It does not include motorised disability scooters or farm vehicles.

Mr Pennell added: “Making the order at the Roych was the culmination of a long process but we needed to protect this environmentally-sensitive area of the Dark Peak. We considered the potential for partial restraint but felt that for this route it was important to ensure we adequately safeguarded the route, the special qualities of the area and the amenity of national trail users from the pressure of motorised traffic.”

The committee will consider its options for another green lane, the Long Causeway at Stanage, near Hathersage, at its meeting on Friday September 20. This follows a public consultation earlier this year. A report to the committee on the Long Causeway is available from September 13 at www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/committees

Further information on the Authority’s approach to vehicles in the national park can be found here www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/vehicles