Families are calling for a popular pathway to be reopened – after it closed suddenly without any consultation.
Parents walking their children to nursery found the gateway at Hobner Lane in Staveley, had been shut off, forcing youngsters to walk by the busy road to get to school.
The land is owned by the Salvation Army Housing Association which claims the route was closed after complaints from residents.
But families say the path has been used for over 20 years and is a convenient short-cut for many residents.
June Francisco, of ABC Nursery, off Middlecroft Road, said: “Local residents are up in arms.
“They’ve now got to walk all the way round and it’s quite a long way. It’s just an inconvenience.”
She added: “Quite a lot of families come from down there and use that lane a lot as well as children walking to school.
“There has been a lot of grumbling about it, especially when it rains and they’ve got to walk along the road side.”
Last week parents walking their children to school were confronted with the high iron gates which had been welded together over night.
Lisa Overton said: “It’s been open to the public for 20 years
“Everyone found out that the gates had been welded when they were trying to take children to school in the morning. There hadn’t been any warning.
“Now we have to walk all the way round on the main road which is very busy. It is not very Christian of them to do this to say they are supposed to be that kind of organisation.”
A spokesman from the Salvation Army said they had decided to permanently block off the gateway as it was not a public right of way.
He added: “This measure was taken to stop people who are not residents of Monyash Close from cutting through the scheme late at night which created a regular noise nuisance to residents at Monyash Close. SAHA has a duty as a Social Landlord to take measures to decrease anti social behaviour and to create safe communities. It was with this outcome in mind that this action was taken.”