Council progress on Public Rights of Way

A council report says that all but one outstanding applications, for a Public Rights of Way in the City, have now been processed for a decision.

Council barriers used to obstruct public right of way

Unfortunately the outstanding application is the one for Acomb Moor (the link from Foxwood Lane to Osprey Close).

The Council promised to determine this by the end of February.

Following our story yesterday, were advised that the Osprey Close footpath obstruction has resulted from drainage works undertaken in the area.

The residents association is pressing local Councillors to provide a hardcore surface to ensure that walkers can at least get past the mud.

In that respect the path provided by the Council for the Hawkshead Close access into the wood.

Leaf detritus needs to be swept from Osprey Close footpaths

NB. We’ve asked for the Osprey Close area to be swept to remove tree detritus and the remains of last years weed growth which can still be found in some gutters.

Some weeds still obstructing drainage gullies.

York Council action on Public Rights of Way?

A couple of months ago the Local Government Ombudsman criticised the York Council for the time it was taking in dealing with applications to have Public Rights of Way (PROW)  declared.

The Council has a long waiting list. It can sometimes take several years for the applications to be processed.

Some PROW access points are in a poor state of repair

Two applications are to be considered by the Council at a meeting being held on 25th July. They concern public footpaths at the following locations

The meeting on 18th July will be told that government legislation will make some aspects of PROW decision making simpler.

The Deregulation Act 2015 will have an effect on historic rights of way.

The Act makes changes to existing legislation affecting rights of way aimed at streamlining the application procedures for new rights of way under which landowners will have a greater say.

The key area of improvement relates to the process for determining applications.

Local Authorities are given the power to divert a route at the application stage should it not be suitable (for example where it runs through property such as working yards where there is a significant risk).

Other changes include restrictions on how long an application can remain at each stage of the process, gating of rights of way and the introduction of a basic evidence test. Many of the changes are aimed at ‘historic rights of way’ – routes based on documentary evidence from before 1949.

In order to provide certainty for landowners about what rights of way exist on their land, the government intends to close the definitive maps to claims of historic paths which existed before 1949 on 1 January 2026

NB. Amongst the PROW applications in the York Council queue to be considered is one, crossing Acomb Moor, linking Foxwood Lane to Osprey Close. Safety on the link has been criticised because of lack of maintenance of one of the stile accesses.