PROW - SEPTEMBER 2020 PATH UPDATES
Another relatively quiet month, so additionally a bit of news from KCC, and an appeal for new Local FP Officers. Meanwhile no further developments on any of the "still live" issues listed in July's update (see below).
KCC General News
Staffing: I am told that KCC hope to get 20% of their office staff back in their offices from 1 September. But how exactly this affects the PROW teams isn't clear as yet.Meanwhile the PROW teams working at home report record levels of complaints and enquiries. So now they are undertaking only to reply "within 20 working days".
2020 Cropping Campaign: checks of certain paths "at risk" of non-reinstatement. It didn't happen this year. The official reply I had was "No full cropping campaign this year. A couple of letters sent and a few phone calls made. Inspections started too late and there were lots of other things to look at."
COVID 19 closures: Footpath ER107 from Birches Farm (on the lane not far from Lydden Circuit) over to Wickham Bushes is "closed" at its northern end. The path runs very close to the property of a elderly couple, who were very nervous at the start of lockdown and were shielding as per government advice. However, this has really now gone on for long enough, and the "alternative route" proposed has a very awkward stile, so KCC are revisiting the issue.
Local FP Officer (LFO) vacancies
Just to let you know that I am seeking new LFOs for our area. Graham Smith, who covers Eastry, Goodnestone and Nonington, is soon moving to Scotland. And there are large areas of Dover DC territory covered by two LFOs who, being full-time workers, cannot give the attention that they or I would like, to all of their parishes. So if anyone is prepared to take on any parishes at all, I shall be very pleased to hear from them (full list of parishes on application, but there's 20 of them all told!)
Path change updates
Coldblow Woods, Ripple
The creation order has now been made for footpath EE489, which will provide new PROW inside the NE, SE and NW edges of the Woods, situated between Walmer station and Ripple Mill.
An order has been made to divert footpaths ER71 and ER63 through the new Whitfield housing being built between Archers Court Road and the A256 dual carriageway. Fortunately this is a very small diversion, made essential by the new house construction.
For more details of these and any other PROW issues, please contact Roger King on 01304 362730, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
JULY ADDENDUM (UPDATED)
Consultation initiated - no order (or decision to abandon) made as yet
- Sutton & Ripple footpaths EE427 and EE451. Claimed upgrading to bridleway status. Runs via Winkland Oaks and across the railway(!) towards Ringwould.
- Middle Heronden to Pike Road, Venson, in Eastry parish. Claim of a new route of bridleway status. A creation order will be made here, probably next year.
- Hythe High Street. Claim of a new 60-yard footpath running south from the mid-point of the High Street to Prospect Road.
- Willow Woods, Sutton parish. Claim of a new 60 yard restricted byway opposite the southern end of footpath EE403, on the other side of Willow Woods Road.
- Between Ripple Road and Coldblow Road, near Ripple Mill. Claim of a new restricted byway which would extend cul-de-sac EE446A to the next road.
- Woodnesborough footpath EE226, south-west from the Sandwich bypass. This path through to Foxborough Road is now being claimed as a bridleway.
Orders made, but not yet confirmed (or rejected)
- Goodnestone EE488. This order would see a long, strategically-important bridleway created, running east from Knowlton Court, along Black Lane, and as far as the A256 south of Eastry. This issue currently being decided by the Planning Inspectorate on the basis of all parties' written representations.
- Goodnestone EE487. A revised order has been made to create a footpath south from Knowlton Court to its junction with the Chillenden to Elvington road.
- Sandgate HF8/HF56. Minor diversions here would essentially take account of the unavoidable rerouting due to approved new building off Military Road.
- Capel ER171. Another diversion due to approved development at Tumble Tye Farm, where the path will rerouted further east.
- Kingsdown ER273. This order would move the path (just west of East Bottom Farm) out of a horse paddock onto an adjacent enclosed path already in use. Perhaps surprisingly, two objections were received, so the matter is being decided by the Planning Inspectorate on written representations.
- Birchington TM35/35A. Although all parties were agreed on this 2018 order's aim to take routes out of Great Brooksend Farm and reroute them on a "hard path" further east, the order has not been confirmed since the "hard path" has still not been created. The landowner blamed this year's "wet winter" but still intends to go ahead.