PROW - MARCH 2020 PATH UPDATES
Goodnestone and Eastry parishes - creation order for new bridleway EE488 referred to the Planning Inspectorate
KCC are satisfied that enough evidence exists to (re)create a public right of way east from Knowlton Court along the whole of Black Lane,including the existing public footpath ER261, across Thornton Lane, and down to and across Venson Road. This bridleway will open up an extremely valuable connection, with links from Chillenden to Tilmanstone and Eastry villages. The creation order also allows for a further bridleway up to and across the A256 as far as the road to Betteshanger church. A few objections were received (including one from the owners of Knowlton Court), so the issue has been passed to the Planning Inspectorate. A final decision is expected in July or August.
Sutton & Ripple footpaths EE427 and EE451 - claimed upgrading to bridleway status
KCC are currently consulting on a claim to upgrade this lengthy route. It runs from Winkland Oaks Cottages on the road just SW of Sutton village, past Winkland Oaks Farm, SE across the next road and via the Hangmans Lane track to Ringwould Road, SW of Ringwould village. It also includes an at-grade railway crossing. At first glance the evidence appears to be quite strong, but the idea of horses using an unguarded railway crossing must give rise to some concern.
Eastry parish - new bridleway from Heronden to Venson claimed
KCC are also consulting on a claim that a new bridleway should be created from Middle Heronden Farm SE to another claimed BR just east of Fairview, Pike Road, Venson, in the SW of the parish. There is at present no trace of this route on the ground, but it does appear in part on the 1947 OS map, and as a whole on pre-war mapping.
HE199 Hawkinge - diversion at Hawkinge Cemetery now in force
The relatively small diversion of this path around the western edges of a new burial plot area on the western side of Hawkinge Cemetery has now come into force - meaning that KCC has approved the new route as complete and fit for purpose.
Folkestone HF68 - temporary closure of the path down to the beach
Because there is "a likelihood of danger to users due to erosion and land slippage", the section of this path from near the Roman Villa site on the East Cliff, down to the beach, is now closed until (potentially) early September.
"Don't Lose Your Way" - Ramblers' national initiative
As Ramblers members, you are probably aware that the Ramblers nationally are encouraging people to compare current and historical maps to identify routes which may have been lost, and would need to be (re)claimed before the 2026 cut-off date. Details at: https://www.ramblers.org.uk/news/latest-news/2020/february/find-map-save.aspx. Unfortunately this somewhat cuts across what Kent Area Ramblers have been doing on their own account for the last year, although it is hoped that some sort of arrangement will be reached between the two parties involved.
Meanwhile (issues referred to in previous updates)
Meanwhile the claimed new routes at Coldblow Woods, Ripple, and off Hythe High Street; also the proposed diversions at Kingsdown (ER273), Barville Road, Tilmanstone and Great Brooksend, Birchington, all remain live, but there is no "new news" on them this month.
For more details of these and any other PROW issues, please contact Roger King on 01304 362730, or by email at email@example.com