TRAIL USERS SEEK FAIR REGULATION FROM NATIONAL PARK AUTHORITY.
Motorcycle trail riders and 4 x 4 drivers seek fact-based and proportionate management of green lane use.
At a meeting of the Access Committee of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority on 17 April 2008 representatives of the North Yorkshire Trail Management Advisory Group (NYTMAG) will accuse Authority members of failing to fulfill their quasi-judicial role with the necessary degree of objectivity and discernment.
NYTMAG made recommendations to the National Park Authority which sought proportionate management of use of sensitive green lanes in the National Park by mechanically propelled vehicles. But at its meeting in January 2008 Access Committee members rebutted users’ comments and agreed to seek permanent full-time bans on use of the eight routes in question by recreational motor vehicles.
NYTMAG will say that the decision of the Access Committee was not supported by the evidence that was before them and will suggest that advice given to Access Committee members was not sufficiently independent or impartial. It may also be alleged that some members of the committee hold positions in other organisations which led to them being unable or unwilling to consider this matter fairly and without predetermination.
Stuart Monk from Ingleton, Chairman of the umbrella group of motor vehicle users in North Yorkshire, says ‘We have studied all the information that is available to inform the management of recreational motor vehicle activity in the Park and made recommendations accordingly. This information supported the proposals submitted by NYTMAG to regulate use according to time and space. We supported regulating use on some routes at weekends or in winter, or applying a one-way system. Where evidence justifies it we accept that full-time ban on use by motor vehicles may be appropriate in particular locations, but no such case has yet been made. Members did not make any site visits and have reacted only to exaggerated lobbying against our recreation. The National Park Authority has ignored the facts that were before them”.
When discussing the matter in January one member of the National Park Authority spoke against the application of different management regimes on different routes because they would be too complex for users to understand. Stuart Monk’s response to that was “NPA Members should not judge other people by their own inability to deal with minor complexities. Trail riders and drivers are very used to dealing with varied use management regimes and to interpreting signs, in the same way that all drivers have to look for signs ordering one-way street, weight limits, or pedestrian only areas in town and villages”.
NYTMAG is asking the YDNPA to step down from considering this issue any further and to submit it to independent inquiry for an impartial decision.
For more information please contact Stuart Monk, Chairman North Yorkshire Trail Management Advisory Group – t: 07764 814316, or Geoff Wilson, North Regions Liaison Land Access & Recreation Association and Secretary to North Yorkshire Trail Management Advisory Group – t:: 01768 898584 0r 07768 055937.
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