1) Wednesday 27th June – attended Footpath Officers’ Briefing Meeting at Balfour Beatty, Rotherwas. Introduced to key personnel such as
Will Steel, Network Regulation Manager,
Mike Walker, Public Rights of Way Team Leader,
Linzy Outtrim, Stakeholder Manager
Carys Bate, Locality Liaison Co-ordinator
Rachel Rice, Knowledge Manager
Key points mentioned were
a) that the Public Rights of Way (PROW) funding to Parish Councils will end on 1st April 2019
b) Balfour Beatty (for Herefordshire Council) will still support the P3 scheme (through Carys Bate) – but not financially
c) Stiles will still be provided to landowners on a like for like basis but landowners will only receive 25% off the cost for a gate
d) There are 94 parishes in the P3 scheme
e) Mike Goodwin of the Ramblers advised the meeting that Ramblers’ Work Parties could assist Parishes with path work including strimming, putting stiles in etc.
f) PROW are Minor Highways and have all the protection in law that any other highway would have. In Herefordshire there are 1873 miles of Public Footpath, 257 miles of Public Bridleway, 20 miles of Byway Open to All Traffic (known as a BOAT) and 14 miles of Restricted Byway
g) I think I heard right that there are just 2 Balfour Beatty employees covering path maintenance work in the County of Herefordshire! So, the emphasis now is on the Parishes to get the work done themselves.
2) Wednesday 4th July noticed that path HO8 is blocked by fallen branches/vegetation near Roman Road and fence in danger of collapse
3) Friday 6th July walked 2.1 miles from Shelwick Green down paths HO16 and HO17 clearing stiles and access to stiles as far as the Roman Road. Then walked to Bridleway HO18 to inspect the magnificent new metal gate fitted in the very recent past. A success story in reporting problems through the Herefordshire website.
Holmer & Shelwick Parish Footpath Officer