Bridleways are very important to horse riders both from a safety and enjoyment point of view.
Without proper funding and research, miles of historic routes could be lost if the definitive map is closed to claims based on historical evidence.
Support for the BHS amendments will benefit walkers, cyclists and those with mobility problems.
A well defined network of byways and bridleways can work towards the governments goal of a reduction in road traffic accidents by 50% through the delivery of safe off-road facilities for horse riders and cyclists.
When hacking out on bridleways the following suggestions may help to keep a good relationship with the land owner.
Make sure gates are securely fastened.
Keep to the bridleway.
Avoid cutting up land.
Go slowly through fields with stock in them. Stop if livestock run.
Don’t abuse your right to ride over land.
The following is a list of the types of remedies available to you when dealing with bridleways.
Check the route is on the Definitive Map or the Highways Register kept by your county council. Contact the council with any problems encountered and the dates of challenges or obstructions. Reports are confidential.
Lack of use is irrelevant – the right of way exists until changed by a legal order. It is an offence to block the right of way or turn people away.
Your county council is responsible for keeping rights of way usable and can enforce the law. The council has a legal duty to assert and protect your rights of way under the Highways Act 1980, section 130.
Get other riders to write to the council and to your MP if necessary.