Public Right of Way Update

A response has now been received from Wokingham Borough Council to the application made by Friends of Fox Hill on 31st October 2019 for a number of Public Rights of Way on Fox Hill.

The map below shows the network of paths applied for.  These cross Wokingham Borough Council land as well as areas of private and unregistered land.  The map also shows which paths have been accepted as Public Rights of Way (Blue), paths rejected (Red) and paths that do not require to be adopted as there is a legal assumption of permission to roam on local authority owned land (Green).

The reasons given for refusal are:

  • The routes outlined in each evidence form when combined were not consistently on the same line,
  • The minimum of seven users on a path was not met,
  • The path did not connect to a public highway at both ends (a legal requirement),
  • There is not a requirement for an order to be made on local authority land.

We have 28 days to appeal receipt of any decision, as does any affected landowner.  At present Friends of Fox Hill are considering the reasons for each refusal and deciding if there are grounds for an appeal to be made on any of the failed paths.

This has taken quite a time for the decisions to be made but we applied for several Public Rights of Way and the process is quite complex.  For information, the Council response consisted of a 45-page report and 25 separate appendices.

It should be said that at the same time as our application, a separate application was made on behalf of the British Horse Society for a network of Bridleways across the area and they have been provided with a decision as well.

Friends of Fox Hill would like to thank those who completed evidence forms showing more than twenty years usage which has enabled us to progress to this stage with some success.

Friends of Fox Hill will keep you updated if an appeal is to be submitted and if so, any decision made.

Tony Delliston – Vice-Chair