New stile installed
In the late 1980s a footpath survey was carried out in the Community of Whitford in Flintshire. This found that 76% of the paths were either “obstructed or difficult to use”. As a result the local Ramblers began a campaign to get the paths open.
With the exception of a few footpaths a steady but gradual improvement has taken place. The situation now is that over 70% are now “easy to use”.
One footpath though has been a problem right through this period. Despite the farmer being fined for obstructing the footpath in the early 90’s the path has remained obstructed by a gate covered with barbed wire and a barbed wire fence. The Flintshire Committee has, ever since it was formed in 1996, been attempting to get the footpath open. The Council has during this period taken some action but this has been patchy and the farmer has always re-instated the obstructions or removed the signpost.
Earlier this year Klaus Armstrong-Braun, on behalf of the Ramblers, served notice under Section 130A of the Highways Act 1980. This time the County Council was told that the Ramblers were prepared to go to the Magistrates Courts if they did not take action to re-instate the publics’ right to walk the path.
The gate at the southern end was finally replaced during the summer and has not been interfered with by the farmer. In mid November the Council completed the job by inserting a stile at the northern end of the path. A footbridge has also been built over the stream.
The footpath is located at SJ 148 779 near Davenbank on the road from Carmel and Holywell.