Gates on footpaths

Clifford Pope
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Clifford Pope » Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:52 pm

Round us the local authority has been putting in a lot of new metal "kissing gates" - the kind that have an enclosed swinging gate so users have to pass through one at a time.
They are certainly not useable by wheel-chair.
They are usually spring-biased so they close on the side that prevents a sheep etc simply pushing it open.

siteone

Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by siteone » Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:55 pm

the kissing gates can cost over £300 any way they have informed gates are not allowed, meaning gates are not allowed.

Makes me wonder if planning for garden was actually gained in first place.

Roblewis
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Roblewis » Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:57 pm

Clifford Pope wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:52 pm
Round us the local authority has been putting in a lot of new metal "kissing gates" - the kind that have an enclosed swinging gate so users have to pass through one at a time.
They are certainly not useable by wheel-chair.
They are usually spring-biased so they close on the side that prevents a sheep etc simply pushing it open.
It is always well to remember that RoW on private land cannot be forced to be disabled accessible unlike land owned by public bodies

mr sheen
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by mr sheen » Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:19 pm

Roblewis wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:57 pm
[quote="Clifford Pope" post_id=211921 time=<a href="tel:1556380361">1556380361</a> user_id=13280]
Round us the local authority has been putting in a lot of new metal "kissing gates" - the kind that have an enclosed swinging gate so users have to pass through one at a time.
They are certainly not useable by wheel-chair.
They are usually spring-biased so they close on the side that prevents a sheep etc simply pushing it open.
It is always well to remember that RoW on private land cannot be forced to be disabled accessible unlike land owned by public bodies
[/quote]

the LA have a duty to keep PROW free of obstructions that create barriers to their use by members of the public. People with disabilities are members of the public and hence have a right to use PROW and hence the LA has a duty to keep PROW free of obstructions that would unnecessarily exclude people with disabilities. This is different from being forced to make private land disabled accessible.

Collaborate
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Collaborate » Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:27 am

I was surprised that some posters were claiming the LA could prevent a gate on a PROW. It seemed illogical to me because we see them all over the place.

This is the government advice to landowners on PROWs: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/public-righ ... structions Note the reference to a padlocked gate. Not simply "a gate".

This is the government advice to LAs: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/public-righ ... hts-of-way. Note that obstruction is not defined. So not helpful, when the common sense view is that gates, and stiles, are perfectly acceptable on public rights of way, otherwise we wouldn't see them all over the place.

The notion that a LA should not allow any obstruction of a PROW that is not wheelchair friendly is I think taking things too far, as that would seem to outlaw any gate of whatever description. How then would farmers be able to fence a filed of sheep, for example?

I did a little research and from that I gather that s63 of the Countryside and Rights Of Way Act 2000 inserted s130A into the Highways Act 1980. It is this that confers on the LA a statutory duty to ensure that ROWs are kept free of obstruction.

This is s130A https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/37/section/63.

this website says that a landowner needs the permission of a LA to erect a gate: http://www.environmentlaw.org.uk/rte.asp?id=207

Note under s130B(4) (c ) that the magistrates, on any LA application to enforce, must find
that the obstruction significantly interferes with the exercise of public rights of way over that way.
There is caselaw on what constitutes significant obstruction - the case of Herrick v Kidner http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2010/269.html. It doesn't look promising for OP, I have to say. Required reading.

mr sheen
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by mr sheen » Sun Apr 28, 2019 8:07 am

Collaborate.... Please point out where anyone has suggested a PROW has to be 'wheelchair friendly'!!!?? :roll:
No-one has said that!!........are you equating 'disabled' with 'wheelchair-user'?
Only 5% of disabled people are wheelchair users......someone needs some diversity training methinks!

Collaborate
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Collaborate » Sun Apr 28, 2019 8:54 am

How about:
Clifford Pope wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:52 pm
Round us the local authority has been putting in a lot of new metal "kissing gates" - the kind that have an enclosed swinging gate so users have to pass through one at a time.
They are certainly not useable by wheel-chair.
They are usually spring-biased so they close on the side that prevents a sheep etc simply pushing it open.
Then, in response to Rob Lewis' post, you said:
mr sheen wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:19 pm
the LA has a duty to keep PROW free of obstructions that would unnecessarily exclude people with disabilities. This is different from being forced to make private land disabled accessible.
Please clarify where you think I have misunderstood you. Are you saying that wheelchair users are not people with disabilities?

pilman
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by pilman » Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:03 am

In Central Bedfordshire where I live it is quite common to see kissing gates at each end of a public footpath that passes over land which is directly accessed from the public carriageway which has no footpath alongside it where it runs from the village alongside the fields on each side of the road.

I then went onto Google and typed in "public footpath gates images"
There are dozens of examples of how local authorities erect gates on public footpaths in the countryside.

It would seem completely unreasonable if Suffolk County Council insist that there be no gates on a public footpath through a private garden when many local authorities have gated public footpaths in country locations whenever they wanted to.

Roblewis
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Roblewis » Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:05 am

The phrase disabled accessible is widely used to refer to wheelchair access. Ambulant disabled persons are happy to have the same access as other ambulant persons

Roblewis
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by Roblewis » Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:09 am

pilman wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:03 am
In Central Bedfordshire where I live it is quite common to see kissing gates at each end of a public footpath that passes over land which is directly accessed from the public carriageway which has no footpath alongside it where it runs from the village alongside the fields on each side of the road.

I then went onto Google and typed in "public footpath gates images"
There are dozens of examples of how local authorities erect gates on public footpaths in the countryside.

It would seem completely unreasonable if Suffolk County Council insist that there be no gates on a public footpath through a private garden when many local authorities have gated public footpaths in country locations whenever they wanted to.
This highlights my point about not enforcing wheelchair access over land that are not in the ownership of public bodies as defined in legislaion.

siteone

Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by siteone » Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:35 pm

Collaborate wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:27 am
I was surprised that some posters were claiming the LA could prevent a gate on a PROW. It seemed illogical to me because we see them all over the place.
My comment was based on the first post, which I felt reflected a conversation, or a post I might have misread on my ipad.

I am aware having friends who own fields and the like, of the use of gates on rights of ways across fields.

arborlad
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by arborlad » Sun Apr 28, 2019 1:46 pm

siteone wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:35 pm

I am aware having friends who own fields and the like, of the use of gates on rights of ways across fields.



You're not comparing like with like.
arborlad

smile...it confuses people

ukmicky
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by ukmicky » Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:00 pm

I would say provided the gate posts don’t encroach on the footpath reducing its width, then a gate that can be freely opened by the members of the public would not be considered to be a significant obstruction and should therefore be ok.

What does the definitive statement say about the ROW.
Any information provided is not legal advice and you are advised to gain a professional opinion

siteone

Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by siteone » Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:48 pm

arborlad wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 1:46 pm
siteone wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:35 pm

I am aware having friends who own fields and the like, of the use of gates on rights of ways across fields.



You're not comparing like with like.
I am still not sure planning was given for the property. Why planning was given and the right of way issue wasnt raised or given consideration, is a matter for solicitors. But I have known people who have struggled to get planning for garden, in farming areas.

pilman
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Re: Gates on footpaths

Post by pilman » Mon Apr 29, 2019 12:46 am

A change of use of land from agricultural use to use as part of a residential garden is immune from enforcement action by the local planning authority after 10 years.

It then becomes the lawful use of the land, although the public right of way cannot be disturbed.

Since it is very common for highway authorities to place gates or stiles at various points on public footpaths, it is difficult to understand how Suffolk County Council can claim that an unlocked gate would be an obstruction to a pedestrian use of a footpath located on private land.

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