Christmas Magic From PathWatch

HOL 146 Upper Millshaw

The Christmas Rambler last stepped out

on the feast of Stephen,

When the mud lay round about,

deep and soft and uneven.

Brightly shone the moon that night,

though the council were cruel,

letting this bloke trash a path,

for ground source heating fuel.

Hither Rambler and stand by me

If thou know it telling:

yonder peasant who is he?

And is that his fancy dwelling?

Sire he has no common sense

And keeps us off this mountain

Have you seen his electric fence?

Get off my land I hear him shouting!

Elec Fence sign

Holmfirth Footpath 85

W Nab 2-2
December 2019 Top of the steps

One of the small jobs done by Kirklees as a result of input from Councillor Paul Davies was the clearance of long standing vegetation from a flight of steps on Holmfirth Footpath 85. As you can see from the final photo in this piece the steps were so overgrown you’d hardly know a public footpath existed. This type of long term neglect is typical in the Holme Valley.

W Nab 2-3
December 2019 bottom of the steps

The steps need some TLC themselves now that they are back with us. As you can see from the photo above there is a longstanding  drainage issue at the bottom of the steps completely obstructing further passage. This still needs addressing a year after making the Highway Authority aware.

HOL 82 veg and drainage
November 2018 Top of the steps


Colne Valley Bridleway 197 – Open!


Previously on PathWatch we’ve blogged about a couple of large beech trees coming¬†down on this popular bridleway and the¬†sluggish response to getting them cleared. After last weeks¬†job half done it’s pleasing to report that the route is now clear. The broken guardrail has also been cleared away. It will be interesting to see if this ever gets replaced.



The ¬£2,500 Gate. Used For 3 Days.

Ramsden Puddles.

A number of readers got in touch following our recent¬†Tyne,Dogger,Fisher,German Bite,Er‚ĶRamsden Road.¬†report to ask the name of the “listing wreck” shown beached by the Ramsden Road “sea”. PathWatch can reveal that this vessel is not in fact a nautical wreck but more of a bureaucratic wreck of the Cock Up Funded By You variety.

It is of course the final resting place of the gate put in by Kirklees Council to stop motor vehicles accessing and damaging Ramsden Road. The gate cost £2,500 of  taxpayers money. It was used for 3 days. The gate was there to enforce the Experimental Traffic Regulation Order which cost another £6,000 . The Experimental Traffic Regulation Order was withdrawn which cost a further £300 etc etc. Bit like the old lady that swallowed a fly? It just goes on and on without end and all at public expense.

The flat 2,000 metre section of Ramsden Road which was always the best bit in terms of condition is now cratered and full of water throughout its length due to vehicle damage.¬† This has happened over the past 12 months and will require far more work and expense than would have been required had the gate been locked and left in place for 18 months as planned and paid for by…well…you get the picture.

The publicly funded repairs of Summer 2018 are shot to pieces by 4×4 usage. This work and tax payers¬† money would have been protected by the gate and Experimental Traffic Regulation Order. But it now all needs fixing again.

Kirklees may be on the brink of funding ¬£16,500 worth of repairs with public money¬† to this flat top section of Ramsden Road and permitting continued vehicular use. This is despite council managers views that 4×4 usage of the lane is contributing to it’s¬† damage¬† and that any works need protecting from 4×4’s for a period of time. That time span was a minimum of 18 months as laid out in the 2018 Experimental Traffic Regulation Order.

PathWatch has asked¬† the council for clarification regarding any financial contribution towards Ramsden Road and the apparent contradiction with it’s long held position that a TRO is needed to protect the route from 4×4’s. Friends of Ramsden Road who have submitted the costed proposals to Kirklees recorded that “Kirklees appears to be prepared to take on the cost of the work and has said that FoRR can contribute with matched volunteer hours and should also seek to involve local businesses to contribute materials etc.¬†

If this is correct Kirklees would appear to be putting substantial amounts of public money at risk by funding works that will be vulnerable to vehicular damage and that they know may well fail. Why would any public authority behave in this manner?

Finally the two grand gate has now been removed from its hinges and laid in the grass. It must of been a hazard to passing shipping after all.

Full Moon-3


Huddersfield Byway 231. Order To Downgrade To Bridleway Fails.

Byway 221 obstruction 4 (1 of 1)

Previously on PathWatch we reported on the legal challenge to the order confirmed by the planning inspectorate  earlier this year. The order downgrading Huddersfield Byway 231 to a bridleway has been an expensive comedy of errors  haplessly performed by Kirklees Council. Not to be undone the Planning Inspectorate went for a nuclear cock up option and have been found to have erred in law. The decision quashing the order is here 27 Nov 19 Sealed Consent Order -approved 21 Nov 19

So the badly drawn byway remains in situ.The planning Inspectorate have advised that¬† “PINS is no longer involved and the matter has now been passed back to Kirklees MBC.¬†¬† It is up to Kirklees MBC to decide what to do next (e.g. abandon the claim or re-investigate the matter with a mind to making a new Order)”¬†Oh dear….


Colne Valley Bridleway 197. If A Job’s Worth Doing…

Col 197-2

Previously on PathWatch we’ve blogged about 2 large beech trees coming down on Colne Valley Bridleway 197¬†here and¬†here . The trees came down in some wet & windy weather in September. Whilst it’s undoubtedly a tricky job to remove them, and one for an expert, the state this popular path has been left in after works to clear the trees is shocking.

The metal guard rail has been broken and left twisted across the path and one of the root balls has been left sat on the bridleway. There is no signing and guarding of the arboreal disaster and the public are left to take their chances.

Col 197