Blog

Lydford Lane – restored and being ridden….

Following on from the post on 9th August, the routes at Babcary are already being ridden and proving popular. Below is a photo of the newly cleared and resurfaced Lydford Lane bridleway, complete with the new bollards. Compare this with the earlier photos showing the damage done by 4 x 4s over the past years!

Our sincere thanks to Ginnie Jones at Mendip Bridleways and Byways Association for all her time and effort in achieving this super result and for the reminder that we should take care of the routes we have as well as legally reinstating the under recorded ones!

Photos courtesy of Ginnie Jones.

The newly cleared and resurfaced Lydford Lane bridleway, complete with the new bollards.
Lydford Lane in 2018
Previous illegal use of the Babcary routes.

Thank you to the Compton Dundon Parish Rights of Way Volunteers

The CD Parish RoW Volunteers usually meet on the second Sunday of every month. On the 8th August they met for the first time since March and did a fantastic job of cutting back scrub and brambles to clear Bridleway L7/17, Emblett Lane. Thank you very much from SSBA.

Huge thanks to the Compton Dundon Parish RoW Volunteers for their work to clear the bridleway in Emblett Lane.

SSBA – promoting access for horse riders under the new Environmental Land Management Scheme

SSBA has recently submitted a response to Defra on its Environmental Land Management (ELM) Policy Discussion document. The new ELM scheme is due to replace the current schemes that provide financial incentives for farmers and landowners to look after and improve the natural environment.

Under the new ELM scheme, taxpayers’ money will be used to pay for ‘public goods’ such as better habitats and water quality. SSBA have emphasised these should include public access, particularly plenty of new networks of bridleways and byways. You can read our response in full below.

SSBA-response-to-ELM-consultation-July-20205054

Restricted byways and bridleway at Babcary

A huge thank you to Somerset Council and our friend at Mendip Bridleways and Byways Association for organising the surface improvements of Westover lane (light green line on the map below) and Lydford Lane (dark green line). They are now looking great and accessible again for riders, cyclists and walkers. Bollards are due to be installed on the bridleway section of Lydford lane in Babcary to prevent new damage by 4×4 vehicles. Until the work can be done, part of the path will be blocked to protect the condition of the route. A suitable gap will be left to allow access for legal Rights of Way users.

Back in the Saddle for 2020

As spring arrives, hopefully with some better weather, you might be starting to plan your riding schedule for the year. Have a look at the list of fun rides under ‘dates for your diary‘.

Remember, when the need arises, SSBA can help put together a clearance party to get rid of brambles etc on bridleways.

Our committe members have planned DofE ridden expedition routes in Somerset, Devon and Dorset and done 2-4 day rides in the south west such as the Coleridge Way and Wessex Ridgeway. Contact us if you would like help to plan your horsey holiday.

Happy riding and driving!

Save our Routes in Broadway!

South Somerset Bridleways Association meeting: Broadway Village Hall, TA19 9RX

Tuesday 25th February 7-9pm

Somerset County Council’s Regulation Committee turned down the SSBA’s applications for the Broadway routes on 6th February.

We would like to meet with those riders and carriage drivers that are disappointed in this decision to explain the legal process and why it is so important to save these routes.

The SSBA will appeal the decision. There is still hope that our rights to these routes may not be lost if enough riders and carriage drivers engage with the process.

Please join us on Tuesday and help us save these routes.

Council to repair and reopen bridleway at Kingswood

The SSBA recently worked with South Somerset County Council with regards to issues along some of our bridleways. The responce we received is below. Thank you to those who brought the issues to our attention and to the Rights of Way Area Wardens for their help in keeping these vital routes open.

An update following my visit to Kingswood Farm last week. I have spoken to the landowner at Kingswood about us having reports that riders were being turned away from his farm and yes the Bridleway is still closed at the junction of Y 10/29 & Y 10/27 to Marsh Farm. 

We are going to carry our works along the bridleway from Common Lane to the Dorset border beyond Whitevine Farm which I will list below. (I have the works scheduled in for this month)
Where the B/W starts at common lane there will be a new bridleway gate installed beside the cattle grid.

Where the locked gate is there is now a wide gap this will remain but there will be a section of post and rail fence alongside the stream. Any other gates would have new easy opening arms fitted.

Going towards Whitevine Farm there has been a small gate fitted by the landowner but there is a ditch close to it, the ditch will be piped and a proper B/W gate will be installed the works here will be carried out by the landowner of Whitevine Farm.

Works to the gates going to Marsh Farm will not be done whilst it is under a closure notice, [we] will update you with the situation regarding the dangerous bridge and this closure.

Riders and carriage drivers of Broadway…… (UPDATED)

The SSBA applied for DMMOs for these routes:

  • Dingford Farm to Long Drove (bridleway)
  • Long Drove (bridleway)
  • Hare Lane to Long Drove (bridleway)
  • Hare Lane to Barrington Hill (restricted byway)

The four DMMOs applied for by the SSBA for the above routes will be considered by Somerset County Council’s Regulation Committee at a meeting in Taunton on Thursday 6th February 2020 at 10am.

NEW VENUE: JMR, The Deane House, Taunton TA1 1HE

Details of upcoming meetings of the Regulation Committee can be viewed on Somerset County Council’s website: www.somerset.gov.uk/regulationcommittee.

Anyone can attend the meeting but if you wish to speak you must inform Peter Stiles, the Committee Administrator by 5.00pm three clear working days before the meeting: democraticservices@somerset.gov.uk or 01823 357628 (i.e. 5.00pm on the Friday before the meeting). More information can be found here or get in touch with us if you would like to pass on a comment.