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.

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.

Proposed creation of a public bridleway over land in Donyatt

Somerset County Council (SCC) is proposing to create a route as a public bridleway over land which was excluded from the recent SCC farm sale and would be pleased to receive your comments.

The lawful width of the route will be restricted to a maximum of 3m throughout except where it passes through existing field gates and a 1.5m wide gate will be installed adjacent to the existing field gate at location A (see plan below). The final position of the gate is to be confirmed following this consultation.

The proposed bridleway route is shown on the plan below.

Please do send your comments or questions on this proposal to Mr Loren Eldred, SCC Rights of Way Officer by the 20th December 2019: LEldred@somerset.gov.uk

A303 Sparkford to Ilchester dualling scheme

Our chair, Sarah Bucks, has been working hard on getting as many new safe riding routes as possible out of the A303 Sparkford to Ilchester improvement scheme.  Sarah recently responded to ‘Deadline 7’ and there is only one more deadline to go before June 12th.


Attached is what has been submitted. Please let us know your comments.

Project Link

SSBA Submission