Following on from the update issued by Greenspace in September, Greenspace are asking for assistance in determining how long the paths along the Ruchil have been in common use.
In particular, how long they have been using the path along the field edge – particularly if they have been using it for 20 years+. but have had very few responses.
If you are able to provide such evidence, can you please contact Calum Bachell, ideally by email to firstname.lastname@example.org detailing your historic use of the path. This will be very helpful if the path does get obstructed.
Here is the briefing note published by Greenspace in September:
Briefing Note – September 2023
To be read in conjunction with the attached plan (see below)
Barbed Wire Fence next to Right of Way (RED on plan)
- Access has been obstructed on a path linking to asserted Right of Way 25/2 by the erection of a barbed wire fence where a gate once stood. Access has been possible through here for a considerable time and is a valued off-road link from Comrie to Cultybraggan camp.
- The landowner was contacted and has been met with on site to discuss this issue. At this meeting he was offered a self-closing gate to replace the barbed wire fence and advised that legal action may be taken to remove the obstruction should it remain. This can be done under Section 14 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.
- PKC have had no response to the offer of the gate. PKC have attempted to contact the landowner several time and will do again, via email. Agreement for a self-closing gate would be the preferred outcome. If there is no agreement by Friday 15th September, PKC will initiate the process for a Section 14 order. S14 orders are a legal process and may take time depending on various factors, so a definite timescale cannot be accurately estimated.
Strainer posts on edge of core path (BLUE on plan)
- Strainer posts have been placed to the side of the core path CMRI/1, RoW 25/1, where the landowner’s intention is to erect a fence. While there is not currently an obstruction to access the landowner has been advised that there needs to be sufficient room to allow safe access for path users.
- If the path is encroached upon, PKC can take action to remove any obstructions under Section 19 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.
Strainer posts on edge of field (YELLOW on plan)
- The path along the edge of the field is not designated as a core path or right of way, but a right of responsible access does apply along it. Access rights do not apply within the field itself while it is in crop. This path is well used for many years as a safer alternative to the core path which has eroded in several places due to flooding from the Ruchill Water.
- At the time of meeting, access along this path had not been obstructed to date but would be once wire goes up between the fence posts. If this happens this may be considered an obstruction to access unless a suitable safe alternative route is provided.
- Wire has now gone up, creating an obstruction to access, and will be considered for S.14 action.
- The bird scarers are not an access issue, but reports of their overuse have been passed on to the Environmental Health officers at Perth & Kinross Council.
- Any serious anti-social behaviour (e.g. threatening behaviour) should be reported to the police as well as PKC
- Access takers do need to act responsibly and follow: Practical guide for all | Scottish Outdoor Access Code (outdooraccess-scotland.scot)
PKC are actively monitoring the situation and will take appropriate action accordingly. For more information please contact Community Greenspace at email@example.com