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Ex Barnardo’s footpath – Inspector finds in favour of the community action to re-open the footpath

Fantastic news and a Fantastic result for the people of Tadcaster… Ex Barnardo’s footpath – Inspector finds in favour of the community action to re-open the footpath

Press Release from the Community Action Group

After 4 months deliberation following the Public Inquiry in February this year, the Inspector has now announced his decision. We are delighted that the Inspector has in principle accepted that a right of way has come into existence in this location and found in our favour. He has decided that the footpath across the ex Barnardo’s land between Wighill Lane and the Viaduct in Tadcaster should be confirmed subject to an alignment modification.

The Inspector has taken an unusually extended period to consider all the evidence and legal arguments presented in this case and has made his decision. He has decided that our case satisfied the provisions of Common Law under the Act and has concluded that the order should be proposed for confirmation subject to modifications. We understand that this is an interim decision because it has to be advertised to allow for the precise alignment to be determined. We will therefore have to wait for all the formalities to be completed before we can have the final decision. The Inspectors proposed modification to the order route is not considered as a significant change, nothing more than a slight deviation, and is in fact the same ‘straight line’ route across the land as described in our original application submitted in March 2012 (see attached map).

This has been a long and sometimes difficult time for members of the public who supported the DMMO application.

The Action Group, who represented the voice of the community on this issue, now look forward to the reopening of the footpath as soon as possible so that residents can once again enjoy a facility which has been sadly missed since the landowner closed off the path in 2012. We wish to thank all of our supporters, particularly the 267 members of the public who felt so strongly about the closure that they completed Evidence of Use forms. We applaud the individuals who came forward as witnesses at the Inquiry in support of the case who provided credible individual statements. We also appreciate the support we have had from Tadcaster Town Council, The Ramblers and other interest groups. Of particular mention is the expertise and help given to us by the NYCC legal services team and Rights of Way group.

The community was shocked and very upset when the footpath was closed and challenged that decision through the appropriate lawful process. The Inspectors decision has shown that this challenge was justified. The landowner should now accept that the weight of evidence for our case was overwhelming and reopen the footpath without any further delay.”
Map below re Inspectors proposed modified route ( thin dotted red line )



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