CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Hertfordshire Life today CLICK HERE

Looking after Hertfordshire’s footpaths

PUBLISHED: 11:00 24 February 2016

There are more than 5,000 public footpaths criss-crossing the county

There are more than 5,000 public footpaths criss-crossing the county

Archant

Rights of way make up around 2,000 miles of countryside pathways in Herts. Isabel Crozier of the Countryside Management Service explains the work that goes into keeping them accessible

CMS volunteers at a newly installed 'kissing gate' in WalkernCMS volunteers at a newly installed 'kissing gate' in Walkern

Hertfordshire has a network of more than 5,000 paths stretching almost 2,000 miles across our beautiful countryside, towns and villages and the county council’s Rights of Way Service is responsible for their protection, accessibility and legal definition.

Maintenance

The service ensures routes are easy to find with signposts where they leave roads, easy to follow by providing adequate waymarks along the route and easy to use through drainage, surface maintenance and keeping paths clear of vegetation. It also keeps structures such as barriers, bollards, bridges and steps safe and fit for purpose.

Enforcement

Ensuring landowners comply with requirements to reinstate paths after ploughing, prevent obstructions on routes, and maintain stiles and gates.

Development

Advising the 10 Hertfordshire district and borough councils on Rights of Way aspects of planning applications that affect both existing and desired paths and to secure improvements through planning conditions and obligations.

Volunteers

The Countryside Management Service works closely with the rights of way team to deliver improvements to the network through the work of its volunteers.

In the last six months, the four mid-week groups of conservation volunteers have installed or restored 258 steps along rights of way. If we were to calculate this as one continuous flight, it would scale 39m, which is equivalent to the height of nine double-decker buses, stacked one on top of the other.

The groups have also installed 65m of new boardwalk, numerous new waymark posts and cleared encroaching vegetation along hundreds of metres of footpaths and bridleways, which will benefit residents and visitors exploring Hertfordshire’s countryside pathways for years to come.

Volunteers also play a role in monitoring the path network. The CMS Footpath Friends each adopt a path in the county and walk it four times a year.

Each sends in reports of any obstructions, waymarks that needs replacing or overgrown vegetation. These issues can then be prioritised for maintenance to ensure walkers following the many self-guided walking routes published on the CMS website have a good experience. We always welcome more Footpath Friends volunteers. If you would like to adopt one of our newest walking routes into the countryside around Elstree and Borehamwood, contact the CMS.

The Broxbourne Woods National Nature Reserve walkers guide has recently been renewed and reprinted too so contact the CMS to get a copy of this publication and go and explore the many routes including the 11 mile reserve trail.

Ramblers

The Ramblers Association has launched its most ambitious campaign ever, the Big Pathwatch. This encourages walkers to adopt a 1km square area and walk all the rights of way within it, logging any issues on the website or smart phone app. You don’t have to be a member of the Ramblers to get involved and the information is passed onto the Rights of Way Service to prioritise and deal with. To get involved, go to ramblers.org.uk/bigpathwatch

For more information, visit the CMS website hertslink.org/cms, email northeast.cms@hertfordshire.gov.uk or call 01992 588433.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hertfordshire visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hertfordshire staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hertfordshire account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Yesterday, 10:05

From Aldbury to Wheathampstead, Hertfordshire has a plethora of pretty villages. We have picked just 10 that you should visit

Read more
Friday, November 16, 2018

Christmas isn’t complete without a trip to a festive fair. From German-style food stalls to vintage fetes, Hertfordshire’s Christmas markets have it all

Read more
Wednesday, October 31, 2018

We quiz author Kevin Exley about his new book that takes the reader on the trail of fascinating stories, new and old, around Berkhamsted

Read more
October 2018
Monday, October 29, 2018

Hertfordshire is a county with a vast, fascinating and sometimes dark and bloody history that has reportedly lead to more than a few angry ghosts sticking around to wreak havoc and take revenge on the living. We have gathered 10 of the most haunted places in the county

Read more
Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Make the most out of autumn with these eight walking routes that take in a variety of Hertfordshire’s terrains and - most importantly – have a cosy pub along the way

Read more
Tuesday, October 16, 2018

We've selected a variety of spooky activities in the county that are sure to delight the kids

Read more
Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust’s Charlotte Hussey explores the fascinating world of bats and new projects in the county to help conserve these remarkable creatures

Read more
October 2018
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

The People’s Trust for Endangered Species is asking the public to look out for mammals on Hertfordshire’s roads as part of a citizen science project

Read more
September 2018
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

From stately homes to skateparks, we have selected some of the best ideas for things to do in Hertfordshire

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

The diverse parkland of Pishiobury Park in Sawbridgeworth is undergoing a five-year plan to promote its heritage and enhance its habitats. It makes for a royal day out

Read more
September 2018

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy



Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Local Business Directory

Search For a Car In Your Area

Property Search