Monday, March 12, 2007

Speak up for bridleways

I have a love/hate relationship with horseriders. When it's wet, horses' hooves act like rotavators, churning surfaces into thick mud. When the sun comes out hoofprints dry into "Home Counties pavé"- a sort of inverted cobble which gives a tooth-jarring, arm fading ride. On the plus side, the British Horse Society (the equestrian's CTC) are very effective campaigners for off-road access, so I've got a lot of time for them.
Phil Wadey runs the local BHS cadre (Hertfordshire) email distribution list, which carried this alert the other day:

BRIDLEWAYS (No. 2)27.02.2007
Hoyle, Lindsay That this House recognises the
importance of bridleways for horse-riders to exercise in safety and enjoy the countryside; notes that many bridleways are in poor condition or are abused by people using motorised vehicles; and calls on the Government actively to promote the use of bridleways, ensuring that those who use bridleways inappropriately are fined, to look to extend the number of bridleways across the country and to ensure that existing bridleways are kept open and are well-maintained for horse-riders.
Some MPs have tabled Early Day Motion number 1004 in support of bridleways.
Early Day Motions (EDMs) are often used to find out how much support different policy choices might attract, and to see whether proposed legislation might get through the Commons. This could be such a flyer. Even if not, it's important to show the Government that there is as much support for new paths this year as there was last time such an Early Day Motion was tabled.
If you would like to see the EDM supported, you need to write to your MP giving the number of the EDM (1004), and reasons why you think it needs support. It is always best to give your own personal experience relating to one or more of the aims of the EDM rather than to use a form letter.

This is well worth supporting if you ride off-road at all.

St Albans MP Anne Main is silent on bridleways both in parliament and on her own website, and hasn't yet signed up to the EDM. (She's equally silent on cycling generally)

Find out who your MP is here, and then write to them using this free and convenient site.

No comments: