Police have condemned sick vigilantes for putting people's lives at risk after shocking pictures emerged showing how scenic trails in the Peak District have been sabotaged with booby traps.
People in the cycling community are becoming increasingly worried by the growing trend, which in recent months has seen thick branches cut down and fixed at head height along a bridleway in Bradwell, carpet tacks have been laid across a road in Bamford and a wall of rocks have been constructed across a path in Aston in the Peak District
There has also been examples of it happening in parts of west Sheffield and in Doncaster which has been reported to South Yorkshire Police.
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Images showing the obstacles have started circulating on social media among cyclists, walkers and horse riders who have condemned the sick practice.
Derbyshire police has now expressed their concern that lives could be put at risk and urged whoever is doing this to stop.
In a statement, the force said: “Officers are aware of issues in the Bamford area regarding tacks on the road, however, we are not aware of other issues in the areas mentioned at this time.
“Anyone acting in this manner is putting people at serious risk of injury and, potentially, even death. It is not just cyclists that could be affected - horses and their riders, walkers and other trail users could all be hurt.
“We would urge anyone who comes across instances of this nature to contact Derbyshire police – or the force that covers the area in which they are located. Without this information it is very difficult for officers to build up a picture of the scale of the issue and put any strategies in place.”
Fulwood man Chris Maloney, who writes the Keeper of the Peak blog that promotes cycling, urged those responsible to stop immediately.
The 37-year-old father-of-two said: “If someone sees these obstacles late and comes off their bike then this could cause very serious injuries or even put people's lives at risk. It needs to stop.”
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Mr Maloney said he does not really know why someone would do such a thing.
He accepted that, like within any group, there will be a small section of cyclists who on occasion go too fast.
But added: “Whatever people's gripes are there is absolutely no justification for putting people's safety at risk.
“We have a mantra in the cycling community of being respectful and thinking about other people enjoying the outdoors.”
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Incidents of trail sabotage should be reported to police on 101.