Off-roader ban?

OFF-ROAD motorcyclists and 4x4 enthusiasts have come under fire for the amount of damage being caused to a route which forms part of the Pennine Bridleway.

Walls, fences and gates have been demolished and the surface has become rutted. Now councillors in Chapel-en-le-Frith are backing any plans put forward by the Peak Park authority for the route to be closed partly or fully to off-roaders.

Councillor Mike Smith said monitoring had shown that 468 motorbikes and 183 off-road vehicles.

And Cllr Hilary Batterbee said: “We are going to have to stop them. I would never go over there on a Saturday or Sunday. It is appalling, the state of it.”

Cllr Mike Smith said around 60 metres of fencing, replaced just six months ago, had already been destroyed.

But the decision split the P Council: Cllrs Liam McCarthy and Richard Clarey said off-roaders had rights to use the route and that people enjoyed the countryside in different ways.

They said the main problem was that the surface of the route not being properly maintained.