Walkers must be vigilant

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Your article on the stone slabbing of a footpath on Blacka Moor, (December 3), mentioned the £10,000 funding provided by the Peak & Northern Footpaths Society.

The Society is also funding improved signage on Blacka to the tune of £1,700 next year to improve the experience for walkers.

The society was founded in 1894 to fight the illegal obstruction of the Hayfield to Snake Pass footpath and continues to this day to campaign against the obstruction of footpaths across 35 authorities in the Midlands and north of England.

The society has also recently adopted a policy of funding the replacement of stiles with gates where we can use the new structure to commemorate someone.

We already erect our distinctive green and white signposts at path junctions all over our area and have more than 500 so far, many in the Peak District.

Our latest ‘battles’ are to save a public footpath leading from Bradway down to Dore and Totley railway station which Network Rail want to close while work goes on to redevelop the station.

Many residents use the path through Poynton Wood to reach the station in order to catch a train to Sheffield and Manchester.

Another footpath across the railway line which walkers have used for decades in Wharncliffe Woods near Deepcar has been blocked off by Network Rail without any notice and we are being assisted by local MP Angela Smith in our efforts to get it reopened.

Walkers must be ever vigilant in fighting to keep paths walkable as resources for highway authorities are reduced year on year.

The importance of societies like ours will only increase in years to come.

John Harker

Trustee, Peak & Northern Footpaths Society