Author Topic: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things  (Read 117549 times)

Offline blackholesun

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #825 on: April 04, 2013, 05:12:23 pm »
The YDLAF minutes state that it was through lack of organisation. Graham, if you could give us other reasons, with evidence, for its omission, then we would all be interested in them. This isn't about reasons why it could be, these would be reasons why it wasn't. Historical, rather than logical, evidence.

Chris, I agree that it is important. However, CROW lands can still be subjected to exceptions if there are reasons of conservation. This is part of the legislation. However, archaeological finds are not common, and the vast majority of caves show no signs of ancient human activity. Is this your main concern about free access?

Offline paul

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #826 on: April 04, 2013, 05:13:46 pm »
Global Moderator Comment Once more we are drifting (prior to the last couple of posts) from the point in question: If cavers are allowed to cross CRoW designated land to a cave entrance, are they also legally allowed to enter the cave on a caving trip. Please stick to the subject.
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Offline Stuart Anderson

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #827 on: April 04, 2013, 05:18:16 pm »
Just for a point of clarification - BCA came into being in 2003.
CRoW was 2000
NCA was the body in question during he CRoW consultations.

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Offline Stuart Anderson

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #828 on: April 04, 2013, 05:18:44 pm »
Once more we are drifting (prior to the last couple of posts) from the point in question: If cavers are allowed to cross CRoW designated land to a cave entrance, are they also legally allowed to enter the cave on a caving trip. Please stick to the subject.

http://ukcaving.com/board/index.php?topic=15045.msg195431;topicseen#new

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Offline Jenny P

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #829 on: April 04, 2013, 05:23:17 pm »
Just for a point of clarification - BCA came into being in 2003.
CRoW was 2000
NCA was the body in question during he CRoW consultations.

I think you will find that the BCA came into existence officially in 2005/6, though 2003 was the start of the process of moving from NCA to BCA.  The fact remains that BCA, per se, had nothing to do with the original discussions on CRoW and NCA did.  However, the new booklet NECR012 Edn. 2, which appeared in 2009 appears to include caving/potholing:

3.2.1 The CROW Act provides for open-air recreation, basically on foot,
which would include the following activities:-
 Walking.
 Climbing.
 Potholing.
 Informal games.
 Scrambling.
 Scree-running.
 Picnicking.
 Ski-ing, toboganning, etc.


This appears to be a change to the original thinking and ought to be followed up.  However, it would be sensible to try to do this in a non-confrontational way since we do not want to antagonise landowners unnecessarily and risk losing the limited access we have in some areas.

Offline Badlad

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #830 on: April 04, 2013, 05:30:39 pm »
Think on this.

Most of the caves under Leck and Casterton Fells are part of the Three Counties System.  A permit is required for the entrances on these fells.  Yet easy and unpermitted access can be gained if you access this same system via Link, Pip, Boundary, Mistral, Bull Pot, Ireby, Large or Rift. 

You can park at Bull Pot Farm, get kitted up in full caving gear, walk over the CRoW open access land, walk past Lancaster Hole (but you can't go down it), continue to the entrance of Link Pot, go caving, end up underneath the entrance shaft of Lancaster Hole (but you can't go up it) and exit via Boundary Pot and walk back to the car over Casterton Fell.  This doesn't make sense.

Although what you describe is physically possible, what makes you believe it is legally so? What is it about accessing the cave via Link Pot that gives you the right to visit the bottom of the Lancaster Hole entrance shaft?

Well there lies another interesting debate.  The complexities of which make a mockery of the system and one which is, of course, impossible to control or police.

So, you agree that you do not know that what you describe is legal. Fair enough. As to whether it can be controlled or policed, of course it can be. Whether the required methods would be considered acceptable in all quarters is another matter.

Should I say, "in practice this would be impossible to control or police", as is the case up there now.  I don't know about the legalities of passing underground borders but I suspect it will be well disputed.  This thread has demonstrated to me that no one really knows the legalities of access to CRoW land anyway, and below it will likely be more so.

Offline paul

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #831 on: April 04, 2013, 05:31:48 pm »
You can find a link to the dcoument Jenny is referring to above at http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/publication/41007
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Offline blackholesun

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #832 on: April 04, 2013, 05:33:04 pm »
Jenny, despite linking to that document, I'm cautious about it and may not have described it originally correctly. N.E. have replied to me to say that:
"Therefore it is fair to say that the consultant [who wrote it] didn’t express solely their opinion or that of DEFRA or Natural England."

Offline Jenny P

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #833 on: April 04, 2013, 05:37:10 pm »
Jenny, despite linking to that document, I'm cautious about it and may not have described it originally correctly. N.E. have replied to me to say that:
"Therefore it is fair to say that the consultant [who wrote it] didn’t express solely their opinion or that of DEFRA or Natural England."

Agreed, but it is at least a small chink of light and worth following up if it's part of a document that NE commissioned.

Offline Ian Adams

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #834 on: April 04, 2013, 05:38:04 pm »
.... it would be sensible to try to do this in a non-confrontational way since we do not want to antagonise landowners unnecessarily and risk losing the limited access we have in some areas.


Completely agree. All we want is clarity as to whether we "can" or "cannot".

 :)

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Offline blackholesun

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #835 on: April 04, 2013, 05:41:15 pm »
Jenny, despite linking to that document, I'm cautious about it and may not have described it originally correctly. N.E. have replied to me to say that:
"Therefore it is fair to say that the consultant [who wrote it] didn’t express solely their opinion or that of DEFRA or Natural England."

Agreed, but it is at least a small chink of light and worth following up if it's part of a document that NE commissioned.

I certainly agree with this. Just feel that after linking to the doc, that I should probably check that people have not got the wrong idea.

Offline bograt

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #836 on: April 04, 2013, 06:00:09 pm »
Wow Jenny, thats one hell of a missive!
Caving is referred to significantly in the Earth Heritage Sites section, page 175 on, there is some suggestion that NE could apply some form of access control to caves on conservation grounds.
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Offline Jenny P

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #837 on: April 04, 2013, 06:03:43 pm »
Wow Jenny, thats one hell of a missive!
Caving is referred to significantly in the Earth Heritage Sites section, page 175 on, there is some suggestion that NE could apply some form of access control to caves on conservation grounds.

Yes, they already do on some sites anyway.  At other sites, even though they are SSSIs as are most caves, no attempt at control of access is made by anyone, neither landowner nor NE.  This does seem inconsistent.

Offline Andyj23UK

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #838 on: April 04, 2013, 06:57:14 pm »
Or, put another way, you'd like to find out whether the law can be interpreted such that it allows you over-rule or ignore any wishes of the landowner.

the CROW act - with one fell swoop removed the landowners wishes with respect to climbing , having a picnic . etc etc etc

what is so special about the landowners right to restrict caving - or delagate that restriction to an acess body ?

i have to wonder why you are so oposed to CROW act allowing caving ?

the only people who seem to benefit are those who " manage " caving access - which begs a question ... or 3

Offline graham

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #839 on: April 04, 2013, 07:05:38 pm »
the only people who seem to benefit are those who " manage " caving access - which begs a question ... or 3

I am directly involved in the management of a cave or two. What, pray tell, are the benefits that I get from this? Please take into account the fact that my current state of health means that I don't actually get underground very often these days.
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Offline Brains

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #840 on: April 04, 2013, 07:24:53 pm »
We dont know - but can guess, having the control and authority is a motive well known in many walks of life, as is being part of an elite. Being a big fish in a small pond is a role that is assumed by many, far too many people.

Offline Andyj23UK

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #841 on: April 04, 2013, 07:26:41 pm »
I am directly involved in the management of a cave or two. What, pray tell, are the benefits that I get from this? Please take into account the fact that my current state of health means that I don't actually get underground very often these days.

if you dont get anything out of it - why do you do it ? [ PS - i consider the ` warm fuzzy ` of knowing i have helped someone else - a benefit to me ]

PPS - your health and fact you no longer cave are an irrelevant appeal to emotion

EDIT  to add : screw decorum - some people thrive on " power " real or imagined - however petty - you are not " one of those people " - are you ?

Offline khakipuce

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #842 on: April 04, 2013, 07:27:44 pm »
I am directly involved in the management of a cave or two. What, pray tell, are the benefits that I get from this? Please take into account the fact that my current state of health means that I don't actually get underground very often these days.

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Offline graham

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #843 on: April 04, 2013, 07:45:47 pm »
Right so now I know what the benefits are. To quote a very good friend of mine super smashing, great.  :blink:

Oh and Andy, my health is wholly relevant as it means I'm not involved simply to secure easy access for myself, that's why I pointed it out.  :coffee:
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Offline Badlad

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #844 on: April 04, 2013, 09:05:22 pm »

Graham - if you had been around a hundred years ago would you have upheld the landowners right to prevent access to all members of the public to open country?  This was the position in much of the country until the 1932 mass trepass of Kinder Scout.  Landowners clearly didn't want anyone on their land and it took militant action, mostly by ramblers to set in motion change.  Some went to jail for it, not for trepass, but for brawling with the gamekeepers which the landlord sent to try and stop them.  Since then the ramblers have led a campaign for open access to fells and the like culminating in the CRoW Act of 2000.  One of the main reasons the 'right to roam' gained favour with governments was because being able to freely access certain land for recreational purposes was likely to improved the nations health. It wasn't very popular with the big landowners though.   Social change requires that more people have greater access to the countryside and I welcome it, the more free the better, and it that causes problems then educate, don't control and restrict. 

Basically, I am suggesting that if we just did what the landowner wanted we wouldn't enjoy much access to open countryside at all. 

By the way I am also a landowner myself but take a very different view to the controlled and restricted position you seem to favour.

Offline graham

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #845 on: April 04, 2013, 09:36:30 pm »
Badlad

Am I the only one that sees the distinct ecological difference between people wandering freely over reasonably robust fellsides and remembering that spreading them all out over the fell minimises the energy impact previously limited to narrow footpaths, which them needed constant repair and comparing this with most of our caves where there are not many different routes through one passage and where energy inputs from visitors are disproportionately high compared with the normal background levels.

Caves is different to fells.
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Offline Anon

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #846 on: April 04, 2013, 10:02:25 pm »
Am I the only one that sees the distinct ecological difference between people wandering freely over reasonably robust fellsides and remembering that spreading them all out over the fell minimises the energy impact previously limited to narrow footpaths, which them needed constant repair and comparing this with most of our caves where there are not many different routes through one passage and where energy inputs from visitors are disproportionately high compared with the normal background levels.

Caves is different to fells.
Obvious difference, yes. But even under CRoW narrow over-used footpaths exist, people are somewhat sheep-like, they follow defined routes, so given greater freedom they don't necessarily wander randomly, ridges being a fine example of high traffic areas. Some more enlightened walkers do make their own routes rather than sticking to guide books / defined paths - I seem to recall some access/ecological reference when CRoW first appeared that tried to alleviate fears by saying exactly the same thing! CRoW made little difference in the greater scheme of things.

Caving has and always will be a minority sport. Even with more open access the increase in traffic will be, in most places, negligible.

Offline Alex

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #847 on: April 04, 2013, 10:05:53 pm »
Quote
Badlad

Am I the only one that sees the distinct ecological difference between people wandering freely over reasonably robust fellsides and remembering that spreading them all out over the fell minimises the energy impact previously limited to narrow footpaths, which them needed constant repair and comparing this with most of our caves where there are not many different routes through one passage and where energy inputs from visitors are disproportionately high compared with the normal background levels.

Caves is different to fells.

If that was true Graham then the Leck fell permits for example would not ask you to stick to a certain path would they? Caves on the otherhand tend to be made from Rock which is much harder than grass, so your right caves are different, but were diverging off topic again into conservation.
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Offline NewStuff

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #848 on: April 04, 2013, 10:07:01 pm »
Caving has and always will be a minority sport. Even with more open access the increase in traffic will be, in most places, negligible.

Graham - The vast majority of people think we're "fucking crazy". I can count on one hand the amount of people that have *not* expressed that, or similar sentiment, when told of my hobby.

I think pretty much everyone has encountered this on a regular basis. If CRoW was applied, just where are these people, hiding away, that will add the mass of bodies into caves that you seem to be assured is imminent? You are making a mountain out of a bloody molehill in an effort to prop up your ailing argument.
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Offline Alex

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Re: Loss of cave access, CROW and other things
« Reply #849 on: April 04, 2013, 10:12:30 pm »
Aye true, Also even those who do cave only cave normally 10 - 20 times a year (I am in the minority with my 60+).

Except for commercial groups there won't be masses and masses of people going through these now open access lands and as the CROW act someone pointed out does not allow commercial groups, they will still need permission. There will not be a massive increase in people and even if there was doubling caving numbers is still not alot of people.
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