We’ve revised the Kelston Roundhill permissive path agreement with B&NES. This is the contract which allows people to walk on private land from the Cotswold Way and Cullimore’s Lane up to Kelston Clump to admire the views without creating a right of way.
The routes are unchanged. The changes are first that dogs must now be kept on a lead, and second that it is now explicit that organisised events such as fun runs require prior written permission from the owner and notification to the farmers.
The Kelston Roundhill permissive path routes – the green lines – are unchanged.
The revisions have been done in response to two problems. The first is unsatisfactory dealings with commercial running events businesses who charge customers to run on private land and leave farmers to clear up the mess and repair the damage.
The second is the significant percentage of dog owners who behave irresponsibly. We’ve seen children knocked down by dogs and sheep worried. Many people don’t accept this as a serious issue but in living memory three dogs have been shot by farmers locally for worrying farm animals; one case was a generation ago and the people involved are still not on speaking terms.
Everyone is in favour of more fresh air and exercise, and both the owners and farming tenants willingly share the land for suitable recreation. But we require businesses wanting to use the land to behave in a businesslike way, and we’ve had to make this explicit. And the growing numbers of school children visiting take precedence over the industrial needs of professional dog walkers.