Protest in Peak District over proposed 'green lane' access ban

Protest riders in the Peak District
Image caption The protesters want continued access to lanes in the Peak District

About 120 vehicles have been involved in a protest against proposed restrictions on use of unsurfaced lanes in the Peak District park.

Protesters said a ban on vehicles in "green lanes" would take away historic rights built up over centuries.

The Peak District National Park Authority said a consultation had finished but no final decision had yet been made.

The park authority said it had received 2,500 responses in the consultation.

'Mild inconvenience'

The consultation followed concern about damage to the lanes, and disruption to walkers and animals.

Two "go-slow" protests have already taken place to show opposition to the proposals to ban vehicles from unsurfaced lanes in the park.

Green Lane Association spokesman Chris Mitchell said: "The proposals mean a number of popular lanes used by 4x4 vehicles and trial bikes will be closed to traffic and kept for walkers and horses only."

Protester Mike Irving said: "By mingling, taking up car parking spaces and cafe benches, we're causing a mild inconvenience and engaging the public in conversation about the problem.

"We've not been badly received. There's a small minority of people who don't want us there.

"We're not hoodlums. We're not driving off-piste. We're not villains. We are respectable people who are being tarred with the same brush."

A spokesman for the park authority said: "We are currently looking at our consultation responses ... and we're looking to get them into a reportable format. No decision has been taken as yet."

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