Monday 1st Sometimes Monday’s are depressing! I am retired and a pensioner and like others in my position feel isolated, helpless and unheard. I am up against County Councils and campaigning, organised, well funded organisations, who have access to great media coverage for their ‘cause’ and more worryingly appear able to manipulate law and truth to their advantage. What chance do I and others like me have of our voices being even heard let alone our own human rights even acknowledged?
Tuesday 2nd On a more positive note, fighting a modification order has enabled me to ‘join’ a great ‘club’. I was never much good at ‘history’ at school but now my idea of a great day out is to go to the National Archives at Kew for the day! Interesting, peaceful and relaxing but exciting too when ‘great discoveries’ are made and ‘things’ fall into place. Like the satisfaction in adding the last piece of jigsaw puzzle. Oh and did I mention the bookshop, cafe, great restaurant and good food to be found there?
I have been to lots of enquiries too. There’s always a drama, incident or memorable event that will occur. I love the ‘funny’ ones. Like playing ‘sleuths’ late at night putting our posters up or scouring the area to find food and too late for anything but a curled up sandwich at a somewhat less than to be desired pub. Getting lost on the way back to the caravan we’ve booked for the weekend or having ‘one too many’ whilst ruminating over the events of the day and speculating on what is still to come. Not to mention the ‘incident’ of the seagull who caused the destruction of one very embarrassed inspectors shirt!
Or the one that was cancelled when we were half way there. We didn’t think that was quite so funny, however, especially as the enquiry had to be ‘opened and adjourned’ which took all of five minutes! No expenses for all our wasted money and time of course, unlike the inspectors or councils. ( but then, they have public money to cover all the venue and human resource cost!)
Wednesday 3rd The ‘email network’ has picked up the ‘new’ Open Spaces website. They are upping their game as 2026 approaches. I can see where they are coming from in wanting to protect the rights of people to enjoy the countryside.
I just wish they would understand that we, like everyone else, also have a right to the peaceful enjoyment of our own homes and gardens and the farmers to their livelihoods.
They are running ‘courses’ on how unqualified volunteers can set in motion claims for ‘lost’ paths.
These are paths that may or MAY NOT be paths already, may or MAY NOT be public, may or MAY NOT go through someone’s garden or over an unsuspecting farmers field.
Somerset County Council currently has over 300 applications. It says it can cope with 10 per year. And that’s only ONE Council!
It doesn’t take much mathematical skill to see that some, as yet unsuspecting people, could be facing devalued property, years of limbo land and stress because of a claim which may or MAY NOT be correct!
Thursday 4th I send off a couple of letters in the hope that one day both councils and government will realise what is happening and protect the underdog instead of the powerful lobby that they are so afraid of upsetting.
Friday 5th Norfolk Highways gets it all wrong again! If they can’t even get a ‘verge’ enquiry right, heaven help me with the BOAT!
Saturday 6th A day of rest from any possible emails from the council. You will discover ( if you ever have a modification claim against you) that councils usually ‘hit you’ with something late on a Friday! I expect that’s so you can worry and stress for the whole weekend and reply on the Monday when they are ‘out of the office’.
I think I maybe turning into somewhat of a cynic! Oh dear!