Category: Uncategorized

Path Access into Hagg Wood – 6th January 2020

We have recently had the good news that the City of York Council intends to recognise as public footpaths the two access paths into Hagg Wood that we claimed back in 1997. We have received a very large number of messages of support from local residents for our campaign for reopening public access from Intake Lane, including many stressing the importance of such access for families of parents, grandparents and small children, both able and less able, as well as for health walkers, scouts, beavers, guides, brownies and cubs.

Unfortunately, a handful of objectors can still risk great local unhappiness by making the process of getting the access paths open again much longer than it needs to be. The outstanding issue of parking along Intake Lane is a question that needs to be resolved separately, and which we can productively engage in to find a viable solution. Closing the main path has failed to stop people wanting to use the wood and may well have resulted in more people wanting to park, to reduce the much longer walk into the wood that they face with the main access path blocked.

Having the main access path recognised as a public footpath under the responsibility of the City of York Council also helps to alleviate a second main reason for the blockage, that relating to liability. The possibility of selling the forestry track, from Intake Lane to the entrance to the wood, to the Forestry Commission, which we would be willing to assist in, would offer further benefits to the existing landowners.

Let us hope therefore that good sense prevails so that all can benefit.

Conservation Working Party – Thursday 9th January 2020

Our next working party is to be held on Thursday 9th January commencing at 10.00am. However, due to the current restriction on gaining access to the wood via the Intake Lane entrance we will again be using the entrance from the end of Hagg Lane next to Cottage Plantation.

Any volunteer who travels by car we would advise you to park at the Children’s Play Park at the start of Intake Lane by 9.45am. If you normally walk into the wood could you also meet here at 9.45am. We will then drive in a limited number of our cars to Cottage Plantation, where the Forestry Commission has arranged for us to park, and then walk into Hagg Wood along the public path.

We will again be working in the Millennium area of the wood and all the necessary tools will be provided. Please bring gloves if you can, and wear stout shoes or wellies.
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The Grapevine Parish Magazine entry for January 2020

Despite the recent gloomy weather and the onset of winter, there is normally still plenty of enjoyment to be had by walking through Hagg Wood. Our Community Woodland is a valuable local amenity, of which we have been very proud and are fortunate to have in our locality, so long as access to the wood is not too difficult for those who could enjoy the wood. If you have been inconvenienced by the recent path blockage from Intake Lane, please let us know, with details about how important this access path into the wood is to you, and how long you have been using the wood, via our website https://haggwood.wordpress.com/contact/ or by writing to FHW, 5 Church Lane, Dunnington, YO19 5PT. This will add weight to the evidence we can present to the City of York Council for a successful permanent resolution to the recent access issue.

The Friends have been busy working on conservation activities in the wood during the past year. This has opened up the forest floor to allow in more light and to provide habitat for attractive spreading carpets of delicate plants such as bluebells and foxgloves, for all to enjoy. Whether we can achieve so much in the future with more restricted access into the wood remains to be seen. However, we are continuing with our conservation working parties under more challenging circumstances. Our January working party will be on Thursday 9th January, so if you wish to come along and help, please meet at the Children’s Playground on Intake Lane at 9.45am.

Outside the wood in recent months, we have enjoyed impressive Autumnal colours on a pleasant visit to the Yorkshire Arboretum, and had an informative talk by Stuart Grainger of the North Yorkshire Police Rural Crime Force on Wildlife Crime, with North Yorkshire unfortunately top of the league table for many such crimes.

Our annual New Year lunch will be held at the Sports Club on Sunday 12th January, so contact poulter20@yahoo.co.uk or 0744-3597769 soon if you would like to come. Our website http://www.fohw.org.uk gives further details of all our activities.

Conservation Working Party – Saturday 7th December 2019

Our next working party is to be held on Saturday 7th December commencing at 10.00am. However, due to the current restriction on gaining access to the wood via the Intake Lane entrance we will again be using the entrance from the end of Hagg Lane next to Cottage Plantation.

Any volunteer who travels by car we would advise you to park at the Children’s Play Park at the start of Intake Lane by 9.45am. If you normally walk into the wood could you also meet here at 9.45am.  We will then drive in a limited number of our cars to Cottage Plantation, where the Forestry Commission has arranged for us to park, and then walk into Hagg Wood along the public path.

We will again be working in the Millennium area of the wood and all the necessary tools will be provided.  Please bring gloves if you can, and wear stout shoes or wellies.

Before commencing work we will be given a talk by the Forestry Commission Volunteer Co-ordinator, detailing the task to be carried out, the tools to be used and how to use them.

The Grapevine Parish Magazine entry for December 2019

Like many local residents, the Friends of Hagg Wood are very unhappy that access into Hagg Wood along the track from Intake Lane has been blocked. Our group was formed in 1996 to ensure public access into and within the wood when the Government threatened to sell it. We successfully campaigned to prevent the ‘sell-off’ and at the same time we put in two Public Right of Way Claims with the City of York Council to have the footpaths into the wood recognised on the Definitive Map.  Footpath claims were originally made by Kexby Parish Council in the early 1950s but unfortunately they have still not been fully acted upon. The fact that the Parish has moved from the East Riding County Council to North Yorkshire County Council and then City of York Unitary Authority has not helped. The City of York Council has recently agreed to a make progress by the end of February 2020.

In recent weeks there has been a change in ownership of the path from Intake Lane into Hagg Wood which has resulted in the usual entrance to the wood being blocked. One resident described Hagg Wood with its local access as being the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Dunnington and we know many other residents hold it dear.

If you are unhappy about the path blockage, please let us know via our website https://haggwood.wordpress.com/contact/ with details about your use and for how long, and how important this access path is to you, or by writing to FHW, 5 Church Lane, Dunnington, YO19 5PT. This will add weight to the evidence we can present to the City of York Council for a successful permanent resolution to the access issue. We will not rest until this matter is resolved.

On a merrier note, we now have our enticing menu for our traditional New Year Lunch at Dunnington Sports Club on Sunday 12th January, available via our website on http://www.fohw.org.uk/nylunchmenu20.pdf or by contacting Brian by 18th December on 07443 597769 or via poulter20@yahoo.co.uk . All welcome to attend – the more the merrier, let’s keep up our spirits.

New Year Walk & Lunch – Sunday 12th January 2020

Brighten up the dark days of winter by joining us for our now traditional New Year Lunch, again this year at the Dunnington Sports Centre, with an optional woodland walk beforehand to refresh your appetite. Meet at 11am outside the Children’s Play Area on Intake Lane for the walk, or at 1pm for a drink before the lunch at 1.30pm at the Sports Centre. We need to book you a place at the lunch, so please let Brian know on 0744-3597769 or on poulter20@yahoo.co.uk by 18th December to book your place and your menu choice.

MENU
£20.95 per head

Please select a Starter, Main Dish and Dessert from the following Menu choices:

STARTERS
Soup of the Day
Fresh Chilled Melon with Summer Berries (v)

MAINS
Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding
Loin of Pork in a Cider Sauce with Apples & Sage

Vegetarian option available

All Served with a Selection of Seasonal Vegetables

DESSERTS
Fruit Crumble
Raspberry Pavlova

Coffee and Mints

 

Very productive Working Party – 16 November 2019

A very good and enjoyable Working Party was held on Saturday 16 November, which achieved a lot, especially given the circumstances affecting access.

Many thanks to all the volunteers involved and to the Forestry Commission for their support in arranging for our tools to be transported into the wood.

hwwp7_16Nov19
At the refreshment break
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The attack on the rhododendron
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Thinning the silver birches
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I think I need a rest

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Our next working party will be held on Saturday 7th December

Conservation Work Party – Saturday 16th November 2019

Our next working party is to be held on Saturday 16th November commencing at 10.00am.  However, due to the current restriction on gaining access to the wood via the Intake Lane entrance we will be using the entrance from Hagg Lane. We have arranged with Forestry Commission that we will be able to park up to 2 cars with our equipment in Cottage Plantation and then walk into the wood along the public path.

Any volunteer who travels by car we would advise you to park at the Children’s Play Park at the start of Intake Lane by 9.50am.  If you normally walk into the wood could you also meet here at 9.50am.  Lifts will be made available to transport you to Cottage Plantation.

We will be working in the Millennium area of the wood.  All the necessary tools are provided.  Bring gloves if you can, and wear stout shoes or wellies.

Access to Hagg Wood – Statement from Dunnington Parish Council 4th November 2019

There has been much speculation in respect of the situation regarding the recent closure of the track from Intake Lane into Hagg Wood which has been open and used for many years by the residents of Dunnington. The action has raised a considerable amount of emotion and feelings within the community who see it as a valuable loss to residents. The track and Hagg Wood is in Kexby Parish.

This statement is made in full knowledge of the facts and with the co-operation of the new owners of the track in order to put the record straight.

The owner of the track has recently sold, separately, two fields adjacent to the track which also incorporates the track. This means that the first part of the track from Intake Lane is now owned by one party and the other part leading on to Hagg Wood is owned by another party. On completion of the sale the new owners were advised by their solicitors to close the track until such time as an outstanding access right of way matter was resolved and also to avoid any potential insurance liability issues. The track was subsequently closed on Sunday 13 October 2019 and a Private Land/No Public Right of Way notice posted on the gate at each end of the track and the gates locked.

This matter has been outstanding since 1997 when an application seeking to record a footpath between Kexby bridleway 8 and Kexby footpath, Hagg Wood, York was lodged with the local authority. The inaction of the City of York Council to deal with this matter over two decades has been a major factor in the current situation. In a letter received from the City of York Council dated 22 July 2019 they have acknowledged that this matter is still outstanding and will now be dealt with following a critical Local Government Ombudsman report into the way that the City of York Council’s Public Rights of Way function has been dealing with these types of applications.
See link to Ombudsman’s report: https://www.lgo.org.uk/decisions/transport-and-highways/rights-of-way/18-010-841#point1

The City of York Council has stated that they expect the application to be determined no later than 28 February 2020. If they decide to make an order they will do so as soon as reasonably practical after 28 February 2020.

In the meantime the track will remain closed, although the Ward Councillors are looking at the possibility of arranging a meeting with all interested parties to ascertain whether anything can be done to address the situation on a temporary basis until such time as the matter has been determined.

Updates will be provided as and when any further information becomes available.