7:00am Friday 30th May 2014
By Alistair Shand
Action is being taken to open-up an historic Keighley footpath that has been blocked for years.
Bradford Council has issued a so-called Section 143 notice, ordering the landowner to remove obstructions in Becks Road, Keighley.
It follows a long campaign by councillors and residents, who claim the right of way – linking Oakworth Road with the Fell Lane area – has been illegally blockaded.
District councillor Jan Smithies, whose Keighley West ward includes the route, said she was pleased action is being taken, but is sorry the council had been forced to resort to issuing a notice.
“It is a shame negotiations have come to nothing, but I welcome the fact that hopefully we will now get this obstruction moved,” she added.
“I have been lobbied by residents about this for a long time, and have been pressing for something to be done.”
Coun Smithies said the land-owner will now be given until June 30 to clear the footpath and, if no action is taken, the council will be able to remove the obstruction and recover expenses.
Keighley town councillor, Peter Corkindale, has also campaigned for action.
“It’s taken a long time but I’m absolutely delighted that at last something is being done,” he said.
“Having the footpath open again will make things a lot easier for people wanting to walk between the sorting office area and Fell Lane.
“Quite a lot of residents have been concerned about this, and they will be pleased the council is acting.”
The Keighley News highlighted the campaign for action last October. Bradford Council’s rights of way department was being accused by some of doing nothing to resolve the issue.
Dumping had allegedly taken place at the top of the path and gates erected.
The council this week confirmed it had issued a Section 143 notice, but declined to comment further or reveal who the landowner is.
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