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Country News - 2004

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Pennine bridleway edges towards Dales - just

Friday 28 May 2004

ANOTHER 73 miles of the horse-riders' equivalent of the Pennine Way will edge into Yorkshire today – but will not reach the Dales in the near future thanks to a long-standing row in the tiny hamlet of Selside, near Settle.

The Pennine Bridleway, which will eventually provide a trail for horse riders, mountain bikers and walkers from the Derbyshire Peak District almost to Hadrian's Wall, was the brainchild of the late Lady Mary Towneley, the then wife of the Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire.

But the plan led to a spirited dispute between the two "first ladies" of Lancashire and Yorkshire when the Settle councillor Beth Graham, who was then chairman of North Yorkshire County Council, took up the case when a handful of Selside residents objected to the plan because, they said, passing horses would disturb their peace and quiet.

That dispute took years to solve and a route was eventually approved by the Yorkshire Dales National Park – but means that the opening of the Dales section of the 350-mile trail is well behind schedule.

Today, the 73-mile new section will be opened to riders to Summit, near Rochdale, on the Lancashire-Yorkshire border. The Sport England Lottery Fund has granted £1.8 million towards work on the new section.


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