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 Land Access - Where do YOU stand?

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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:04 pm

An interesting question. I have driven people mad who asked me the question 'are you a farmer?' (short answer no, but where's the fun in that?).

I 'farm' on occassion. My father has a few cattle and sheep. Funnily enough he's bought a lot of calves recently, illustrating the shift back to dairy farming (calves being on the market you see).
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:13 pm

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When dairy farming was common the calves were taken from their mothers and brought up by hand, which meant that they were used to people and quite tame. Now that dairy farming has declined calves are being left with their mothers, as in the above case of the seven sucklers. Never mind the mothers, how tame are the calves?

When they are a little older they will be much more difficult to handle than hand-reared calves and more of a threat to walkers. When they have calves, they might be more dangerous than your cows, who are at least more used to people.

We almost never buy in calves - so ours are possibly less likely to be wild than yours who have been moved from farm to farm. (the pyschological effects of separation from the mother at an early age have been well documented. Wink ) Are our calves mad? The sun is shining and they are bouncing around the field like animals - unlike those housed ones that have to be hand reared...

There are also variations between breeds - pollies are quite and Limousins are quite nuts. Maybe the next step in AI (not the ibis-type!) will be to produce straws for walker-friendly cattle/cows.

Meanwhile, I think that the focus of the debate should be on whether, in principle, it's a good idea for random people to be wandering around fields where there are animals. And I don't think they should. Animals - even the domesticated types - are animals and unpredictable.

By the way, 'do you farm' and 'are you a farmer' are two very different questions...
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:27 pm

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Maybe the next step in AI (not the ibis-type!) will be to produce straws for walker-friendly cattle/cows.

I would very much like to thank Kate for the clarification.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:40 pm

Of course, the whole debate centered mainly around hill-walking, not the fields. I think the Labour proposal which sparked the whole thing off suggested that land over a certain altitude should be more accessable. I haven't heard any reports of sheep growing wilder.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 8:00 pm

... which sounded like a good proposal. Why wouldn't any other party adopt that? - make land over 150m (?) National Park or public or something..
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Thu Apr 03, 2008 8:11 pm

It was a good idea. The proposal was hijacked by the hill-walkers group though, and their attitude scuppered any good image the proposal had. A shame for Labour, who don't stray into rural affairs too often.

To be a national park the land would have to be bought. Even useless land is expensive, I daresay. Can't see the PDs blowing the proceeds of the Aer Lingus sale on a field.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:19 pm

905 wrote:
Of course, the whole debate centered mainly around hill-walking, not the fields. I think the Labour proposal which sparked the whole thing off suggested that land over a certain altitude should be more accessable. I haven't heard any reports of sheep growing wilder.

The question of land ownership is interesting. People tend to think that it is absolute, but it is qualified in all kinds of ways. For example, most landholdings have their boundary in the centre of a neighbouring road. The road authority has the right to put a road on top of the land and surface it, and it is a right of way over which people can move. However, if someone wants to put a surface water drain underneath it they need your permission. If the Council wants to put a sewer under it they can - in fact they can put a public sewer in pretty well anywhere without your permission.

If there is any kind of public service pipe crossing your land there is probably a "way leave" around it that you cant build on.

You don't own the mining rights underneath your home - check it out and you may well find someone else does.

You obviously don't own the sky over the property and you have no right to keep a view that was there when you bought the property.

Your land can be CPOd for most "public good" projects and you will only get very basic compensation.

Rights of way, both public and to particular people, can also exist over "private" land.

Until the criminal trespass law there was a fair bit of scope to enter and remain on land. When it was passed rights that Travellers had previously had to stop in certain places and that had been used for generations were wiped out overnight.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:50 pm

Goodness Cactus. You sound like a civil engineer I know.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:51 pm

905 wrote:
It was a good idea. The proposal was hijacked by the hill-walkers group though, and their attitude scuppered any good image the proposal had. A shame for Labour, who don't stray into rural affairs too often.

To be a national park the land would have to be bought. Even useless land is expensive, I daresay. Can't see the PDs blowing the proceeds of the Aer Lingus sale on a field.

Was the 150M thing a Labour proposal ?
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:57 pm

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:

Was the 150M thing a Labour proposal ?
Good question but I believe it is a Labour party policy and it's one of the best policies any party has ever had in my anarchic view.

http://www.labour.ie/policy/listing/11758603221460487.html
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:08 am

Auditor #9 wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:

Was the 150M thing a Labour proposal ?
Good question but I believe it is a Labour party policy and it's one of the best policies any party has ever had in my anarchic view.

http://www.labour.ie/policy/listing/11758603221460487.html

Yes, I like it too. It's pro people.

Except 150m seems a bit low. The Sugarloaf in Wickla is 500m to the summit.
COuld 150m possibly take in some towns ?
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:23 am

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Goodness Cactus. You sound like a civil engineer I know.

I am not a civil engineer EvotingMachine0197, I just was on a long train journey with one once.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:25 am

cactus flower wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Goodness Cactus. You sound like a civil engineer I know.

I am not a civil engineer EvotingMachine0197, I just was on a long train journey with one once.
You are more like Phoebe from Friends Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:31 am

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No money will be paid by way of compensation to the owners of access land. In turn, no owners of access land will be exposed to claims from walkers or others who suffer accidental injury while on the land
from the Labour document. Just one point.

So who will be responsible for loss or damage suffered by the landowner when gates are left open and animals get loose, lost, killed?

What about walkers with dogs and children?

What exactly is 'accidental injury'? What differentiates between an 'accidental' injury and one that arises through negligence?
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:37 am

Well they are all very important questions Kate, but the doc. Audi linked is a policy doc., not a Bill.

Access but turnstile or cattletrap could probably sort out most cases.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:50 am

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Well they are all very important questions Kate, but the doc. Audi linked is a policy doc., not a Bill.

Access but turnstile or cattletrap could probably sort out most cases.

I appreciate that, EVM, but at the same time it would seem sensible to make some reference to the wider issue of what having someone on your land actually means, as opposed to blithely assuming that it's an issue about compensation alone.

I know I sound pedantic and petulant about this (and here in the flatlands now known as Taoiseach Country Very Happy - move over Parlon, we probably wouldn't be affected anyway) but I really wonder if people have any concept of what it is to work the land when they suggest free access.

We've spent a fortune in the last number of years making the farm sheep-proof. Installing turnstiles (which the woolly buggers could probably get through anyway!) would mean narrowing gates (tractor access) or moving straining posts and possibly having to re-fence on the offchance that someone (with their dog, children, picnic basket) might want to walk through the fields where bulls and narky rams roam. It's a prospective nightmare.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:54 am

Kate P wrote:
Quote :
No money will be paid by way of compensation to the owners of access land. In turn, no owners of access land will be exposed to claims from walkers or others who suffer accidental injury while on the land
from the Labour document. Just one point.

So who will be responsible for loss or damage suffered by the landowner when gates are left open and animals get loose, lost, killed?

What about walkers with dogs and children?

What exactly is 'accidental injury'? What differentiates between an 'accidental' injury and one that arises through negligence?

It works out fine in most countries. There is a path for hundreds of miles along the Welsh coast from Fishguard - you can just get off the boat and walk south. I think the path was bought from the famers by the National Trust. The NT maintain and insure it.

There used to be Mass paths and rights of way to schools all over this area and they have been progressively obstructed. I think it is harder to walk off the road in Ireland than any country.

I think farmers should be properly paid or compensated and we should get some top class walking routes across the whole country - it would cost a damn site less than the stoopid motorways being built.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 1:06 am

Great points cactus - walking in the countryside here consists of walking on boreens or not through fields if you are nowhere near public land. It's a pure shame ! 'To School Through the Fields' has become 'To School in my Mummy's SUV' ffs

edit

On the motorways though - I often believe they could render some Regional roads less necessary or capable of being geared down into cycle-lanes or to include cycle lanes in parts of the country...
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 1:13 am

Auditor #9 wrote:
Great points cactus - walking in the countryside here consists of walking on boreens or not through fields if you are nowhere near public land. It's a pure shame ! 'To School Through the Fields' has become 'To School in my Mummy's SUV' ffs

edit

On the motorways though - I often believe they could render some Regional roads less necessary or capable of being geared down into cycle-lanes or to include cycle lanes in parts of the country...

Or even by-passed motorways - there is a great stretch of road from Cashel to Mitchelstown that is going to have nothing but tractors on it in six months time.

It has been a long day full of interesting experiences. I am off to bed to complete my recovery. Sleep
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 1:25 am

Auditor #9 wrote:
Great points cactus - walking in the countryside here consists of walking on boreens or not through fields if you are nowhere near public land. It's a pure shame ! 'To School Through the Fields' has become 'To School in my Mummy's SUV' ffs

edit

On the motorways though - I often believe they could render some Regional roads less necessary or capable of being geared down into cycle-lanes or to include cycle lanes in parts of the country...

Interesting point about the motorways.

The old N4 which has been replaced by the M4 (Mullingar, Kinnegad, etc) has been downgraded from an N road to a R road - and so the speed limit (which is pretty intensely policed) has reduced to 80km/h. The M4 has the highest toll in the country - 2.70 each way - so those who don't want to spend 100Euro plus each month have to travel more slowly (though the road is the EXACT same).

There are lots of old canal and railway routes that could do with being regenerated for walkers. There are parts of the canal at Monasterevin and Naas that are very walkable and could be improved with very little effort. They'd be a great resource for town dwellers as well as country folk because of their location.
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 1:41 am

I have a dream that some real back roads will become walkways/cycleways or slowed to such an extent that they will become comfortable to travel on by foot/bike even skateboard - i believe we should be doing our utmost to preserve those back roads for pedestrians and for children to play and tourists to tour and we should work to pave them and make them so good they're skateboard-friendly i'm not joking.

If we had slightly drier weather this would have happened a long time ago perhaps...
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:51 pm

[quote="Kate P"]
Auditor #9 wrote:
Great points cactus - walking in the countryside here consists of walking on boreens or not through fields if you are nowhere near public land. It's a pure shame ! 'To School Through the Fields' has become 'To School in my Mummy's SUV' ffs

edit

On the motorways though - I often believe they could render some Regional roads less necessary or capable of being geared down into cycle-lanes or to include cycle lanes in parts of the country...


I am just off for a quick walk along the river before the bull is let out...

I have to cross people's lands sometimes for work reasons and have always been very wary of animals, including horses - if you are on your own even a hefty nudge can be a problem. More often than not, you can't see into at least one corner of a field and are left wondering if anything cross, heavy and hairy is going to come charging over the horizon. The nearest I ever had to a real problem was not work, but walking with two children across a RoW to an old church site. A crowd of bullocks came thundering across the field down hill towards us (curiosity I think not agression). I vaguely remembered someone saying you should make yourself look big, so I turned around and made my raincoat into giant bat-wings, the lads came to a halt abruptly and slid along in the mud before stopping about a foot away.

Any advice or suggestions on animal encounters apart from run like f**ck Kate?
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PostSubject: Re: Land Access - Where do YOU stand?   Sat Apr 05, 2008 4:30 pm

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Any advice or suggestions on animal encounters apart from run like f**ck Kate?

Hmmm.

A big stick and/or a big man are useful to have close by.

I got headbutted in the autumn by one of our own cows when I was standing in a gap she wanted to get through. In my experience therefore (and as attested to by neighbours), screaming really loudly sends them packing - but you need to get your timing right, ie, before they make contact.

That or they don't actually have any intention of running away before they've let you know who's boss. Rolling Eyes
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