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Right of way on private road - help?

gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
edited January 2016 in Commuting chat
Hi all,

basically there is a road to access our business park which is (was) only for bikes and buses. The location is below (you can see it better via Streetview)

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/52%C2%B011'08.9%22N+0%C2%B011'46.3%22E/@52.1858058,0.1956548,19z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x0?hl=en

basically I have always cycled through it, even with the bollard, now they have removed the white paint with the bike painted, although the signs remain. Now apparently there is going to be a barrier installed, and the site maintenance are saying that only buses will be able to go through it, and that bikes will have to use the path (which is narrow and shared with pedestrians) and to add insult to injury has got a few signs making it very difficult to use.

So basically, have I got the right to cycle through the road? am I doing anything illegal by doing so?
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  • If it's private property and not a designated bridleway or cycle route then you don't have a right to use it AFAIK. But you can always just wheel your bike past the barrier and continue?
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    If it's private property and not a designated bridleway or cycle route then you don't have a right to use it AFAIK. But you can always just wheel your bike past the barrier and continue?

    it is used by the local stagecoach buses, and it was (still is maybe) used by bikes as some signs say it is to be used by bikes and buses only.

    I remember member "diy" saying something about this matter, I don't really know if this road qualifies as a highway, I basically want to challenge them me having to use that pathetic pavement...
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  • I would probably bring this up with your employer/land owner.
    Your employer should encourage cycling and make it simple and convenient: riding in will make you more productive, punctual and happy while not taking up a car park space.
    On the top of that the land owner should please the clients who are paying a large rent to be there.
    Out of interest which one of the businesses you are working for? I have a friend/colleague working for ARM in that park.
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    edited January 2016
    I would probably bring this up with your employer/land owner.
    Your employer should encourage cycling and make it simple and convenient: riding in will make you more productive, punctual and happy while not taking up a car park space.
    On the top of that the land owner should please the clients who are paying a large rent to be there.
    Out of interest which one of the businesses you are working for? I have a friend/colleague working for ARM in that park.

    Thanks.
    I work for XXX. I think my employer is happy that I bike to work but when I brought this up to our facilities manager he was not too bothered about the fact that they expected me to use that stupid, narrow and dangerous pavement for cycling. The managing company for the site were quite rude and were telling me to get off my bike and walk basically.

    I would prefer to have the law on my side, if possible, and then let me know that they should abide by it.
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  • gbsahne001gbsahne001 Posts: 1,962
    Does it make much of a difference continuing up to the end of the road and entering the park / hospital grounds at that point?
  • thistle_thistle_ Posts: 4,643
    Cambridgeshire County Council's map says it's not an adopted road. It's common for roads on business parks not to be adopted and made rights of way, however there is usually a sign put up saying "you can use this road but it's not a right of way and we have no intention of making it so".

    If you've been using it for a long time, it can be declared a right of way but you have to submit proof going back many years and it takes ages.

    Do you know why they are swapping the bollard for a barrier? Are the bollards too difficult to maintain? Are cars/motorbikes somehow getting around them? Are the bus drivers complaining about cyclists on the road?

    If you can rubbish the argument for installing the barrier, you'll be saving them money ;)
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    Cambridgeshire County Council's map says it's not an adopted road. It's common for roads on business parks not to be adopted and made rights of way, however there is usually a sign put up saying "you can use this road but it's not a right of way and we have no intention of making it so".

    If you've been using it for a long time, it can be declared a right of way but you have to submit proof going back many years and it takes ages.

    Do you know why they are swapping the bollard for a barrier? Are the bollards too difficult to maintain? Are cars/motorbikes somehow getting around them? Are the bus drivers complaining about cyclists on the road?

    If you can rubbish the argument for installing the barrier, you'll be saving them money ;)

    They are getting rid of the bollard because it is difficult to maintain, it has been out of action for a really long time and I have seen several repair teams come and go and it is still not working hence why they have decided to move to a barrier. I have many years of GPS data that prove that I have used that road.

    I think the problem stems from the bollard being broken and difficult to repair / maintain and cars using that entrance as a rat run and they want it to fix it. Not sure if bus drivers have ever complained (when it was still a cycle path) but I've had a couple of close encounters with buses as they usually speed through this section.

    At the moment there is a No entry red sign that reads only buses and cycles underneath. I imagine they will be changing that sign.
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  • xbnmxbnm Posts: 116
    Have you checked to see what if anything was included in their planning permission for the development about the use of the access road.
  • Ian.BIan.B Posts: 732
    As said above, I don't think you're going to get anywhere arguing about public rights of way, though the point about checking any planning conditions is a good one.

    Looking at streetview from the other end you can see the whole stretch. TBH it's only a few yards and I'd be surprised if anyone has any actual intention of enforcing a ban on cyclists - I'd guess they're just interested in the cheapest solution to replacing the bollard to stop motor vehicles. Frankly I think your best bet is just to accept you'll have to hop onto the pavement to skirt the barrier (before immediately rejoining the carriageway) and otherwise keep quiet about it. If you kick up an unholy fuss with employers, managing agents, landowners, the council or whoever you're just going to raise the profile of it and make an issue where there (probably) isn't one, and get them into an entrenched position where they try and enforce a ban on cycles using the carriageway; if no one makes a fuss everyone will just carry on as before, with the minor irritation of having to go round a barrier rather than a bollard.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    forgiveness is easier to get than permission?

    What's the punishment if they catch you riding on the road? The worst I'd expect would be a less of a defence if you were in a collision with a bus - but other than that, are they going to put security guards there? I doubt it - that's why they're putting a barrier up ...
    Skirt round the barrier and hop back on the road - if anyone shouts at you then hop off the bike and walk the pavement ...
    I suppose they _could_ just about feasibly get you up on a disaplinery hearing .. but not till after a warning ...
  • PufftmwPufftmw Posts: 1,941
    Silly situation in my office whereby we can have bikes in the office (2nd floor) but we can't use the lift/stairs to get them there according to the managing agent. It seems similar.

    Somehow my bike always manages to make it up and down. No-one gets upset and no-one gets hurt. Are they really going to push the point of your riding on a piece of road? I'm guessing that you could walk on it no problem, so what is the difference?
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Does it make much of a difference continuing up to the end of the road and entering the park / hospital grounds at that point?

    Exactly what I was thinking. A case of "what would you do if neither the bus lane nor footpath actually existed"?

    There may even be a new Strava segment in it! :lol:
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  • I think you are working yourself up into a bit of a foam about nothing here. Worst case would be to go down to the Cambridge Road entrance - which doesn't seem much of a diversion coming from either direction.

    But the reality is likely to be that the barrier will be up half the time and a minor inconvenience when it isn't. I mean, if that's the best entrance for you its, what, 200m to your office, less maybe?
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    I do understand it is a first world problem, don't worry 8)

    But I have been using said road for over 8 years with no issues, apart from cars that have used it as a rat run and a few careless buses. There is also a Strava segment on that road and I am sitting 3rd, if that counts :evil: :twisted:

    My main complain is that they want us to use the clearly unsuitable and I was already told off for using the road when bikes were still allowed (I had a bit of an argument with one of site managers a while back when I mentioned cars were using it as a rat run and him saying that it wasn't a cycle route and pointing at the pavement, me saying pointing them to the signs saying buses and cycles). I just think they want to make life for cyclists as hard as possible.

    Cambridge Road is not really an option as it is super busy and if it isn't 60mph traffic there is a big fat queue of traffic. If neither the footpath or the buslane existed I would probably use Cambridge Road, but I would prefer to leave that as last resort for what I said before.

    The only roads to access the site are the one via Cambridge Road and the Bus/Cycle lane on Fulbourn old drift. The bit at the end is not really an entrance if you look in Streetview.
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  • I do understand it is a first world problem, don't worry 8)

    But I have been using said road for over 8 years with no issues, apart from cars that have used it as a rat run and a few careless buses. There is also a Strava segment on that road and I am sitting 3rd, if that counts :evil: :twisted:

    My main complain is that they want us to use the clearly unsuitable and I was already told off for using the road when bikes were still allowed (I had a bit of an argument with one of site managers a while back when I mentioned cars were using it as a rat run and him saying that it wasn't a cycle route and pointing at the pavement, me saying pointing them to the signs saying buses and cycles). I just think they want to make life for cyclists as hard as possible.

    Cambridge Road is not really an option as it is super busy and if it isn't 60mph traffic there is a big fat queue of traffic. If neither the footpath or the buslane existed I would probably use Cambridge Road, but I would prefer to leave that as last resort for what I said before.

    The only roads to access the site are the one via Cambridge Road and the Bus/Cycle lane on Fulbourn old drift. The bit at the end is not really an entrance if you look in Streetview.
    You can enter the hospital site and access yours here, no?
    https://goo.gl/maps/uxLgQ34KmxB2

    I mean, obviously the Strava segment is a gonner, but life goes on.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Hmmm, according to RwGPS

    Route from Fulbourne Old Drift to IBM via bus lane = 0.2 miles
    Route via Fulbourne Old Drift to railway line to IBM = 0.5 miles.

    0.3miles extra. Do you hate cycling that much?! :lol:
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  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    I do understand it is a first world problem, don't worry 8)

    But I have been using said road for over 8 years with no issues, apart from cars that have used it as a rat run and a few careless buses. There is also a Strava segment on that road and I am sitting 3rd, if that counts :evil: :twisted:

    My main complain is that they want us to use the clearly unsuitable and I was already told off for using the road when bikes were still allowed (I had a bit of an argument with one of site managers a while back when I mentioned cars were using it as a rat run and him saying that it wasn't a cycle route and pointing at the pavement, me saying pointing them to the signs saying buses and cycles). I just think they want to make life for cyclists as hard as possible.

    Cambridge Road is not really an option as it is super busy and if it isn't 60mph traffic there is a big fat queue of traffic. If neither the footpath or the buslane existed I would probably use Cambridge Road, but I would prefer to leave that as last resort for what I said before.

    The only roads to access the site are the one via Cambridge Road and the Bus/Cycle lane on Fulbourn old drift. The bit at the end is not really an entrance if you look in Streetview.
    You can enter the hospital site and access yours here, no?
    https://goo.gl/maps/uxLgQ34KmxB2

    I mean, obviously the Strava segment is a gonner, but life goes on.

    That door is locked in the mornings and evenings unfortunately. It is ok if I go to work late or leave early though.
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  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    Hmmm, according to RwGPS

    Route from Fulbourne Old Drift to IBM via bus lane = 0.2 miles
    Route via Fulbourne Old Drift to railway line to IBM = 0.5 miles.

    0.3miles extra. Do you hate cycling that much?! :lol:

    Sorry, I don't understand? There are only 2 entrances (4 if you count pedestrian only entries) where I am allowed to enter the site, where is this second route you are talking about? :)
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  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Hmmm, according to RwGPS

    Route from Fulbourne Old Drift to IBM via bus lane = 0.2 miles
    Route via Fulbourne Old Drift to railway line to IBM = 0.5 miles.

    0.3miles extra. Do you hate cycling that much?! :lol:

    Sorry, I don't understand? There are only 2 entrances (4 if you count pedestrian only entries) where I am allowed to enter the site, where is this second route you are talking about? :)

    Ahhh, I see now. A cunning and apparently pointless blockage to the West. Yep, screw em. Hit the pavement and provide the hospital with the occasional extra pedestrian related job or two. Serves them right (the hosp, not the pedestrians - they are collateral damage)!
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  • seajaysseajays Posts: 330
    I think gabriel959 is right to challenge it. Putting cyclists onto the pavement is also the last thing you're supposed to do when all other measures have been exhausted ( https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/9179/shared-use-routes-for-pedestrians-and-cyclists.pdf ) When they designed this in the first place they at least gave a bit of thought for cyclists. They allowed buses and cycles though, put up the relevant signs and used a "bollard" system that allowed cycles to progress through without hindrance.

    So the bollard isn't working well but you could do something else, like a "short" barrier that allows you to cycle round it for example. Have there been any serious incidents with cyclists? With all those hospitals there, you could try getting in touch with one of their local trade unions, e.g. http://unisoncambshealth.co.uk/ and see if they know anything about it. As it looks like a route many of their staff would use, they might take an interest too. (I know I would!). With these type of things one person can be ignored, but if you get lots of people on-side shouting about it, you're more likely to get a result.
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  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    I agree, where I work the Uni uses short barriers leaving enough room for cycle access when they are closed, simples as they say!
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    If they put full length barriers in - perhaps a hacksaw may be of use .... ;)
  • crumbschiefcrumbschief Posts: 3,400
    Just kill them all and laugh as you freewheel through the juices of your crushed annoyances.
  • The Barrier may break more often than the bollards. Hammersmith bride has a barrier which is almost always broken.
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    So I pointed them out to the government guidelines, I pointed them out to the 9 years of nearly problem free access, pointed them that the new pavement is dangerous, full of sings, beams and narrow... I also requested for them to make the barrier a bit shorter so cyclists can go around it...

    This was their answer:

    Gabriel

    At present we have no plans to shorten the barrier. Please see the response from XXXXXXX below.

    I will review two weeks after installation.

    Regards

    XXXXX

    Hi XXXXX

    By putting the barrier in, this will stop car issues at this end of the site and it will also make road users (including cyclists) to slow down making it a safer environment.

    I suggest we continue as planned. Any issues I am happy to discuss.

    Kind Regards


    I am aware that this post has been discussed by other users of said entrance, I would suggest these silent viewers to start emailing their facilities managers to get some kind of traction.
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  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    "Ahhh, I see now. A cunning and apparently pointless blockage to the West. Yep, screw em. Hit the pavement and provide the hospital with the occasional extra pedestrian related job or two. Serves them right (the hosp, not the pedestrians - they are collateral damage)!"

    If you're referring to the Fulbourn hospital your idea is a non starter. It only caters to those with mental health issues, not pedestrians covered in tyre marks, blood and grease. They'd have to be hobbling a couple of miles to Addenbrookes :D
  • thistle_thistle_ Posts: 4,643
    (I had a bit of an argument with one of site managers a while back when I mentioned cars were using it as a rat run and him saying that it wasn't a cycle route and pointing at the pavement, me saying pointing them to the signs saying buses and cycles).
    Ask if they can put in a drop kerb either side of the barrier, as that's clearly how the site manager wants you to negotiate the bollard?
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    (I had a bit of an argument with one of site managers a while back when I mentioned cars were using it as a rat run and him saying that it wasn't a cycle route and pointing at the pavement, me saying pointing them to the signs saying buses and cycles).
    Ask if they can put in a drop kerb either side of the barrier, as that's clearly how the site manager wants you to negotiate the bollard?

    No, they want us to use the shared pedestrian pass on the side, which is full of signs including posts (I count 3 signs and 4 poles, and there is a pole with a traffic light. It is all a bit poor to be honest.
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  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    You could make it into an HR issue, health and safety of the proposal if your HR dept is at all competent!

    Ask for the risk assessment!
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    edited January 2016
    You could make it into an HR issue, health and safety of the proposal if your HR dept is at all competent!

    Ask for the risk assessment!

    Good point, but my company HR dept is not exactly competent in my experience, they will look at covering their backs. It may be worth a try though.
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