Damaged historic bridleway to be restored

Unhappy residents at the bridleway in Lumbutts village
Unhappy residents at the bridleway in Lumbutts village

Work to restore a damaged historic rural bridleway path in a Pennines hamlet is set to begin.

A row broke out between Lumbutts villagers and Incredible Farm (IF), which is now based there, when the path, a historic packhorse route above Todmorden, was left in a very poor state after gravel was spread on it to enable some vehicular access.

Residents had claimed Calderdale Council had told IF it must restore the bridleway to its previous state but the historic stone setts were scratched when it was scraped up and removed.

Upper Stoodley Residents Association had also said it had multi-faceted concerns about the farm, including any formal planning process.

For its part IF’s trustees apologised unreservedly for disruption caused to walkers and horse riders created by lengthy works involved in rebuilding the farm at the Healey Dam site.

In terms of the stone setts trustees had followed advice given by the council in December and had been seeking further advice. They were also aware more effort could have been made to explain the farm’s aims and activities.

Updating the situation, Calderdale Council’s Assistant Director for Strategic Infrastructure, Steven Lee, said: “We take all concerns very seriously and are looking into the issues raised about the packhorse footpath near Stoodley Pike.

“We will continue to monitor the situation with the site and will take steps to address the issues where appropriate.

“We are due to start our work on carefully restoring the bridleway surface and repairing the drainage on site next week.”