Contrasting farms in Raisdale

Ventured further afield than ever in the past nine weeks and came across this sheltered dale still clothed in bluebells.

This lovely beck has no name although the dale is mapped as Raisdale, as is its sibling dale, which is actually drained by Raisdale Beck. Must be confusing for the postman.

Beak Hills

I passed through two farms which highlighted the contrasting attitudes to the use of the Public Rights of Way network during this coronavirus crisis.

In east Raisdale at Beak Hills Farm, a kissing gate had the notice “NO ACCESS TO FARMYARD DUE TO COVID-19”.

In west Raisdale at Staindale, the farmer had attached a bottle of sanitizer and a polite request for users of the footpath to use it.


I found the Beak Hills notice both intimidating and confusing. A landowner has no authority to close a Public Right of Way. It is not clear whether the footpath actually goes through the “farmyard”.

I anxiously passed by expecting a confrontation, but nobody challenged me.

Now I appreciate folks’ fears in these difficult times but object to attempts to imply a Public Right of Way is closed. If the farmer was that concerned then I am sure a diversion around the farm could easily have been offered.

Staindale, on the other hand, has provided a sensible solution that respects the rights of the users who in turn will respect the farmer and his family.
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