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Making Trespass a Crime Again

£10,000 grant has been awarded by the Peak District
TRESPASS TRAIL PROJECT FOR HAYFIELD
Hayfield is about to get some permanent installations in the village to acknowledge that this is where the historic 1932 Kinder Mass Trespass started and ended.  

MAKING TRESPASS A CRIME AGAIN

 

The Government is planning to make trespass a criminal offence under the Anti-Social Behaviour Bill currently before Parliament, claimed a leading countryside campaigner at the first-ever Spirit of Kinder Day on Saturday (April 27).

Kate Ashbrook, general secretary of the Open Spaces Society, said: "The Bill threatens to make trespass a criminal offence by creating public spaces protection orders – in fact, exclusion orders – applied to places like open country and village greens, where the public currently has the right of recreation.”

The event was held at New Mills Town Hall just across the road from the place where 81 years ago, six ramblers were first incarcerated following the celebrated Kinder Scout Mass Trespass. Five were later imprisoned, not for trespass but for public order offences.

Kate also accused the Government of being "driven by development dogma”, and of "a piece-by-piece dismantling of the planning system”, with potentially- disastrous effects on previously protected areas such as village greens and national parks.

"National parks are certainly not safe,” claimed Kate, "The Growth and Infrastructure Act undermines the duty of public bodies to have regard to national park purposes. Neither are our 13 National Trails, which guarantee access to the best of our wild country but which the Government is proposing to hand over to local trails partnerships.”

Kate finally made an impassioned call for renewed campaigning, reporting path problems, lobbying councillors and MPs to get across the huge benefits of outdoor activities for health and the economy; working together to get a better deal for walkers, riders and cyclists, and learning from the Kinder trespassers’ legacy.

She also launched the Friends of Kinder Trespass membership group, organised by the Kinder Visitor Centre Group of Hayfield, which already has members such as Sir Chris Bonington and Lord Hattersley and has long-term plans for a trespass visitor centre in the village. A programme of the 60thanniversary event, signed by trespass leader Benny Rothman, will be auctioned on the group’s website (www.kindertrespass.com) to raise funds.

Other speakers were Terry Howard, chairman of the Kinder & High Peak Advisory Committee; Keith Warrender, who gave an illustrated history of the trespass, and Jon Stewart, manager of the National Trust’s Peak District estate, who reflected on the Trust’s 30 years of ownership of Kinder Scout.

The event, attended by over 300 people, finished on a musical note, with Boff Whalley, founder member of the former anarcho-punk-pop band Chumbawamba, singing the band’s tribute to the Mass Trespass, You Can, accompanied by accordionist Phil Moody. The Chapel-en-le-Frith Male Voice Choir finally led the traditional singing of The Manchester Rambler.

Calling All Ramblers- Spirit of Kinder Day 27th April 2013

CALLING ALL RAMBLERS FROM MANCHESTER

(AND CHAPEL) WAY

The Chapel-en-le-Frith Male Voice Choir will again lead the singing of The Manchester Rambler at the first Spirit of Kinder Day at New Mills Town Hall on Saturday, April 27. The event, which starts at 2.30pm, is free and open to all.

They will be joined by Boff Whalley, founder member of the former alternative pop band Chumbawamba, who will sing the band’s tribute to the Mass Trespass, You Can, from their 2005 album "A Singsong and a Scrap” accompanied by accordion player Phil Moody.

The Chapel choir was an enormous hit when they performed the 80th anniversary celebrations at Edale last year. Chairman Geoff Read said: "The whole choir is very enthusiastic about the occasion and honoured to be associated with it.”

Roly Smith, chairman of the Kinder 80 Committee, explained: "Members of the KHPAC decided that the enthusiasm engendered by the 80th anniversary celebrations last year should not be allowed to wane, and that the event should become an annual one, to keep the spirit of Kinder and the trespass alive.”

The main speaker at New Mills will be the forthright Ramblers president and Open Spaces Society general secretary, Kate Ashbrook. Other speakers will be Terry Howard, chairman of the Kinder & High Peak Advisory Committee; Keith Warrender, publisher of The Battle for Kinder Scout, and Jon Stewart, manager of the National Trust’s Peak District estate, which includes the iconic Kinder Scout.

Kate Ashbrook will also launch the Friends of Kinder Trespass membership group, organised by the Kinder Visitor Centre Group of Hayfield, which has long-term plans for a trespass visitor centre in the village. 

John Harvey, chairman of KVCG: said: "Our campaign has already been endorsed by people like Sir Chris Bonington, Lord (Roy) Hattersley and Kate Ashbrook. We now need the general public to join us. We hope to get support from some of the millions of keen walkers and outdoor pursuits enthusiasts who are benefitting from the legacy of increased access to mountain and moorland.”

Among the organisations attending the event are the Ramblers; Sheffield Campaign for Access to Moorland; Peak & Northern Footpaths Society; British Mountaineering Council; the National Trust; Peak District National Park Authority; Peak District Mountain Rescue Organisation; Moors for the Future and Friends of the Peak District (CPRE).

Trains are available to New Mills from Manchester and Sheffield, and there will be a special Folk Train featuring the Chorlton Folk Club leaving Manchester at  11.45am, arriving at New Mills at 12.15pm.

Moors for the Future celebrate 10 years of success

"We couldn’t have done it without our partners" – that’s the resounding message from Moors for the Future, a project initiated in 2003 and still led by the PDNPA.

 

Kathy Towers of the Moors for the Future team reports on the partnership’s remarkable achievements.

This year the Moors for the Future Partnership is celebrating a decade of moorland restoration. Since securing our first Heritage Lottery Fund grant and setting to work on our very first project in 2003 with a team of only five people, we’ve grown dramatically.

 

Now we’re leading one of the largest moorland conservation projects in Europe with a team of 20 full-time employees and 60 casual and volunteer workers.

Crucial to our success so far are the partnerships we’ve forged with a whole range of local and national bodies. Without funding and support from organisations including utilities companies, conservation organisations and the Authority we quite simply wouldn’t be where we are now. And we certainly wouldn’t have notched up our first

 

10 Moorland Milestones:

 

  • Initiating and managing 30 restoration and research projects worth over £13 million
  • Creating the Moorland Centre at Edale where we are based
  • Restoring nearly 5000 acres of moorland and 6000 acres of SSSI
  • Spreading 40 million beads of Sphagnum moss
  • Clocking up 7500 volunteer hours
  • Planting 40,000 trees
  • Laying 140 miles of geojute to stabilise bare peat
  • Producing 15 award-winning Audio Trails of the moors
  • Advising peatland restoration projects as far afield as Tibet and the Falklands
  • Planting 250,000 moorland plants

We’d like to thank everyone who has played a part in helping us restore the most degraded upland landscape in Europe.

The Spirit of Kinder lives on


SPIRIT OF KINDER LIVES ON


The first in what is hoped will be an annual celebration of Kinder Scout and the Mass Trespass will be held at New Mills Town Hall on Saturday, April 27 2013.
 
The Kinder & High Peak Advisory Group has decided that such was the enthusiasm engendered by the 80th anniversary celebrations last year,  the event should become annual to keep the spirit of Kinder and the trespass alive.
 
Kinder 80 group chairman Roly Smith said: "The amount of interest in our event last year convinced us that we should have an annual event to keep this tremendous interest going.  So we are proposing an annual Spirit of Kinder Day, the first of which will take place at New Mills on April 27, close to the 81st anniversary of the trespass.
 
"It is envisaged that this annual event will take place at different venues in and around the Peak every year, building up to the next major anniversary in 2022.”
 
The main speaker at New Mills will be the Ramblers president and Open Spaces Society secretary Kate Ashbrook. Keith Warrender, publisher of The Battle for Kinder Scout book, will also give an illustrated talk on the history of the trespass and Jon Stewart, manager of the National Trust’s Peak District estate which includes Kinder Scout, will reflect on the Trust’s 30 years of ownership of the iconic mountain.


Among the organisations expected to attend are the Ramblers (National, Sheffield and Manchester); Sheffield Campaign for Access to Moorland; Peak & Northern Footpath Society; British Mountaineering Council; the National Trust;  Peak District National Park Authoity; Peak District Mountain Rescue Organisation; Moors for the Future, Friends of the Peak District (CPRE) and Mosaic community champions.
 
The occasion will also mark the launch of a Friends of Kinder Trespass membership organisation by the Kinder Visitor Centre Group, of Hayfield, which has long-term plans for a trespass visitor centre in Hayfield.
 
For more details and further information on the Spirit of Kinder Day, contact Roly Smith on 01629 812034 (roly.smith@btconnect.com) or Terry Howard on 0114 266 5438 or (tmhoward@live.co.uk).
 

Kinder Trespass Archive Project, Hayfield

Hayfield’s recently established Kinder Visitor Centre Group (KVCG) has been awarded a grant of £18,000 by the Peak District National Park’s Sustainable Development Fund (SDF). The two year funding is for the Kinder Trespass Archive Project, Hayfield, which will collect and publicise information about the 1932 Mass Trespass and the part it played in establishing National Parks and opening up access to moorland and countryside across the UK.

The project will bring together copies of contemporary articles, official records, and photographs, most of which are already archived in various different places. Oral history work will also be undertaken with any eyewitnesses or participants who are still with us – though sadly there will now be few of these. The group are hoping that families of participants will come forward with memories, letters or photographs relating to the trespass.

A key part of the strategy will be to develop a dedicated web site which, as well as making the historical collection widely accessible, will also enable the group to appeal for more historical material not yet in the public domain. The archive material will be collected by volunteers, led by specialist labour historian Professor Neville Kirk.

"We are delighted that the Sustainable Development Fund has given us this opportunity to gather information about all aspects of the Trespass and the wider access campaign” said KVCG chairman John Harvey. "The estimated 400 trespassers who set off from and returned to Hayfield were mostly from the Manchester area, but another large group from the Sheffield side started out at Edale. We are equally interested in the contribution made by both groups, and by participants in demonstrations and other trespass events over the years.”

The grant is very timely as the 80th anniversary of the mass trespass is being celebrated in April this year. The importance of what happened in 1932 was summed up by veteran politician and Derbyshire resident Roy Hattersley who was a speaker at the 75th anniversary celebrations, organized by the late Sir Martin Doughty. Lord Hattersley called the trespass "the most successful direct action in British history”. He added: "If it was not for the trespass, we would not have the right to roam, nor the right to cherish, love and enjoy the Peak District hills.”

The Kinder Trespass Archive Project will also produce portable display material that can be used for talks, exhibitions and educational projects. The KVCG volunteers plan to work in partnership with local schools and many other agencies with an interest in this subject matter. Part of the remit will be to publicise guided walks to help people access the local moorlands who might otherwise not have the confidence to do so. The SDF grant will enable the KVCG group to pay for a professional development worker to coordinate the project and the volunteers.

The longer term aim of the Kinder Visitor Centre Group is to raise funds to establish a permanent visitor centre in Hayfield. "The Mass Trespass is an iconic heritage topic of national and regional importance, and merits being developed into a significant visitor attraction” says John Harvey. "The proposed centre will also have an important role in promoting current access opportunities, and in raising awareness about environmental issues affecting our local moorlands. KVCG envisage that the centre will attract extra visitors into Hayfield village, which should help to sustain local businesses. It will be a hub for village information, for voluntary work opportunities, and for other local heritage initiatives.

The SDF grant application was seen as a re-application for a grant of the same amount previously approved for Hayfield Parish Council in 2010. The new Parish council elected in May 2011 decided not to go ahead with a project to turn part of their premises into a Heritage Centre. They also returned two other grants, a total of £96,000, on the grounds that they did not think the particular premises were suitable for the purpose. They did however approve in principle the establishment of a heritage centre elsewhere in the village independently of the Parish council.

"Most of the KVCG committee members were involved in that earlier round of successful grant applications” said John Harvey. "We were extremely disappointed when the new Council abandoned the project. However, with this SDF grant, we are on our way back. It has given us the start we need to achieve our long term goal.”

Viva El Trespass

The vigorous hand-clapping and syncopated rhythms of the Spanish flamenco rang out across the unlikely setting of the cloughs and groughs of the peaty wastes of Kinder Scout.

This surreal moment took place on Wednesday 5 Aug 2009, when a group of 40 Spanish walkers followed the famous 1932 mass trespass route onto Kinder, led by members of the Chapel-en-le-Frith Ramblers Club.

Kinder Flamenco

'A Desalambrar' is a group of trespassers based in the Andalusian city of Córdoba in southern Spain, who are bravely fighting the same fight as Benny Rothman and his companions did nearly 80 years ago in Derbyshire.

The event was organised after trespass expert and local writer Roly Smith of Bakewell was contacted by Patrick Philpott, the English president of the Spanish group, who was organising a week-long walking holiday for the group in the Peak District.

Patrick explained: "The situation in Andalusia is very similar to that which existed in Derbyshire in 1932; only it’s not the Duke of Devonshire who is the problem, it’s the Duke of Westminster.” Apparently, Britain’s richest man owns an enormous estate in the Castilla-La Mancha region north of Córdoba where King Juan Carlos often goes hunting, and is renowned, as he did in the Forest of Bowland before the CROW Act, for turning away walkers.

So A Desalambrar (the name means "fence-cutters”) regularly trespass armed with wire and bolt-cutters, are fined, report blocked off tracks, research rights-of-way, and organise protest marches. They now have thousands of supporters (one member of the Kinder group was from Portugal) and they wanted to come and see where the trespass movement had begun.

Antonio and PlaqueLeader of the group, Antonio Blanco, was thrilled to visit Bowden Bridge Quarry, above Hayfield, where the 1932 trespassers had congregated and to see the plaque set up in 1982 to commemorate the occasion. "We had a wonderful day,” said Antonio. "The cool and damp English weather was just great for us, because at this time of the year the temperatures in Córdoba are well over 100 deg. but everything here is so lush and green. The waterfalls in William Clough were just wonderful.

"But we also learned so much about the heroes of 1932 along the way, and we want to continue our links with the Chapel ramblers now we have made contact.”

Brian Bethune, chairman of the Chapel Ramblers, was equally pleased with the event. "We normally walk on a Wednesday somewhere in the Peak, but this was a really special occasion and one which we’ll never forget.”

The walk, which was led by secretary Tom James, went up from Hayfield via the Bowden Bridge quarry (where the 1932 trespass is commemorated by a plaque unveiled in 1982), up William Clough to Ashop Head, Kinder Downfall, Kinder Low and down via Oaken Clough.

The impromptu flamenco took place on the 2,077ft/633m summit of the walk at Kinder Low. Two girls in the group broke into the dance, accompanied by much hand-clapping and encouragement, and attracting huge cheers. The Chapel Ramblers gamely responded with Ewan MacColl’s trespass anthem of 'The Manchester Rambler'.

The Spanish group presented Roly with a beautifully-engraved silver plaque to commemorate their visit, from the "Spanish fence-busters” saluting "the memory of the Kinder Scout Mass Trespass heroes” which it is hoped can be placed in the Sett Valley Trail Visitor Centre in Hayfield. Plans are already afoot for a return visit to Spain by the Chapel Ramblers in April 2010.