Here are some images of the proposed path of the track across Walshaw Moor: all taken at the weekend by the wonderful Bob Berzins.
Bob tells me ‘It is all deep peat up there and has a great wilderness feel. There is very little sign of vehicles being used so far. It would be an absolute desecration to build this road.‘.
There are four parts of the proposed track.
The southern spur makes its way north up the Walshaw Dean valley.
The route of the track is already apparently marked with white plastic marker posts in some places.
Here are some helpful measurements of peat depth next to two of those marker posts in this, rather dry-looking, part of the track.
Not so dry after all then! Deep peat.
The next section is that which crosses active blanket bog and is largely in Calderdale Council area (c600m) but partly in Pendle (c100m). This is where a timber rafted track is planned. As you might expect, this area is distinctly soggy. Have a look:
The northern spur then continues over this land:
The eastern spur:
Bob tells me that his measurements consistently give much deeper peat depths than those reported in the Catchment Restoration Plan signed off by Natural England. Maybe he is wrong – but I do wonder whether it would be a valuable exercise for Natural England to check these measurements and for Pendle and Calderdale Councils to be aware of them too. Maybe the estate were measuring in inches not centimetres? Has NE checked these measurements which form part of their agreement with the estate? If not, why not? Will NE check them now – and by now I mean in the next few days? If NE can’t manage to check these measurements then maybe we all ought to have a day out with rulers on Walshaw Moor some time soon to help them out?
Bob’s measurements will find their way to the relevant planning authorities, of that I’m sure.
As Bob says, this is a pretty wild place – why has NE signed up to a plan whose origin was to stop rotational burning on blanket bogs (which has so many loopholes that it is arguably useless) and which instead of protecting blanket bogs drives a 5km track through those blanket bogs in one of the wildest parts of northern England? This is entirely shocking.
How deep has NE sunk? Up to its neck in peat – and it’s not waving but drowning.
We wouldn’t be looking at this industrialisation of our uplands if it weren’t for the ‘sport’ of driven grouse shooting. Let’s get our politicians to end this damage – please sign Gavin Gamble’s e-petition in favour of banning driven grouse shooting.