Much of the repair work carried out under Fix the Fells has been undertaken on paths established through decades of use. These routes do not always coincide with the legal, definitive lines of the rights of way network, or what we see as green lines on Ordnance Survey Outdoor Explorer maps.
The Alignment Project aims to ensure that the path line shown on the Ordnance Survey map correlates with the path line that can be followed on the ground. While Cumbria County Council has overall responsibility for the rights of way network in the county, the National Park undertakes this work on their behalf within the Park. Any changes we make to the definitive map form the basis of the rights of way information that we give to map makers.
Also, as there is now a greater reliance on GPS navigation, we need to make sure that the map matches the ground. This allows for accurate navigation in thick fog, for example.
Ensuring that the physical works, for example stone pitching and soil inversion, are recorded legally is fundamental to the protection of our, and the Heritage Lottery Fund investment.
Some £3 million has been spent on upland path restoration. By legally recording the location of the paths, it ensures a statutory duty to look after them in the future. This protects the investment.
There are approximately 200 paths that have been ’worked on’ in the Park. These are split up into about 30 geographical ‘batch’ areas.
Come rain or shine, the fun bit for the Alignment Officer is walking each path with a GPS and recording the new line where work has taken place.
We always ask for comments before we confirm the legal changes to the path network. We inform the public about any changes we’re making through the local paper and via site notices on the fells. You may see these signs while you’re out and about in the fells. These are the handy work of a dedicated team of Fix the Fells volunteers.
If you see a figure in dark clothing, tramping the fells with a big yellow pole sticking out of her rucksack, it’s probably the Alignment Officer. Please come and say hello!
Alternatively please contact:
Fix the Fells Path Alignment Officer
Tel: 01539 792709