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We’re cheering the Peak District National Park Authority’s decision to temporarily exclude trail-bikes, quad-bikes and 4x4s from Chapel Gate.

We’ve been calling for action to protect the centuries-old public track between Chapel-en-le-Frith and Edale as part of our Take Back the Tracks campaign.

Chapel Gate is a very special ancient packhorse route, but it’s now so devastated with deep ruts and exposed rocks that walkers, cyclists and horse-riders are going up on the adjacent environmentally sensitive land and eroding that too. It really is time something is done, so we welcome the Peak District National Park Authority’s decision.

It has placed an experimental 18 month Traffic Regulation Order on Chapel Gate in order to provide a respite from motorised traffic. This should allow time for the landscape to recover and to monitor the condition of the route through all seasons of the year. There is already clear evidence from condition surveys that erosion is a result of motor vehicles – both directly and indirectly – in terms of increased water damage and run-off.  So we would want to see the TRO being made permanent, rather than just experimental so that Chapel Gate is protected for the longer term