Route Char Dub (Jct 407021) - Tewit How - Pass between Haycock and Scoat Fell (Jn 419027)
Area Ennerdale
Type Bridleway
Legal Users Pedestrians - Horses - Horse Riders - Cyclists
General Condition Very Poor
Legal Condition Obstructed and 'Out of Repair'
Surface Condition Boulder fields and deep vegetation.
Obstructed by fences, walls and trees
The LDNPA have neglected this route for decades, now it is in such a state they don't know what to do
Advice Impossible to use with a horse. Cyclists and Pedestrians should use the clearest route you can find, but you are on a SSSI.
The definitive line is unusable. Cyclists and Equestrians should be careful, they have been known to be prosecuted for straying off the definitive line
LDNPA Planned Action None

River Liza

Time for some of the LDNPA's most stunning work, another fine example of map making from a desk in Kendal (60 miles away). This route has has been regularly surveyed by the LDNPA and they can find no problems with it.

The LDNPA modified the route and decided to put the Bridleway over the wooden barrier and between the dry-stone wall and fence ...

if you continue along the definitive line, you have another fence to climb over, then a locked gate to climb over, then you enter a sheepfold which you have to climb out of; you exit the sheepfold in the far corner ...

then through Woundell Beck, no not across the bridge and in to the trees ...

I'm not making this up, this is where the LDNPA Rights of Way department moved the bridleway this is how competent they are

Now we go up Lingmell. This is supposed to be maintained to a standard suitable for a horse, again this is not the original route of the bridleway but again where the LDNPA decided to move it to.

The Bridleway from here up on to Lingmell and on to Tewit How has always been marked on the maps in the wrong place, Wainwright pointed out the error when it first appeared on the OS Maps, have a look in his 1960's Guide to the Western Lakes. The whole route has needed realigned, reinstated and maintained for decades.

In 2006, rather than correct the error that has been on the maps for all these years, the LDNPA chose to divert a small section of the bridleway that was obstructed by two fences (it had been obstructed by the Forestry Commission for 30 years). All the diversion does is take you round the fences and up to a point that is no use to anyone as the route forward is completely unusable. All the Statutory Consultees thought this was a marvellous diversion and would benefit everyone, the local Councils as usual got their Rubber Stamp out. Not one of the Statutory Consultees went on site and looked at the problem.

What may surprise you is that the Ramblers Association initially appeared to want the bridleway put right and this would require a site visit, then for some unknown reason the RA changed their mind and supported the diversion without even looking at the site; the RA then went in to hiding and would not explain this decision, well they don't have to. The LDNPA then used the Ramblers' Association position as the bastion of all walkers opinion to beat down other objectors, now we could accept this if the RA actually looked at the issue but when they haven't and the RA know they haven't but will not stand up and admit it, then this undermines the whole democratic consultation process, and entirely discredits the RA and does nothing to protect our Rights of Way. If the RA had stood up to be counted we could have forced the LDNPA to do the job right, instead thanks to the inaction of the RA (and the other useless Statutory Consultees) bridleway 408028 continues to be completely unusable. 

Don't kid yourself that this is a one off, it is far from it, the Ramblers' Association agreed to have the best walking route up Great Gable (FP 419029) extinguished, again when quizzed the RA went in to hiding, we did manage to save that one though. However, in the western lakes it doesn't matter how ridiculous a proposal may be the RA just seem to get their rubber stamp out and blindly continue to agree with the LDNPA.

If the Ramblers Association and the Equestrian organisations will not stand up and represent those they claim to be representing then they deserve everything they get, they deserve the lunatics in the Rights of Way departments at the LDNPA and Cumbria County Council.

The Rights of Way professionals at the LDNPA chose to ignore the big sweeping zigzag line of the original route and instead selected a route of 2 metres wide straight up the front of the fell without any consideration for all legal users of bridleways; walkers, horses, equestrians and cyclists. 

Unfortunately this route has now been confirmed by the Planning Inspectorate [November 2006].
The Planning Inspector saw that the Diversion was completely and utterly pointless as when you get to the end of the Diversion you can't go forward you are in the wrong place. The Planning Inspector's hands were tied, all his remit was to decide whether the section of the diversion was more usable than the section of definitive line which was being diverted, and it is, he could not consider anything else and so confirmed a bonkers diversion.

Anyway, onwards up to Lingmell along the confirmed diversion ...

Now you have reached the end of the Diversion you can see that it is ok for a walker, but would you really contemplate bringing a horse up that route? The legally defined route is now 2 metres wide straight up the steep fell, you can't zigzag in 2 metres. If it was a properly zigzagged route of 2 metres width then it would be more usable by equestrian, but it isn't they weren't even considered.

Once up on Lingmell some fine views can be had in to the Ennerdale valley

We have no time for that we are heading for Tewit How and Wasdale beyond.

From this point forward you will see why this Diversion has been a complete waste of public money. The Bridleway from here up to Tewit How is worse than the section that the LDNPA have just diverted round. The LDNPA couldn't care less how you are to go any further forward on your journey to Wasdale, anyway let's carry on along the bridleway and on to Tewit How.


Obviously no-one in their right mind would use this route because the Bridleway was never there. The geniuses at the LDNPA Rights of Department haven't even walked it even though they claim they have as part of their Best Value Performance Indicators for 2005/06. You don't need a GPS system 'accurate to 1 metre'  to know that the bridleway was never here. The position of the real route is approx. 100 feet higher and it is far more manageable than this, but you can not use it you have to stick to the bridleway across this SSSI.

If you are finding the going a bit tough through the waist deep heather and boulders then pedestrians can always give up here and go back down in to Deep Gill via FP 407042. For equestrian and cyclists you have no choice but onwards along the bridleway, there's more deep heather but there are less boulders.


Tewit How

Join Bridleway 419027 down in to Wasdale