Let’s start with the good news. Herts County Council (HCC) has recently mowed and waymarked the public footpath (Bishop’s Stortford FP001) between Dane O’Coys and the A120 underpass. This has made a huge difference and will hopefully encourage walkers to use this footpath rather than creating new paths through Hoggates Wood. We have asked HCC if they could add this section of footpath to their bi-annual mowing rota.
We have also been informed that HCC is planning to improve the surface of this footpath just north of Dane O’Coys where it enters Ash Grove. This section of footpath gets very wet every winter and using S106 money from the developers the work is aiming to address this longstanding problem. No start date has been confirmed
Now for the bad news. Despite assurances to the contrary when this development was at the initial planning stage, we have been advised that an application has been submitted to HCC for Bishop’s Stortford FP002 to be closed to the public for an initial 6 months. However, this is likely to be extended to at least October 2023. Unfortunately, as we have found on the St James’ Park development these dates can never be relied on and closures can be extended further. The closure is to facilitate major infrastructure work that will take place on the line of the footpath. I suspect this relates to the construction of a new road junction that will give site access from the A120. No diversion route has been put forward by the developers.
We have also noted that the developers appear to have temporarily closed a section of Bishop’s Stortford BR008 without the prior approval from HCC. The matter has been reported to HCC who are investigating.