Agenda and minutes

Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee - Monday, 25th June, 2018 2.00 pm

Venue: City Hall, College Green, Bristol, BS1 5TR

Contact: Norman Cornthwaite 

No. Item


Election of Chair for 2018/19


Resolved – that Councillor Mike Langley be elected Chair of the Committee for the Municipal Year 2018/19.


Election of Vice Chair 2018/19


Resolved – that Councillor Peter Abraham be elected Vice-Chair of the Committee for the Municipal Year 2018/19.



Welcome, Introductions and Safety Information


Committee Membership 2018/19

Members are asked to note the Committee Membership for 2018/19:


Councillor Peter Abraham – Conservative

Councillor Don Alexander – Labour

Councillor Fi Hance – Green

Councillor Tim Kent – Lib Dem

Councillor Mike Langley – Labour

Councillor Jon Wellington – Labour

Councillor Lucy Whittle – Labour



Resolved – that the Committee Membership be noted.



Committee Terms of Reference 2018/19

The Committee is requested to note its Terms of Reference agreed by Council on 22nd May 2018.


Terms of Reference




Full Council has delegated to the Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee all functions relating to public rights of way and greens are as specified in Regulation 2 and Schedule 1 to the Local Authorities (Functions and Responsibilities) (England) Regulations 2000 (as amended) under the following provisions and any related secondary legislation:


List A – Non-Executive Functions Delegated to the Resources Directorate


1.       Functions relating to the registration of common land and town or village greens (part 1 Commons Act 2006 and the Commons Registration (England) Regulations 2008);

2.       Power to register variation of rights of common (Regulation 29 of the Commons Registration (General) Regulations 1966 (S.I. 1966/1471));

3.       Power to apply for an enforcement order against unlawful works on common land (Section 41 Commons Act 2006);

4.       Power to protect unclaimed common land and unclaimed town and village greens against unlawful interference (Section 45(2)(a) Commons Act 2006);  and

5.       Power to institute proceedings for offences in respect of unclaimed registered common land or unclaimed town or village greens (Section 45(2)(b) of the Commons Act 2006).


List B – Non-Executive Functions Delegated to the Communities  and Growth and Regeneration  Directorates


6.       Power to grant a street works license (section 50 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c.22)).

7.       Power to permit deposit of builder’s skip on highway (section 139 of the Highways Act 1980 (c.66) (“the Act”)).

8.       Duty to publish notice in respect of proposal to grant permission under section 115E of the Act (section 115E of the Act).

9.       Power to license planning, retention and maintenance of trees etc. in part of highway (Section 142 of the Act).

10.     Power to authorise erection of stiles etc. on footpaths or bridleways (section 147 of the Act).

11.     Power to license works in relation to buildings etc. which obstruct the highway (Section 169 of the Act).

12.     Power to consent to temporary deposits or excavations in streets (section 171 of the Act).

13.     Power to dispense with obligation to erect hoarding or fence (section 172 of the Act).

14.     Power to restrict the placing of rails, beams etc over highways (section 178 of the Act).

15.     Power to consent to construction of cellars etc. under street (section 179 of the Act).

16.     Power to consent to the making of openings into cellars etc. under streets and pavement lights and ventilators (section 180 of the Act).

17.     Power to create footpath, bridleway or restricted byway by agreement (section 25 of the Act (C.66)).

18.     Power to create footpaths, bridleways and restricted byways (section 26 of the Act).

19.     Duty to keep register of information with respect to maps, statements and declarations (section 31A of the Act).

20.     Power to stop up footpaths, bridleways and restricted byways (section 118 of the Act).

21.     Power to determine application for public path extinguishment order  ...  view the full agenda text for item 20.


Resolved – that the Terms of Reference be noted.



Dates of Meetings 2018/19

The following dates are proposed for Meetings of the PROWG Committee during 2018/19:


15th October 2018

21st January 2019

15th April 2019


All are Mondays and start at 2.00 pm.


Resolved – that the proposed dates be agreed.



Apologies for Absence and Substitutions


Apologies were received from Councillor Fi Hance.


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 137 KB

To agree the minutes of the previous meeting as a correct record.


Resolved – that the Minutes of the Meeting held on 17th July 2017 be agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.



Declarations of Interest

To note any declarations of interest from the Councillors.  They are asked to indicate the relevant agenda item, the nature of the interest and in particular whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest.


Any declarations of interest made at the meeting which is not on the register of interests should be notified to the Monitoring Officer for inclusion.



None were received.



Public Forum

Up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item.


Any member of the public or Councillor may participate in Public Forum.  The detailed arrangements for so doing are set out in the Public Information Sheet at the back of this agenda.  Public Forum items should be emailed to and please note that the following deadlines will apply in relation to this meeting:-


Questions - Written questions must be received 3 clear working days prior to the meeting.  For this meeting, this means that your question(s) must be received in this office at the latest by 5 pm on 19 June 2018


Petitions and Statements - Petitions and statements must be received on the working day prior to the meeting.  For this meeting this means that your submission must be received in this office at the latest by 12.00 noon on 22 June 2018.



Membersof the Committeereceived Public Forum Statementsin advance of themeeting.


The Statementswere heardbefore theapplication they relatedto – Agenda Item No. 11 Application to Register Land at Stoke Lodge as a Town and Village Green under the Commons Act 2006, Section 15(2) - and were takenfully into consideration prior to reaching a decision.



Application to Register Land at Stoke Lodge as a Town and Village Green under the Commons Act 2006, Section 15(2) pdf icon PDF 174 KB

Additional documents:


The Team Leader, Legal Services introduced the report and summarised it for everyone. She drew Members attention to paragraphs 52 and 55 on pages 128 and 129, the Legal Implications as well as paragraph 337 on page 83.


She then answered questions from Members highlighting the following:


·                     In relation to Taylor in the Inspector’s report, on page 128 paragraph 52 the Judge made it clear that Taylor was binding

·                     In relation to the application of the Winterburn case to the facts of this case, there was a 9 day Public Inquiry and the Inspector made his views clear in paragraph 384 page 93 following the Winterburn case

·                     In relation to the application of the Taylor case, the Inspector may not have been aware of the Taylor judgement when he produced his original report; however Taylor and Winterburn are similar in judgement and binding on the judge.

·                     In relation to the position of the signage, the Judge was mindful of the two judgements as a test

·                     The judge (who reviewed the Council’s December 2016 decision) agreed with the Inspector’s findings and has applied the law properly


Councillor Abraham stated that the Committee needed to be clear what it was being asked to do. They were being asked to reconsider the decision taken previously following the High Court judgement. Councillor Abraham had reviewed what the committee had before them and came with an open mind. He noted that several members of the public did not agree with the Judge’s decision and suggested obtaining different legal advice. The Judge had not ordered the Committee to not register the land. He felt that the decision could be reconsidered and that the Committee could come to the same decision as it made in December 2016 – to register the land.


The Team Leader, Legal Services reminded the Committee that the Judge had made it clear where the Committee had gone wrong when making the decision in December 2016.


Councillor Alexander stated that he lives near the site and has used the land for a number of years. He noted the Inspector’s report and reminded everyone that the Conservative, Green and Lib Dem Representatives had voted in favour of registration in December 2016. He noted the High Court judgement and the money spent on the issue. He considered that this should be the end of the matter.


The Team Leader, Legal Services reminded the Committee that financial considerations are not part of the Statutory Test.


Councillor Wellington stated that the signage issue is very clear.


Councillor Kent stated that he had considered the High court judgement. He felt that the Committee had previously spent a lot of time considering the issue of signage. The Winterburn judgement had changed the Inspector’s mind. He did not consider that the Inspector had taken enough notice of Taylor and suggested that a letter be sent to him asking him to clarify issues about Taylor.


The Team Leader, Legal Services stated that the Inspector had made consideration of the principles  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26.


Current applications for registration of land as town or village greens pdf icon PDF 67 KB


The Team Leader, Legal Services introduced the report and summarised it.


Resolved – that the report be noted.


Current Claims, Inquiries and Miscellaneous Rights of Way Matters pdf icon PDF 91 KB


The Network Operations Manager, Transport introduced the report and summarised it for everyone. There has been a slight increase in the resources of his Team so the backlog is being addressed and he hopes to bring a report to Committee shortly. He confirmed that this report will include timescales.


Councillor Alexander raised the issue of the footpath from Sea Mills Harbour on which a car port has been erected and stated that enforcement action is required.


Resolved – that the report be noted.