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2011-03-04 22:43:43
Path Remediation
Just a follow on to dhmiraim about works in the Mournes, I doubt an EIA (Environmental Impact Assessment) was required under EU directives as the development is too small. The Planning Service of Northern Ireland list suggested thresholds for EIA for certain developments but none for paths. The closest would be for roads where they state:

"Construction of roads, railways (including elevated and underground) and tramways. A21 For linear transport schemes, the likelihood of significant effects will generally depend on the estimated emissions, traffic, noise and vibration and degree of visual intrusion and impact on the surrounding ecology. EIA is more likely to be required for new development over 2 km in length."

The Annalong Valley is an SAC (Special Area of Conservation) under the EU Habitats Directive and is part of the National designation of an AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). The Habitats Directive allows for remediation works for the protection of designated species of flora but I have not seen any reference to conservation of Annex 1 species in the works being undertaken there. Thus the Mourne Heritage Trust has not as far as I can see justified the works under the Habitats Directive.

The management plan of the Mournes AONB (see http://www.mournelive.com/documentbank/uploads/Towards_a_Mourne_AONB_Management_Plan.pdf) does allow for “…path erosion, repair and remedial action within a structure which allows remedial footpath repair to be undertaken on an on-going basis”. There is no mention of consultation for works in the management plan as far as I can see. Perhaps there is a case for a revision of the management plan to include consultation in which case there should be some lobbying of the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) to include such consultation (email cdp@doeni.gov.uk)

On a practical basis I have walked in the Mournes in all seasons and the most challenging of which is during the winter months. In the winter you would think that the most dangerous parts of the hills were the high tops. But in my mind the most dangerous part I have encountered ever in the Mournes is the ‘remediated’ steps on the upper part of Glen River path when they are covered with ice in winter. These steps are purely the result of ‘remediation’ works. Due to the dangerous ice on the steps I can only safely traverse them in winter when wearing crampons. I notice that others (probably walkers without crampons) are forced to take the even more dangerous route across the slope of the hillside to avoid the steps in winter. Where’s the common sense here? It would seem in such cases that ‘remediation’ is very much a threat to human safety.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 14 Next page >>
Lake District: Scafell and Scafell Pike
Onzy less than an hour ago.
Route from Wasdale over Scafell Pike and Scafell, Ill Crag, Broad Crag and a couple of other peaks. Route includes 4 ... walk, Len: 12.8km, Climb: 1471m, Area: Lingmell, Lake District - Central & Wes

Forum: General
Mountaineering Ireland consults on mountains
simon3 3 hours ago.
Mountaineering Ireland (MI) is attempting to build a consensus on what hillwalkers value in the Irish mountains. It is a very logical step prior to advocating on behalf of hillwalkers to first det...

Castle Hill
Onzy 4 hours ago.
Up and down Castle Hill. Essentially a duplicate of track 2048, but substantially shorter as I parked blocking a gate wi walk, Len: 4.8km, Climb: 398m, Area: Slieve Mish (Ireland)

Caha Mountains: Tooreennamna
Onzy 5 hours ago.
Route taking in Tooreenamna, an outlier to the west of the Cummeenageera circuit and a highly rated hill. walk, Len: 4.5km, Climb: 439m, Area: Tooreennamna, Caha Mountains (Ireland) Too...

Hart Walk
GSheehy 20 hours ago.
{First off, I wasn't with the lads. Just sharing the info.}What?s not to like reading about the trials and tribulation walk, Len: 115.7km, Climb: 3215m, Area: Dublin/Wicklow (Ireland) Cloghernagh,

Summit Comment
Barnahowna: Fine-weather photo
bryanmccabe 3 days ago.
Thought a fine-weather photo of Barnahowna summit was needed!

Ott Mountain to Slieve Meelmore
Aidy 4 days ago.
Started at the Ott/Blue Quarry car park on the Moyad Road, and took a route taking in six summits, going over Ott Mou... walk, Len: 10.9km, Climb: 730m, Area: Ott Mountain, Mourne Mountains (Ireland)

Summit Comment
Torc Mountain W Top: Big brother ....
hivisibility 2 days ago.
Here's a picture of Torc itself from Torc West Top. Approx 600m between the two summits.

Summit Summary
Maumtrasna North-East Top: Worth a visit!
Collaborative entry Last edit by: bryanmccabe 3 days ago.
Maumtrasna NE top, approximately 2km NE of Maumtrasna, is worth a visit in its own right. The most direct access is via the steep ridge up to nearby spot height 542. One possible starting point is...

Summit Comment
Crossderry: Summit No 2 of a fine ridge walk.
hivisibility 3 days ago.
Here is another view of Crossderry taken from Mothillín. You can see the twin peaks at the summit area. The summit proper is the one on the right. Knocknabreeda in the background.Its pretty rugged...

Glenbeigh to Galway's Bridge
GSheehy 5 days ago.
I?m putting this one up because it was a club walk and I was thinking about the other day. There aren?t too many clu walk, Len: 40.5km, Climb: 917m, Area: Glenbeigh Horseshoe (Ireland)

Summit Comment
Mothaillín: Fabulous views to the west from the summit.
hivisibility 4 days ago.
Fine view towards Broghnabinnia and Caher from Mothillín summit.

RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 14 Next page >>