Police launch crackdown on vehicles trespassing on pathway

Basingstoke Gazette: Police launch crackdown on vehicles trespassing on pathway Police launch crackdown on vehicles trespassing on pathway

HAMPSHIRE Police have promised to take “robust” action against people using motor vehicles on land at Ladies’ Walk.

The pathway, used by walkers and dog owners, which runs above the town has long been a popular track for motorbikes and quad bike users. Land known as the Plantations is also a hot-spot for riders.

However, the police have now issued a new warning to those riding on Ladies’ Walk and the Plantations.

Inspector Paul Markham stated: “The landowner of the Ladies’ Walk area has withdrawn rights of use. Throughout June, unauthorised users will be given information about this change, warning them of the consequences if they continue to use vehicles on the land.

“After that, anyone found to be using the land without permission will be dealt with robustly under the appropriate legislation.”

Claire Hewlett uses Ladies’ Walk regularly and has seen bikers using the land.

She said: “I have lived here since 2003 and my husband is Andover born and bred and there has been a problem with bikes for as long as we can remember. They have spent a lot of money improving the path and providing fields for livestock but it gets ruined with these bikes making it so dangerous.

“I was once nearly run over – I had to jump out of the way of a flying bike. I feel very unsafe up there and it puts you off using the land.

“It is only a matter of time until someone gets seriously hurt on Ladies’ Walk. It’s all very well for the police to say they will deal with riders strongly but we need to see them enforce it properly.”

A spokesman from Test Valley Borough Council said: “Barriers are in place to dissuade people from riding motorcycles along Ladies’ Walk but the barriers need to allow access for pushchairs and wheelchairs. The police are aware of the recent use of Ladies’ Walk by motorcyclists.

The public are asked to report any further instances to the police.”

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