LARA has achieved much during its 30-year lifespan but we’ve decided, for now, to concentrate on our most significant achievements of recent years.
Fighting proposed amendments to the Deregulation Bill
This was probably LARA’s most important campaign of the 2010s to date. The Coalition Government-inspired Deregulation Bill sought to ease the administrative burden of legislation in a number of areas, including rights of way. LARA was represented on the Stakeholder Working Group (SWG) which achieved an unprecedented consensus on the way forward for rights of way legislation. Unfortunately, those who dislike vehicles in the countryside attempted to hijack the Bill to include a blanket ban on all motorised vehicles on all unsealed roads. LARA co-ordinated a vigorous campaign, the outcome of which was the rejection of the amendments proposed by the anti-motoring lobby groups.
Promoting Selective TROs
LARA has been successful in advocating and promoting a steady trend away from the permanent prohibition of all motorised vehicles on unsealed roads towards more selective orders which restrict lawful traffic no more than is essential. Read more on the Selective TROs page.
Publishing technical reports
Over the last five years LARA has published three significant reports: the most authoritative current research on the status of Unsealed Unclassified Roads; guidance on the latest in good management of unsealed roads in the Traffic Management Hierarchy report and, most recently; good practice guidance for event organisers and land managers in the Motor Sports Events in the Countryside report. You can download these reports from the Publications page.
Maintaining the ’14/28 day rule’
In very simple terms, what is known colloquially as the ’14/28 day rule’ allows motorsport to use land, on a temporary basis, without the need to apply for planning permission for a change-of-use. It is the legislation which allows motorcycle scrambling on farmland, trials in woodland, and much, much more, and this temporary use is essential to most grassroots motorsport. LARA headed-off a major threat to the ’14/28 day rule’ in 2002, and again in 2011, and remains alert to threats from those who wish to stop the inclusion of motorsport in these Permitted Development Rights. As one of those involved in fighting the previous threats has remarked “Every day that the 14/28 day rule continues to exist should be regarded as an achievement for LARA.” You can read more about the 14/28 day rule in the LARA Report – Motor Sports Events in the Countryside. See Section 7, starting on page 26.
Assisting with ‘Marsden’
LARA provided technical support to GLASS, the TRF, and Chris Marsden in fighting Powys County Council in what became known, colloquially, as the ‘Marsden Case’. Essentially, Powys CC sought to close three byways to motorised vehicles on the basis that it was uneconomic to keep them in suitable repair for such use. Allowing Powys CC to proceed on this basis could have had nationwide implications and the Council’s intentions were challenged. A series of court cases followed, culminating in a negotiated settlement which should lead, eventually, to continuing access to these byways for motorised vehicles.