Letter: Blocked footpaths of old England

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The Independent Online
Sir: For so long I have read and heard about the rights of every Englishman to walk the public footpaths of the country. I have even been told that there is a watchdog committee which zealously watches over these rights. If this is true, then they need to wake up and pay attention!

Last month I arrived off the plane at Heathrow from LA, picked up my car and headed towards East Anglia. In Suffolk, in the hamlet of Nedging, I stopped by the church, by a public footpath sign, started down it, only to be stopped after 50 yards by a very specific sign which indicated that I was about to trespass on private property. So I retreated, only to be told later in the nearby village that I should have heeded the first sign and ignored the second.

The arrogance required to flout centuries-old laws such as this is beyond my comprehension. I hope that those who are supposedly overseeing these footpaths take the appropriate action on behalf of all those who enjoy the country. Or, if they are still asleep, I hope those citizens of East Anglia who care enough will rise and rectify this act of blatant arrogance.

ROBERT GRABOW

Carmel, California,

USA

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