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Angus councillors delay enforcement decision in Monifieth right-of-way row

A decision over possible enforcement action to re-open the path has been delayed by Angus councillors.
A decision over possible enforcement action to re-open the path has been delayed by Angus councillors.

A Monifieth right-of-way row will rumble on for a little longer.

Angus councillors meeting on Tuesday had been asked by officials to go down the enforcement route in the dispute over access to a path off Ferry Road.

The row centres around a strip of ground beside 114 Ferry Road closed off in 2020.

Monifieth path
The strip of land was blocked off with a fence and skip.

Until then it was a popular short cut between a nearby park, Monifieth High School and the store on Ferry Road.

And a council investigation revealed people had been using the path for more than 25 years.

But the owners of the property shut it off after moving into their new home.

They say they own the ground.

And barriers were put up because of problems with dog fouling and damage to cars.

Historic use

The local authority believe the evidence of past use over so many years is sufficient grounds to take enforcement for the right-of-way to be re-opened.

Angus Local Access Forum has backed the move.

However, the council’s land reform sub-committee has agreed a short delay in deciding the outcome.

Monifieth path
The path remains fenced off.

The property owner’s solicitor said they had not been given sufficient time to take instruction from their clients on the matter.

Council solicitor David Thompson said: “I would suggest that the request is not unreasonable in the circumstances.”

The sub-committee received an assurance that only a fortnight delay would be needed.

A firm date for the re-scheduled meeting is still to be set.

Numerous complaints

The council received dozens of complaints when the path was originally fenced off in the summer of 2020.

Their local survey revealed 94% of the 52 local who responded had regularly used the route until that point.

Angus officials are recommending enforcement action to get the path re-opened.

They want approval to serve a notice under Section 14 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.

And they want to get the go-ahead from councillors to defend the matter in the sheriff court if any order is appealed.

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