BBC 4 screened a documentary about off-roading in the Peak District National Park on Sunday 30 October. It was the second of three programmes about threats to the tranquility of the national parks. In the Peak District, filmmaker Richard Macer follows the story of a campaign to stop 4x4 drivers and trail bikers motoring along the area's greenlanes. The Peak Park programme featured much about the Peak District Green Lanes Alliance (PDGLA) campaign. The PDGLA is an organisation that is, in its own words, 'campaigning to stop the Peak District's green lanes being destroyed by 4x4s and motor bikes'.
As was probably to be expected the documentary which, to some extent, attempted to be even handed trotted out the same old arguments and highlighted all the conflicts that these issues raise; locals v visitors, young v old, nostalgia v the present, middle class v others, ramblers v other recreationalists and so on.
The Peak District National Park employees and officials seemed caught in the middle and were often in a no-win situation. As always, the behaviour of some trail riders and 4x4 drivers didn't help but neither did the conceited and selfish tone of many of the anti motor vehicle campaigners didn't either. The most offensive comments in the whole programme came from one of the latter's number.
The documentary can still be viewed on BBC iplayer. www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b016psp6/