A South Cumbria police action day to catch illegal off-roaders in the act was deemed a success as a number of lawbreakers were stopped.
With the help of partners the Green Lane Association (GLASS), the National Trust, the Forestry Commission and the Lake District National Park, six riders were advised and two were later issued with Traffic Offence Reports and a Section 56 warning.
Sgt Rupert Johnston of the Ulverston and Furness Policing team, said: ‘This has been a very successful day of action which has targeted the illegal and anti-social use of motor vehicles that have been abusing our countryside.
‘Most of the off-road routes in the area we covered are illegal to drive on – including by motorcyclists. There are a small number of legal routes but it is important that motorists research and seek advice to check they are driving legally.
‘We are intending to run a number of further operations this summer as we are determined to do all we can to prevent further damage to the fells and distress to our residents and visitors.’
Illegal off-roading is an increasing problem and risks killing greelaning according to LRO’s Neil Watterson.
Dean Spencer is a GLASS representative for Cumbria and was part of the crackdown on illegal offenders is his ‘old trusty’ Discovery 300Tdi. He said, ‘It is mainly motorbike riders that seem to be the main offenders.
‘It does seem that it’s also mainly from people outside the Cumbria area as they arrive in vans. It’s the parish of Colton which is the main area affected as this is where some challenging tracks with links through the forestry area, which is not allowed, are targeted.
‘It was actually on Walna Scar where two motorbikes came up past the no vehicle signs, but when they realised that a Highways Agency vehicle was up there watching out, they did a quick U-turn and went back into Coniston where the police were waiting for them.’
If you are unaware of where you can and can’t take your Land Rover, you can read the GLASS Code of Conduct here.
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