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Girl on bike on disused railway between Hawes and Garsdale, along which a public right of way is to be created. (nb. image for use with 21 May 2024 news release only)

Progress on Hawes-Garsdale bridleway

Tuesday 21 May, 2024, by News Release

‘Good progress’ is being made on the Hawes to Garsdale Multi-User Route.


The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority has been developing a proposal to create the bridleway, in Upper Wensleydale, since 2022 and has identified all the separate land holdings along the proposed route.  Land agents working for the National Park Authority have been in discussions about compensation and practical issues with most of the landowners.


It is hoped that by the end of March next year the first public right of way creation agreements will have been signed.   At that stage, detailed plans for installing the necessary infrastructure will be drawn up, as well as bids to potential funders for the capital works.


A survey carried out in March 2022 demonstrated strong public support for a multi user route along ‘Hawes Branch’, a six mile stretch of disused railway line between Garsdale Station and Hawes.  Almost 80% of the nearly 2,300 responses expressed support for a family-friendly, off-road, wheelchair-accessible way for people on horse, bike or foot, which would bring significant local economic development.


Lizzie Bushby, Member Champion for Recreation Management, said: “Enquiries about the progress of the Hawes-Garsdale Multi-User Route are being made regularly, so it’s time we provided an update, especially for those who took part in the survey in 2022.


“Good progress is being made.  The principle of developing a public right of way between Garsdale Station and the former Hawes Station has been established.   Resources have been allocated to complete creation agreements in partnership with landowners.   Discussions are well advanced with partners regarding the liability for some of the larger structures. From the looks of it, the Victorian infrastructure of Hawes Branch, being well built, is fundamentally sound.


“There is a lot of excitement about the project. It will provide spectacular views of the farmed landscape and a level way for all abilities. It will promote active travel at a time of climate emergency.  And it will provide a far safer opportunity for children and their families to exercise and access nature in the magnificent environment of Upper Wensleydale.


“It is still too early to provide a detailed timescale for the development.  It’s certainly going to take several years to complete, as we learned when we developed the Pennine Bridleway National Trail.  Yet we are confident the Hawes-Garsdale Multi User Route will happen.  The first practical works on the ground, on those land parcels where creation agreements are efficiently reached, could begin in 2025.”

Picture of News Release

News Release

Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority


2 Replies to “Progress on Hawes-Garsdale bridleway”

  1. Tim says:

    Can we see a map of the route, please?

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