Your chance to help to shape access to the countryside

This story was published 4 April 2022

North Yorkshire people with an interest in countryside access are being invited to apply to join the county’s Local Access Forum.

Members of the North Yorkshire Local Access Forum support improvements to countryside access

The North Yorkshire Local Access Forum brings together representatives of land managers, users and other relevant areas of interest to watch over and help to shape the future of footpaths, bridleways, byways, open access land and other green spaces within North Yorkshire, outside the boundaries of the National Parks.

It is an independent body that advises ourselves, and other bodies, on how people can make the most of opportunities for enjoying the great outdoors.

As a member of the Forum, you would work with a broad range of people to help to ensure that the countryside is open to all. The Forum is expected to develop a constructive, inclusive approach to improving recreational access to the countryside and to respect local circumstances and interests, while following national guidance. It also acts as a bridge between interest groups and seeks a consensus wherever possible.

Michael Leah, Assistant Director Travel, Environmental and Countryside, said: “North Yorkshire’s beautiful countryside is a huge asset. Its use for business, recreation and as a place to live has many benefits. That is why it is important that it remains open and accessible in a way that ensures its long-term preservation.

“The Forum works hard to promote countryside access and balance the needs of those who live, work and spend time in the county’s green spaces. We are seeking to recruit more volunteer members to bring new perspectives, challenge and ideas.”

If you feel that, in a voluntary capacity, you could contribute to the Forum’s work, request an application pack by contacting Will Baines, Principal Democratic Services and Scrutiny Officer, at

The closing date for applications is Sunday, 8 May, and informal interviews will take place on 26 and 27 May.