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Right of way change

Request for information – FOI14455


Please explain when and why public rights of way shown on OS Explorer maps along these two routes in Staffordshire changed between 1994 and 2004 revisions:

  • from Beeston Tor Farm (SK106540) in a generally southerly direction to Farwall Lane (SK104519)
  • from the Manifold Way (SK101535) south via Soles Hollow to Farwall Lane (SK104518)

Our response

Thank you for your e-mail of 26 February 2014, which we acknowledge, requesting information from Ordnance Survey in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000.

Ordnance Survey does not hold the information to respond to your information request in full as we do not have access to historic editions of OS Explorer (Outdoor Leisure) Map 24, before 2002.

The reason historic mapping is no longer held by Ordnance Survey, is because we closed our historic map archive in 2008. Historical mapping can now be obtained free of charge from your local library. Copyright libraries and The National Archive hold comprehensive historic mapping and offer reading and copying facilities for customers willing to visit and carry out their own searches.

Ordnance Survey does not hold information to substantiate changes going back to 1994 as there is no business requirement for Ordnance Survey to retain such information, from this date, as the map becomes the evidence.

Under Section 16 ‘The Duty to Provide Advice and Assistance’ we can advise that anything published prior to 2002, was published as our previous series of mapping called Pathfinder, which the OS Explorer Map series replaced. We do not believe that ‘Other routes with public Access’ (ORPAs) were shown on most of the Pathfinder series and certainly not before 1994.

  • from Beeston Tor Farm (SK106540) in a generally southerly direction to Farwall Lane (SK104519)

Because we did not show ORPAs on the Pathfinder series before 1994, this may explain why no ORPA was shown on the 1994 Pathfinder map, but is shown on the 2002 edition A of the Explorer map.

  • from the Manifold Way (SK101535) south via Soles Hollow to Farwall Lane (SK104518)

Ordnance Survey received information from the Rights of Way Unit of the Countryside Services at Staffordshire County Council in November 2001 for the ORPA to be added to our mapping.

However, without access to the mapping prior to this date (which is no longer held as explained above) we are unable to state that there was a public footpath shown on our previous mapping.

We have checked the current Definitive Map from Staffordshire County Council, the legal document for the status and alignment of rights of way in the area, and no public right of way is shown along this route, so what we currently depict on our mapping is correct.

Internal review

Your enquiry has been processed according to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000. If you are unhappy with our response, you may request an internal review with our FOI Internal Review Officer, by contacting them as follows:

FOI Internal Review Officer
Customer Service Centre
Ordnance Survey
Adanac Drive
SO16 0AS

E-mail: foi@ordnancesurvey.co.uk

Please include the reference number above. You may request an internal review where you believe Ordnance Survey has:

  • Failed to respond to your request within the time limits (normally 20 working days)
  • Failed to tell you whether or not we hold the information
  • Failed to provide the information you have requested
  • Failed to explain the reasons for refusing a request
  • Failed to correctly apply an exemption or exception

The FOI Internal Review Officer will not have been involved in the original decision. They will conduct an independent internal review and will inform you of the outcome of the review normally within 20 working days, but exceptionally within 40 working days, in line with the Information Commissioner’s guidance.

The FOI Internal Review Officer will either: uphold the original decision, provide an additional explanation of the exemption/s applied or release further information, if it is considered appropriate to do so.

Appeal to Information Commissioner's Office (ICO)
If, following the outcome of the internal review you remain unhappy with our response, you may raise an appeal with the Information Commissioner’s Office at:

The Case Reception Unit
Customer Service Team
The Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

E-mail: mail@ico.gsi.gov.uk

Telephone helpline: 0303 123 1113 or 01625 545745 for advice, Monday to Friday.

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