Category Archives: Garburn Road

Photos of ride over Garburn Pass in the Snow by Mik Murray

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The Lake District’s Garburn Road

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Dear Simeon,

The reason I’ve emailed you on this occasion is to ask for your, or your members’ help…

I’m lucky enough to live in Troutbeck in the Lake District, directly opposite the Garburn Road, the famous and historic track that links Troutbeck and Kentdale valleys across the 1500 foot high Garburn Pass.

This unpaved (and now badly eroded) track is much used by mountain bikers and walkers, and until recently was also heavily used by motorised cycle ‘trail riders’ and 4×4 ‘off-roaders’, who were widely blamed for the destruction of the track itself, and ofits peace and tranquility.

The Lake District National Park Authority was successful a couple of years ago in banning these motorised vehicles from Garburn Road, but in the last few weeks this ban has been overturned by a legal challenge from the Cumbria Trail Riders Fellowship. The trail riders have successfully exploited our country’s byzantine legal framework for regulating country byways, and apparently the Planning Inspector’s final decision on Garburn Road will be based on weather motorised vehicles were its first public vehicle users (as claimed by the trail riders), or whether it can be shown that other non-motorised vehicle users (ie carts, carriages or bicycles) pre-dated this use.

Hence this post! I am looking for documented evidence of use of the Garburn Road by cycles before 1930!

If any of your members can help in any way with this quest — ideally with evidence such as written journals, published maps, guides, photos etc — or can point me in the direction I might look for these, this would be a great help!

We’re up against a deadline — written objections have to be lodged by 7th January 2010!

Best regards

Brian Liddell

Brian e-mail me above on the 16th December 2009, if you can help you get in touch with Brian by e-mail at brian[at] and also post comment on this blog. I would ask other webmasters of cycling websites to post above on your site.