POWYS County Council is inviting residents to put themselves forward to become a member of the Powys Local Access Forum (LAF) and play an important role in influencing the council’s work looking after public rights of way and greenspace in the county.
If you have an interest in countryside access – whether that’s in getting out and about, land management or nature conservation – your experience and understanding can help the council to shape its countryside access work. Powys has an important network of footpaths and rights of way which everyone should be able to access easily.
Cllr Jackie Charlton, Cabinet Member for a Greener Powys explains what is involved. “The Local Access Forum is a statutory group that advises Powys County Council, Natural Resources Wales, Welsh Government and other partners and organisations, in matters related to open-air recreation in the county’s countryside.
“There are up to 15 members of the forum at any one time, made up from all walks of life, and the whole group is reappointed every three years. The current members are nearing the end of their term and the council is looking for enthusiastic people who would like to make a difference and be a part of the Local Access Forum for the next three years, starting in April 2023. It is important to have a diverse group of interested citizens who are able to capture the needs of everyone wanting to access the countryside.”
The forum meets between two and four times a year and attendance can be in person or virtual Over the last three years, the Local Access Forum has helped the council shape its annual work programme, supported by a variety of grants and taken an advisory role in a number of countryside access projects, including:
- The Canals, Communities and Wellbeing project, due for completion in summer 2023 and funded through the Welsh Government Enabling Natural Resources and Well-being (ENRaW) grant.
- A Shared Prosperity funded project, to enhance signage on public rights of way with volunteer support, running until March 2025.
Current Local Access Forum member, Kath Shaw, would encourage interested individuals to volunteer to become a member from April 2023. “As a keen hill walker and farmer, I felt it was important to have a voice on the Powys Local Access Forum. Over the last three years I have gained a good insight into the work Powys County Council does to maintain our footpaths and byways.
“I feel that Local Access Forums are a good way for interested parties to share their views and concerns about access to the countryside.”
If you would like to receive an application pack, please contact the Secretary to the Local Access Forum:
Powys County Council
Gwalia Offices, Ithon Road, Llandrindod Wells, Powys. LD1 6AA
More information can also be found online: https://en.powys.gov.uk/article/2588/Local-Access-Forum
The deadline for applications is March 30, 2023.