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Police Activity on The Plain


SPendrey
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Our sunny day on Salisbury Plain (Sunday 25th) was a little clouded by police activity enforcing a change to the byway route near 'the tank obstacle course'. Our two vehicles/drivers were both fined £30 for "being offroad" where we'd parked watching another group of vehicles. They were also fined, as were another party we met soon after. Anyone else get fined this weekend?

The OS 50k and 25k maps, and GPS confirmed we were on the byway, but it had been moved! Seems like a harsh judgement by the officer, but a magistrate friend suggests we pay rather than appeal simply because of the costs related if a judge finds up 'guilty'.

Shame, a little bit of judgement from the police officer would have been welcome!

We also got stopped later for a "red diesel" test, but of course we didn't/hadn't ever used it.

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Just a note, OS maps aren't the law, the 'Definitive map' is, along with any TROs.

Did you check the Definitive Map before setting off? If not, then you wouldn't have a leg to stand on. Name of road/location/OS ref would possibly, in this case, be justified.

From Wilts site:

Viewing the Definitive Map and Statement

It is possible to view a working copy of the Definitive Map and Statement at local libraries and local council offices. Parish Councils are also provided with copies.

Although Rights of Way are represented on Ordnance Survey maps and are derived from the Definitive Map and Statement it must be recognised that rights of way are liable to change and if you are in any doubt it is always advisable to check with Wiltshire Council.

The police fines have worked though, the whole forum knows about it now ;)

*edit* This made me giggle.... need thos special tracks to go greenlaning? I don't think so!

http://www.wiltshire...bury-plain.pdf

Great advert for the plain IMHO.

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How long ago was this move implemented?

And wouldn't it be great if there were some signage if a route has been moved!

If there have been enough people going off-route to necessitate a police presence I would have thought some signage would have been a more helpful start, rather than spend vast amounts of money sending the police green-laning for the day(s)!

It sounds like many have gone the wrong way through ignorance, believing they were as the OP said on a legitimate route. I know the onus is on us all to check up on the routes we drive, but this action strikes me as a little heavy handed.

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Wouldn't it be great if the definitive map was made available online?!

In some counties it is, it depends on the county council, Hampshire for example has it all online (as I think does Surrey). However they include the note that you should check these against the hard copies that are available.

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I've been informed by a friend who goes onto the plain fairly often, that the by-way in question was altered around 4 years ago, no reason not to check the definitive map or ring Wiltshire ROW Dept to check the map & advise of any changes on the proposed route.

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I know where you mean, and lots of people use the area as a playground with no care for whether there is or ever was a BOAT there or not.

There may have been signs once upon a time, I have no idea. Sadly there are some people, or rather groups of people, who remove signs so that they can act 'dumb' if caught.

It sounds like you were very unlucky, and subject to your passing the attitude test, I am surprised the copper did not just give a warning given that you were clearly stuck with an out of date map and were doing your best to stay legal with a GPS etc.. Given the potential consequences of straying off a BOAT on the SPTA I would have said you got away lightly with a fine! ...though I doubt that makes the pill any less bitter.

IIRC the latest OS maps are up to date with the definitive map - on that lane anyway. The correct current BOAT route is marked here.

There is a new man in charge of administering SPTA. He has only been there a few months so perhaps this is a sign of the new broom sweeping clean, or perhaps a sign of things to come. It is high time the police started taking action in the area as there are a lot of people who, frankly, take the tiddle and drive or ride wherever they please - something which brings the responsible, law abiding majority of us into disrepute - and under suspicion.

Chris

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recieved this copy of a e.mail sent to my frend. note the date

Sent: Mon 06/09/2004 13:13

Subject: RE: Byway 13 query ?

The MOD have indeed had the byway diverted

Health and Safety was the main reason for the diversion.

There has already been a near fatality at the site and it shook them up a bit.

Actually it was a spectator that was injured when a vehicle went out of

control and ploughed into a chap standing at the side of the track (it was

one of those speed trials). The marshals should have ensured that all

spectators were behind the barrier. However, the chap should have had more

sense than to stand where he did.

WCC RoW warden

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I think that seems a bit harsh from the Police... i would give a warning to those parked up.

Unfortunately using common sense and seeing an honest mistake haven't fallen in their code of practise in a while. End of the day they have to justify their worth, handing out petty fines so they can register the incident is worth far more points and prizes than a simple "don't do it again". Sadly it only makes the public see them as jumped up twats, or is it just me :)

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We had a VERY dusty day on the plain today, Got interviened by one warden, a general where we been and where where going type discussion, He advised us of some areas with flags up for army games and we were on the way again, Maybe it was a "special exercise" ?? Shame if they did dish out fines where a caution may have been a better outcome :unsure: Must admit i have never seen the plain sooo dry, apart from one solitary large puddle by stonehenge car park for some reason :)

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Unfortunately using common sense and seeing an honest mistake haven't fallen in their code of practise in a while. End of the day they have to justify their worth, handing out petty fines so they can register the incident is worth far more points and prizes than a simple "don't do it again". Sadly it only makes the public see them as jumped up twats, or is it just me :)

Maybe it's just you.....

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Unfortunately using common sense and seeing an honest mistake haven't fallen in their code of practise in a while. End of the day they have to justify their worth, handing out petty fines so they can register the incident is worth far more points and prizes than a simple "don't do it again". Sadly it only makes the public see them as jumped up twats, or is it just me :)

A couple of questions for you Ruuman:

1. What do you do for a living and

2. Do you take pride in doing your job?

Your attitude towards the police is in my personal opinion disgraceful. You were not present at the mentioned event and we have only heard one side of story. Maybe the police officer was a bit heavy handed. But you don't know how much he had been wound up either during that incident or events preceding. Have you ever had a bad day at work? Do you know what scope the officer had to use his discretion? Can you please enlighten us as to the "points" this officer needed to score? I know i can't. How about the code of practice, can you recite this for us please?

It is all too easy to slag off the police, but they are the first people you turn to when things go wrong. Big case of double standards I think.

You get kn*bs in all walks of life, doesn't mean everyone is a kn*b does it?

No affiliation with the police personally other than several good friends.

Oh and to cap it all - the land rovers were off the PROW so who was actually at fault?

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A couple of questions for you Ruuman:

1. What do you do for a living and

2. Do you take pride in doing your job?

Your attitude towards the police is in my personal opinion disgraceful. You were not present at the mentioned event and we have only heard one side of story. Maybe the police officer was a bit heavy handed. But you don't know how much he had been wound up either during that incident or events preceding. Have you ever had a bad day at work? Do you know what scope the officer had to use his discretion? Can you please enlighten us as to the "points" this officer needed to score? I know i can't. How about the code of practice, can you recite this for us please?

It is all too easy to slag off the police, but they are the first people you turn to when things go wrong. Big case of double standards I think.

You get kn*bs in all walks of life, doesn't mean everyone is a kn*b does it?

No affiliation with the police personally other than several good friends.

Oh and to cap it all - the land rovers were off the PROW so who was actually at fault?

Thank you Bish- very well put...

Sounds like it may well have been an operation to address a specific percieved problem- in which case the Officers are unlikely to have the option of using discretion though likewise there is no such thing as 'point' scoring- they don't get gain anything personally for issuing a ticket... We all know that there are those who deliberately stray from the correct route on the Plain, and indeed on other ROW etc- it is not easy to weed out the ones who have made a genuine mistake from the ones who just could not care less unfortunately.

Si

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Unfortunately using common sense and seeing an honest mistake haven't fallen in their code of practise in a while. End of the day they have to justify their worth, handing out petty fines so they can register the incident is worth far more points and prizes than a simple "don't do it again". Sadly it only makes the public see them as jumped up twats, or is it just me :)

Certainly looks like it's just you, Ruuman :)

Mo

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If there have been enough people going off-route to necessitate a police presence I would have thought some signage would have been a more helpful start, rather than spend vast amounts of money sending the police green-laning for the day(s)!

Would appear the returns were greater than the costs.................or is that the cynical view ?

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