Town council backs down as public complain, ‘don’t fence us in’

De Aston Field, Market Rasen
De Aston Field, Market Rasen

A complaint about a public right of way being blocked means Market Rasen Town Council has to remove part of a new £2,000 fence.

Having bought the land on behalf of the town late last year, councillors erected a new fence and gates a few weeks ago to secure the site during its redevelopment into a leisure facility and arboretum.

But following a complaint from a member of the public that it blocked a right of way, part of the fence, which cost £2,862, has had to be taken apart - despite the re being an open gate.

Assistant town clerk Juliette Herret said: “We explained that there are two gates in place which were open (not locked), however, as there are no animals being kept in the field it has to be an opening not a gate which we did not realise.”

The town council did ask Lincolnshire County Council whether it would be possible to move the right of way, but, despite a number of councillors remembering that it had been moved once before, LCC officers said it was too costly and time consuming for the authority.

Town councillor John Matthews, who is leading the working group to rejuvenate De Aston Field, said: “It is disappointing, but the vehicular gates are still in place so the idea to create a parking area with hard standing still stands.

“As far as further development on the field goes, we have been donated a selection of spring bulbs which will get planted.

“The field at the bottom end is very wet. A short term fix would be to dig a small ditch to get rid of some of that surface run off water.”

A £500 grant for wetland plants is being made and the council is also applying for up to £5,000 worth of grant funding for wild flowers.

The authority has already been gifted a number of trees by the town’s Rotary Club in order to create an arboretum.

Other plans for the land, located off Willingham Road and bought by the town council for around £90,000 in the autumn, include installing outside gym equipment and a boules or petanque pitch to celebrate Market Rasen’s twinning link with France.

An acre of the field, closest to the cemetery, would also be held back for when the graveyard needs extending