Local Access Forums (LAF) were established by the Brecon Beacons National Park as statutory advisory bodies and were set up as a result of the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000.
The Act says the purpose of the Forums is:
- To advise the National Park Authority on the improvement of public access to the land in the National Park for the purpose of open air recreation and enjoyment of the area.
In carrying out their function, the Forums will have due regard to the needs of land management and conservation of the natural beauty of the area.
The Brecon Beacons National Park Authority originally had three Local Access Forums, one each for the east, west and central areas of the National Park. However, on 10 April 2008 one single Local Access Forum was established to cover the whole of the National Park area.
What does a Local Access Forum do?
The LAF considers all forms of access, including horse riding, cycling and off road driving, and not just access on foot. The exact nature of this work is decided upon by the LAF itself, in agreement with the National Park Authority.
There are certain issues upon which a LAF must, by statute, be consulted. These include:
- the appointment of wardens as respect to access land.
- the making of Byelaws relating to access land.
- the preparation or review of a Rights of Way Improvement Plan.
- applications for long-term exclusions or restrictions on access to access land.
How often does the LAF meet?
Regulations require the LAF to meet at least twice a year. However, the Brecon Beacons National Park LAF currently meets approximately four times a year. In addition, members may also attend sub-group meetings or conferences throughout the year.
Are LAF members paid?
No. LAF members give their time on a voluntary basis although they can claim any out of pocket expenses.
Who appoints the LAF members?
The Brecon Beacons National Park Authority appoints the LAF members. However, the CROW Act specifically requires that anyone appointed must be representative of : –
- users of public rights of way or access land.
- owners/occupiers of access land or land over which local rights of way subsist.
- any other interests especially relevant to the area.
There must also be a reasonable balance between the interests of users and the owners/occupiers of access land.
Can I attend a LAF meeting?
Yes. Members of the public are welcomed at all meetings of the Forum and may be invited to speak at the discretion of the Chairman. Meetings dates are shown on this website.
What does the establishment of a LAF mean to me?
The LAF is keen to serve local people and visitors. If you have ideas about how access can be improved or managed in the National Park, please get in touch with any of the LAF members via the Secretary, Richard Ball on 01874 620464 or email. Because the LAF has a balanced membership you can be sure that your ideas or suggestions will be given fair consideration by the relevant LAF.
Can I contact LAF members?
Should you wish to contact a member, please do this via the Secretary, Richard Ball on 01874 620464 or email.