Neil Hamilton AM

NEIL Hamilton, Leader of UKIP Wales and AM for Mid & West Wales, is urging people with an interest in the countryside, to join a local forum.

Mr Hamilton, Party Spokesman for Agriculture and Rural Affairs, is calling on constituents who want to be involved in future decisions on public access, to apply to become members of the Ceredigion Local Access Forum.

The Forum’s function is to advise the County Council, Natural Resources Wales and other bodies, on the improvement of public access to land in the area for the purposes of open-air recreation and general enjoyment.

This includes improvement to the public rights of way and the right of access to open country and registered common land.

Mr Hamilton said: “This is an extremely important role as farmers and landowners are becoming more and more concerned over increasing public access to land and the creation of more rights of way.

“It is good to see the LAF (Local Access Forum) exists so that full discussions can take place on this subject.  I welcome the call from Ceredigion County Council for suitable people to come forward and join the Forum.

“They are obviously looking for members who have experience in the management of the countryside, such as farmers and landowners, but there are many other countryside users like walkers, horse riders, cyclists or off-roaders, who can bring their knowledge and experience to the table.

“It is vital that people with countryside knowledge join the Forum. They are the ones who really know and understand what increasing public access is all about.

“However, it is also important to have a cross section of members so the Forum can debate different ideas and give a balanced view.”

Ceredigion County Council are seeking to appoint new members to the new Local Access Forum to cover the next three years.

Councillor Rhodri Evans, Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration said: “If you’re someone who’s willing to play a full part in all aspects of a LAF’s work and could help advise on the improvement of public access to land in the area, for the purposes of open-air recreation and the enjoyment of the area, then you could be an ideal person to be a part of the new Forum.”

For more information on how to apply go to http://www.ceredigion.gov.uk/resident/coast-countryside/local-access-forum/laf-appointments-2018-21/.  Applicants can apply to be considered for membership until July 2 2018.

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