AN ORDER has been confirmed for the diversion of part of a public footpath running through a barn conversion.
The application was made by Southport-based Peel Hall Park at Peel Hall, Ashton Hayes, which is in Horton cum Peel parish.
Proposals to divert about 70 metres of the path, known as footpath no 3 in Horton cum Peel, were originally made to Chester City Council.
Public rights of way officers said the barns at Peel Hall were being developed and on the plans it appeared part of the footpath was affected.
“Unfortunately the development went ahead and was completed before the order was confirmed,” said a report.
The developers then contacted Cheshire County Council’s public rights of way unit.
They argued it would be in the interests of the occupants if the path was diverted away from the dwellings.
County councillors heard the application was made as the path now runs through the courtyard of the development and directly in front of garages and offices.
The developers had expected the path would have been diverted and the conversion had gone ahead with that expectation.
An alternative, stone surfaced footpath had been constructed.
Peel Hall Park believed it was in the interests of the landowners for pedestrians to be diverted away from the vicinity of the garage and office doors.
There were possible privacy and security issues as well as potential danger from conflict between pedestrian and vehicular traffic.
The alternative route was said to be safer and more convenient for the public.
County planners pointed out the new route passes over part of a 17th century garden at Peel Hall.
The Mid Cheshire Footpath Society said it had no objection but expressed regret at the “cavalier attitude of Chester City Council towards the approval of planning applications that affect public rights of way”.
As there were no objections, the diversion was recommended for approval.
County solicitor Gerry Budd said the order has now been confirmed.
It can be challenged in the High Court until January 23.