Asked to Leave Cambridgeshire Guided Busway Cycle Track


Monday, January 25th, 2016. 2:13pm

On Sunday the 24th of January 2016 I was on the Cambridgeshire Guided Busway cycle/maintenance track and I was approached by someone wearing a Cambridgeshire County Council lanyard and a fleece jacket emblazoned with “the busway” and “park and ride”.

The person who approached me told me I was on private premises and asked me to leave. My understanding was at the time was that I was on a public right of way. That remains my view.

The person who approached me appeared to be wearing an ID card on their lanyard but it was facing their body rather than me, and later it was tucked inside their jacket. They refused to identify themselves and said there were not a public official. If front-line County Council officers are to wear ID cards they should be visible to the public.

We had an exchange as follows:

Richard Taylor: Hello.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: You are not filming me.
Richard Taylor: I’m just interested in what you’re about to say.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: You’re not actually..
Richard Taylor: I was filming you then yes.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: You’re on private premises.
Richard Taylor: I’m on a public highway actually.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: It’s not a public right of way if you read the signs.
Richard Taylor: It’s not a public right of way, no?
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: It’s a permissive bridleway.
Richard Taylor: It’s a public right of way though isn’t it. It is a bridleway.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: You don’t have any permission to be filming here and you don’t have any permission.
Richard Taylor: I don’t have to have any permission to be here. Do I not?
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: Well I’m asking you to leave actually because what you’re doing now is illegal.
Richard Taylor: Can I have your [I point to the hidden ID card]
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: I’m not giving you my name.
Richard Taylor: So you’re not giving me your name. So you’re a public official
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: I’m not a public official. In that sense. A policeman doesn’t have to give you their name.
Richard Taylor: So if you’re not a public official I’d like to ignore you.

The person then walked off and I continued what I was doing. He approached me again a few moments later:

Richard Taylor: Hello.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: Here Paul, this is the chap here. I was quite simply just asking him what he was doing and stuff. He starts filming me so I’m filming him back. I’ll set this on YouTube. It’s like all I was doing was coming out to ask you what you were doing.
Richard Taylor: Yes. So I’ve asked you who you are and you’ve told me …
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: No, no, no because you started filming me. That’s aggression mate.
Richard Taylor: No it’s not remotely aggressive.
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: I’m not volunteering to be filmed, neither are you. This is the point I am making. What you are doing is simply why are you doing this are you going to put this on the internet?
Richard Taylor: Yes. That’s my aim. What I’ve done is come out here because I’m going to comment on the City Deal’s consultation on Milton Road, and I’ve decided to do it by video and I’ve come here to make a piece..
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: Why didn’t you come and say you know I’m going to make a film and do this that and the other. Then none of that. You just decide to do it. You wouldn’t go onto Tesco’s and do this would you?
Richard Taylor: I think Tescos is ..
Man with Cambridgeshire County Council Lanyard: No sorry I think I’ve got enough. [Inaudible comments as he walks off]

The area we were in is filmed by Cambridgeshire County Council and the camera feed is published online.

Excerpt from Cambridgeshire County Council’s Public Rights of Way Map.

The cycleway access track on which I was standing is shown on Cambridgeshire County Council’s Public Rights of Way map as a bridleway, its name is 151/12 and its designation is path number 12.

The The Cambridgeshire Guided Busway Order 2005 refers to public rights of way over the bridleways and cycletracks.

My view is that filming, like photographing, sketching or stopping for a drink or a sandwich is clearly a lawful, ordinary and reasonable use of a highway / public right of way.

I will ask the County Council if the person wearing their lanyard was correct to say I was not on a public right of way.

If this individual was an agent of the state they should not have asked me to leave.

If the person who approached me wasn’t a Cambridgeshire County Council official perhaps I’ve captured some video of someone in possession of a stolen lanyard and fleece?

2 comments/updates on “Asked to Leave Cambridgeshire Guided Busway Cycle Track

  1. Richard Taylor Article author

    The County Council have replied:

    Their statement says:

    Generally media organisations provide notification when they plan to film on the public highway and especially on the Busway/P&R to avoid any confusion. We have learnt from this that we need to clarify for our team where people can film. We have spoken to the officer regarding providing his name when asked by the public and how to approach people. Please accept our apologies for any confusion caused and feel free to get in touch should you wish to film again.

    There is no need to contact the council before filming on the highway and I don’t intend to. Many people routinely record their trips by car and bike and other vehicles without getting in touch with the council.

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