The Department of the Environment has launched a consultation to find out more about how people use the Island’s countryside paths.
Islanders can take part in the consultation and survey online and can also attend a number of independently run workshops to share their views on how the network can be managed in future.
Many public paths in Jersey are managed by the Department of the Environment. The majority of the budget available is used for maintaining the paths with little remaining for enhancing the facilities.
The department hopes to get the views of as many people and organisations who use the paths before it puts together a co-ordinated plan for future management of the network.
It has published a Countryside Access Strategy document which looks at some of the main issues surrounding use of the paths and has also developed an online survey. Together with a number of focus groups, it is hoped to gather more detailed information on people’s use and views of coast and countryside paths.
Planning and Environment Minister Deputy Rob Duhamel said: “Jersey Tourism estimates that approximately 100,000 tourists a year use the paths, in addition to local walkers, horse riders, dog owners and cyclists, so the network brings considerable environmental, educational, health and economic benefits.
“We don’t have all the answers and we don’t know what different users want or need so while there’s going to be a compromise and balance between user need and budget available, we want to hear as many people’s views as possible before we produce a plan for the future.”
The consultation is open to everyone and available online at http://consult.gov.je/portal or as a paper copy by request. Anyone who would like to take part in the focus groups should contact 4Insight Limited at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 765380.
The closing date is Thursday 7 August 2014.