Enjoy the views but pay the dues


Driving up out of High Bentham towards Slaidburn today I had to stop to admire this view back over Wenningdale towards Whernside and Ingleborough. It was such a change to see an all-too-brief glimpse of blue sky. Looking the other way (below) was also a pretty scene (even though I briefly dipped my toes in Lancashire). I called at Stocks Reservoir after Slaidburn and wondered why there were cars parked outside rather than inside the small car park. They’ve started charging, that’s why. For years United Utilities who ‘own’ the land boasted about what lovely people they were in allowing the public to enjoy ‘their’ facilities for free. But now it seems that the profit of £607m the company made last year, much of it through rates we pay for letting them utilise what was once public land given away by government, is not enough. What’s the betting that the next time I visit Stocks there’ll be ugly yellow lines down the country lane along with ‘no parking’ signs.


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