by Malcolm Cook
Did you know, the Peak District is the spiritual home of opening up the countryside to all people? 80 years ago, 400 or so working people from Manchester and Sheffield walked on private moorlands in the ‘Mass Trespass at Kinder Scout’, all led by a young Mechanic from Manchester called Benny Rothman.
Then, as now, some people thought there was nothing they could do about it, so why bother..? While others took a different perspective and stood for the their freedom and the public opinion, they were upstanding not by standing citizens. Although the actual trespass was all of 50 yards off the footpath and about 100 yards long and according to a Game keepers recall they shouted and cheered a bit, turned around and went home.
This has become one of the most rewarding examples of popular protest in 20th Century Britain and the trespassers are regarded as heroes by Britain’s large population of “ramblers”. who broke the law and were prepared to risk prison so we all can walk in the Peak District, along Public Footpaths, through National Parks and Nature Reserves throughout England freely today.
Our National Parks
by John Muir,
Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into the trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like leaves of autumn.