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Dorset Council (19 012 121)

Category : Transport and highways > Rights of way

Decision : Upheld

Decision date : 03 Feb 2020

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: Mrs X complains about a blocked footpath. The Council has offered to do a site visit and meet with Mrs X to discuss the matter. Mrs X has agreed to this offer. Therefore, the Ombudsman has discontinued this investigation.

The complaint

  1. The complainant, who I refer to here as Mrs X, complains that a footpath has been blocked and the Council has delayed resolving the issue.
  2. Mrs X says the blocked footpath has meant she and others need to walk on the road, which is dangerous.

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The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. We investigate complaints about ‘maladministration’ and ‘service failure’ which we refer to as ‘fault’. We provide a free service, but must use public money carefully. We may decide not to start or continue with an investigation if we are satisfied with the actions a council has taken or proposes to take. (Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(7), as amended)

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How I considered this complaint

  1. I considered the information, emails and documents provided by Mrs X and the Council. Mrs X and the Council had an opportunity to comment on an earlier draft of this decision.

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What I found

  1. Mrs X lives near a footpath. This footpath was in use by the public until access was blocked.
  2. The Council has offered to do a site visit and meet with Mrs X to discuss the right of way. Mrs X has accepted this offer. It is for this reason that the Ombudsman has discontinued this investigation.

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Final decision

  1. I have discontinued the investigation into this complaint.

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Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

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