As most people will now be aware, the afternoon of Tuesday 10th September saw a female walker and her dog get trampled by Cows on the footpath in the field immediately before Magpie Mine. The lady was very badly injured, and sadly her dog died at the scene of the incident. Derbyshire Police and The Air Ambulance Service arrived on the scene relatively quickly, and with the assistance of locals and other walkers, the Cows were secured in a closed field whist the lady was airlifted to hospital. Our understanding is that there is a Bull in the field with several dozen Heifers, and whilst this is accepted practice, it is favourable to keep this type of herd away from rights of way or provide warning signs/fencing.
As a result of the incident, Derbyshire Police, The National Park Authority, Derbyshire County Council, and the Health and Safety Executive (who are now conducting an investigation into the incident) have taken the decision to close the field (and footpaths which cross it) until the tenant farmer moves the Cattle to a safer location.
UPDATE: 6th October 2019
Unfortunately, due to the inaction of The Health & Safety Executive and Derbyshire County Council, the footpaths which have been formally closed are easily bypassed (by both members of the public and the cows) meaning that the entire area shown below (outlined in red) should be considered dangerous and avoided until the owner of the cows decides to do the right thing and clear them from the fields in question.
Sheldon is a very popular place for visitors to pass through, and there are a number of walks that go through our beautiful village in all directions. We love the fact that visitors coming through stop at the village hall for one of our famous cream teas, and we are also of course very proud, as are our farmers, of our landscape including all of the dry stone walls that keep our fields in good order.
However, sometimes not everyone understands or realises the preciousness of our village, landscape and walls. Nor indeed do they realise how important it is when out in a working farming environment, to keep the walls and gates as they found them and not disturb the animals. Recent incidents noted by residents include damage/graffiti to village property, inconsiderate parking, people climbing over and on top of walls, children playing on silage bails, dropping litter, dog fouling amongst cattle, dogs killing sheep, and visitors swearing at local residents! It is also worth noting that some of the people in charge of visiting youth groups don’t set a very good example to their charges (allowing theirs dogs to run free in fields full of lambs, ignoring advice of landowners etc). We must stress that this is a minority of people, and it isn’t just/all youth groups who behave in this way.
We’d therefore like to remind everyone that, whilst visitors are very welcome, we’d ask them to keep to the countryside code and remember that ours is a working village, with the fields owned and worked by our local farmers. Please remember that the village street needs to be kept free of obstructions for farm machinery to pass, and that all of the green spaces in the village (with the exception of the playing field) are in private ownership; they aren’t car parks.
This might sound like nimby-ism, but please remember that it is perfectly possible on a busy weekend for our population to swell from 80 people to over 1000; we all want to enjoy the Peak District and our lovely village…why spoil it?
Sheldon saw some spectacular snowfall over the past week, leading to the village being cut-off for approximately 48 hours! Things are slowly getting back to normal now, with snowdrifts being the only major hazard on the roads. We understand that all roads into the village are now open, but that the back road to Chelmorton is still suffering from fairly significant drifting.
Several of the footpaths in and around the village are also covered by significant snow drifts, up to two metres deep in places. As such, many of the drystone walls and gateways are totally covered with snow. Whilst it is possible to walk over these drifts, and therefore over the walls and gates, we would ask that you refrain from doing so as the walls and gates are likely to become damaged.
If you have any photographs of the village that you’d like to share, please contact us.