Coillte has responded to a recent article concerning rights of way published in the Irish Farmers Journal.
A Coillte spokesperson stated: “We don’t want our neighbours to have any cause for concern.”
They continued to explain that the move to legally register rights of way was made because of the impending law change.
“We are only complying with the legal requirement to legally register established rights of way. We wrote to affected landowners to explain that, inviting them to respond with any issues or concerns to a dedicated freephone number and email address,” they continued.
The spokesperson also stressed that Coillte is not seeking to change the nature of use of a right of way, which one landowner had expressed fear over.
“The updated registration doesn’t allow for any other new purpose or ‘change of use’ as was suggested in the article,” the spokesperson said.
The Coillte spokesperson stated that, in the last two and a half years, the body has assisted over 100 landowners to legally register their existing rights of way through Coillte property, with another 130 progressing towards resolution.
Where new rights of way are sought through Coillte property by landowners “we try to do a deal, agreeing a route and a fee, but it’s never tens of thousands. It’s the same process as when we seek a new right of way to one of our properties from a neighbouring landowner.”
Last week, Minister Heather Humphreys responded to widespread calls to delay the introduction of new laws governing rights of way.