THE defenders of Hayslan fields have made great play over the fact that footpaths cross over this land.

Yet nobody has ever suggested these should be closed – indeed, they can't be closed.

This really doesn't alter the fact that the rest of the land is private.

However delightful it might be, the public really doesn't have free access.

Our American reader, Greg Ashteron, hit the nail on the head (incidentally, let's not try to muddy the waters with irrelevant and rude comments about gun control and our American healthcare systems).

I'm not supporting the building of houses, but nobody has the right of access to private land they do not own.

And yes, a great many of local folk have indeed made the point that it is an area on which they can 'exercise' their dogs.

I'm with Mary Taylor (July 18); such areas of openness would be far better off with dogs, as well as houses!

Jane Noble