Across Dartmoor walkers will find stiles are as much a feature as the stone walls or even the ponies that are the emblem of the National park. But could they become a thing of the past?
The parks authority is keen to make Dartmoor as accessible to as many people as possible. Andrew Watson is responsible for the policy and says its not about destroying all the historic stiles as its only those that have fallen into a state of disrepair that will be replaced.
Given that a lot of the oldest ones are made from hardy local stone or granite then they may never been replaced.
The new gates are designed to self close to ensure that livestock will not be able to wander freely and the national park will pay the cost of replacing the broken stiles for landowners.
There has been one case nationally in which a walker has tried to sue authorities after falling on a stile and breaking a leg, but again, Andrew Watson says that's not a reason to replace them.
He dismisses press reports that the stiles can be too difficult for obese people but he told me they can be a challenge for some, particularly families with pushchairs or hikers with heavy rucksacks.
He says the ultimate aim is to ensure that the biggest challenge for visitors should only be Dartmoor's rough terrain .