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Landowners / Occupiers Responsibilities

  • Keep all Rights of Way free from obstruction and encroachment. This includes barbed wire, locked gates and machinery. Temporary electric fencing should not be placed across a path nor close enough at the side of a path so as to be dangerous to people or animals using the path. An electric fence across a path is an obstruction, however in some cases an insulated handle acting as a safe crossing point and adequate warning notices may be acceptable.
  • Provide and maintain stiles and gates. In a safe condition and to a standard of repair required to prevent unreasonable interference with the path users.
  • Seek authorisation from the Highway Authority to install a gate in a new boundary.
  • Seek authorisation from the Highway Authority for a temporary closure if it is necessary for works to be carried out across a public right of way
  • Cut back overhanging vegetation, including hedges and branches and fallen trees.
  • Comply with the law relating to reinstating paths after ploughing, and not allow any crop (other than grass) to grow on a Right of Way.
  • Do not keep any bull in a field crossed by a Right of Way, unless it is less than 10 months old, or is of a recognised beef breed and accompanied by heifers. 
  • Not place misleading signs on or near a Right of Way
  • Provide new bridges over new or widened drainage ditches.
  • Section 130A-D under the Highways Act 1980 is a mechanism by which the public or user groups can serve notice on the Local Authority to remove an obstruction after appropriate notice. It is then the Local Authorities duty to serve notice on the landowner and enforce the removal of the obstruction.