Apply to record a public right of way

The Definitive Map and Statement is the legal record of public right of ways, although it may not show all routes. You can apply to have a public right of way recorded if you have evidence to suggest that it exists.

An unrecorded path or way may exist through:

  • historical evidence
  • unchallenged use by the public for at least 20 years

Due to the legal process involved to update the map, we recommend contacting us at [email protected] to discuss your application first.

If a path exists on the map but you believe it's inaccurate, you can apply to correct it.

When to record a public right of way

You may need to record a right of way when:

  • the land crossed by route has plans for development
  • you see a new sign claiming there is no right of way
  • you meet someone who tells you not to use the way
  • you find that the way is obstructed where it wasn't before, such as by a fence

How to apply

You will need to provide:

Submit your application to [email protected]

View our register of DMMO's to check if we have already received an application for the path or way you wish to record.

Notifying the landowner or occupier

When making an application, you must serve a notice to each landowner or occupier affected by:

  • applying for landownership information through the Land Registry
  • conducting your own local inquiry, such as asking residents about the land

In exceptional cases where a landowner or occupier can not be found, we may allow the notice to be posted at the beginning and end of the route for the attention of “owner/occupier.”

Landowners can also apply to protect their land from being registered as a public right of way.

How we advertise your application

If we accept the application and make an Order, we must advertise the Order by:

  • placing a notice in the local newspaper
  • placing a notice at each end of the path or way

There will be a 42 day consultation period for members of the public to give comments (representations) to be made.

If we receive any comments (representations)

Members of the public will have an opportunity to comment if they are for or against the Order.

If we do not receive any comments against the Order, then the Order will be processed.

If comments are made against the Order and remain unresolved, we will refer the Order and comments to the Secretary of State for determination.

Help with gathering evidence