Using rights of way responsibly

A summary of reasonable and responsible use of public rights of way.

You have a right to 'pass and repass' along public rights of way. You may take a pram, pushchair or wheelchair if the path is suitable. If you come across an illegal obstruction then you have a right to take a short deviation around it or remove as much as is necessary to get past.

When using public rights of way please remember:

  • to have the correct maps or literature with you to find your way accurately along the route
  • to follow the countryside code
  • that the countryside is where farmers, foresters and others earn their living. Please exercise your rights with courtesy and consideration for their livelihood
  • cyclists and horseriders must not use footpaths. Cyclists should give way to riders and walkers. Horseriders should give way to walkers
  • wherever possible use public transport to get out into the countryside
  • if you use a car, do not park where it could cause obstruction to local residents or access to a field
  • if you go as a group, please walk or ride in single file where necessary (for example through crops) and do not spread out beyond the width of the path
  • if you come across problems, such as locked gates, dangerous animals, obstruction by crops, fallen or overhanging trees please help by reporting them to the county council
  • keep dogs in sight, under close control and on the lead around livestock. ┬áDo not let your dog foul a public right of way and show respect by putting dogs on leads when you meet other walkers. For more information about how to manage your dog in the countryside, see our recommendations for dog owners.