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Public Rights of Way are routes over which the public have a legal right to pass and re-pass at any time of the day and night and are protected by highway law and legislation.

Rights of Way Improvement Plan

The Rights of Way Improvement Plans (ROWIP) 1 and 2 provides the focus and priorities to deliver improvements to the local rights of way network. To view the ROWIP’s please use the links below to download the relevant document. 

The Nottingham Local Access Forum

The Forum was set up in 2004 as part of the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000 and advise the Council and other statutory bodies on public rights of way and public access to and through Nottingham, comment on planning applications and local and national policy. 


Once legally created a public right of way lasts forever unless it is formally stopped up (permanently closed) or diverted (onto a new alignment) by an Act of Parliament, Instrument, or other legal event. Please see the section below on "Legal changes to the public rights of way network".

A highway or public right of way may only be stopped up (permanently closed) or diverted (onto a new alignment) for specific reasons. For example, it may be appropriate to stop up / divert a public right of way if it’s not needed by the public. Or it may be necessary to stop up or divert a public right of way to enable a new housing development to be carried out.

Planning permission is not permission to build on a highway or other public right of way. This is a separate legal process and failure to obtain the correct consents before starting work can lead to additional costs, delays and enforcement action being taken.

If you wish to divert or stop up a highway or other public right of way, you will need to apply for a legal order. You may also need other consents such as a temporary Traffic Regulation Order. Please see the “Developers Guidance” above.

So that walkers, riders, local residents and landowners know which paths or ways are public rights of way, Councils have a duty to record those rights on statutory maps and statements, known as the Definitive Map and Statement. All known public footpaths, bridleways and byways should, by law, be recorded.

The Councils Technical Services team is responsible for Nottingham’s Definitive Map and Statement. All public rights of way recorded on the Definitive Map and Statement can be viewed online here Highway  Register, by appointment by telephoning 

Anyone may make an application for a Definitive Map Modification Order (DMMO) to modify the Definitive Map and Statement.

For further information on the application process please see the Explanatory Note.

To view all applications for DMMO's please visit the register of DMMO applications.

If you wish to make an application please use the forms and guidance notes below. If you wish to discuss the application process or you require an ordnance survey map of the relevant area to use for the application and / or user evidence form(s) please use the Contact Us details above

If you wish to ask a question or report a problem on a right of way please contact

Under Section 31(6) of the Highways Act 1980 a landowner may deposit a statutory declaration with the highway authority. The declaration enables landowners to formally acknowledge any public rights of way dedicated across their land and that they have no intention of dedicating any further public rights of way.

The register can be downloaded here

Contact us

If you would like to discuss your application or require further information on the LAF please contact us

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