Useful information regarding Public Rights of Way, improvements to the walking, cycling and riding network and the Nottingham Local Access Forum

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

Following extensive public consultation, the City Councils Executive Board formally adopted Nottingham's second Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP2). This will help deliver improvements to the walking, cycling and riding network across Nottingham. To view a copy of ROWIP1 and ROWIP2 please download the following links or visit the Transport Strategies and Policies webpage. 

How long do Public Rights of Way last for?

Once a public right of way legally comes into being then the public's right to use the 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".

The Definitive Map and Statement

So that everyone, including walkers, riders, local residents and landowners alike, know which paths or ways are public rights of way, Parliament has required local authorities, known as Surveying Authorities, to record those rights on special maps and statements, known as Definitive Maps and Statements. All known public footpaths, bridleways and byways should, by law, be recorded in the Map and Statement.

The Councils Traffic Management Team is responsible for the Nottingham Definitive Map and Statement. All public rights of way may be viewed on the online Street Register, by appointment by telephoning 0115 876 5246 or by email

Modifying the Definitive Map and Statement

Anyone may make an application to the Council to modify the Definitive Map and Statement via a Definitive Map Modification Order (DMMO). For further information on the DMMO application process click here for the Explanatory Note. To view applications for DMMO's please visit the register of DMMO applications.

Legal Changes

Highways and public rights of way may be stopped up (permanently closed) or diverted (onto a new alignment) for a number of reasons. For example it may be appropriate to close a route if it’s not needed by the public or in order to enable development to be carried out.

Receiving planning permission for a development is not consent to work or 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 or a Section 278/38 Agreement.

Register of Statutory Declarations made under Section 31(6) of the Highways Act

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 from the Nottingham City Council's Open Data website

Gating Orders

Gating Orders have been replaced by Public Spaces Protection Orders. To view information on Public Spaces Protection Orders in Nottingham please click here.

The Nottingham Local Access Forum

The NLAF was set up during 2004 as part of the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000 and advise the Council on public rights of way and public access to and through Nottingham. More information on the Local Access Forum.

We are in the process of recruiting new LAF members so if you would like further information on how to apply or what’s involved please click the link below or email or telephone John Lee on 0115 8765246.

Report a Problem

If you believe there is a problem on any path that you consider to be a public right of way, such as an obstruction or the condition of the path in general, then we would like to hear from you. Please call 0115 876 5246 or email