Rights of Way Improvement Plan

A Strategic Planning Policy Document

The Public Rights of Way network is a valuable resource for both present and future generations. It provides;

  • recreation, leisure and social interaction benefits;
  • health and exercise;
  • traffic-free routes;
  • access to residential areas;
  • access corridors to public open space, parks and the countryside;
  • access to local community facilities, for example, schools, sports grounds, village halls, etc;
  • access to public transport interchanges;
  • access to residential areas and places of work.

There is a clear commitment, both at national and local level, to safeguard and improve the public rights of way network. Creating access opportunities for all and widening participation in physical activity is at the forefront of health and social inclusion policy.

Sections 60 & 62 of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 imposes a statutory duty for highway authorities to prepare, publish, monitor and review a Rights of Way Improvement Plan within a 10 year framework starting from 2007. It is a policy document that must:

  • link with strategic planning at an authority-wide level;
  • demonstrate pro-active planning, be focused on the public and be informed by consultation;
  • deliver improvements for existing users and foster participation by current non-users.

Public rights of way management is no longer a countryside issue for rural authorities, but a wider resource management issue for rural, semi-rural and urban authorities.


The Team Capability

The Team can offer a ‘one-stop’ service for the preparation, publishing, delivery, review and monitoring of Rights of Way Improvement Plans nationally. In addition, they can also

  • assist with delivery of the statutory duty;

  • undertake public and stakeholder consultation;

  • undertake survey design and implementation;

  • assess user needs;

  • assist with techniques to widen participation in the use and access to public rights of way;

  • identify, assess and prioritise public rights of way improvement options;

  • co-ordinate inclusion into all the other strategic planning documents within the authority.


For further details, advice or assistance contact
Jenny Trevor on +44 (0) 207 193 2053 or go to 'contact us'