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Application guidance and procedure

Any work needed to bring the condition of new routes up to an acceptable standard will normally be required of the applicant, although the legally required signposts may be supplied by the council.

It is a good idea to seek the views of the local group of The Ramblers, The British Horse Society and the Open Spaces Society, as well as the parish or town council when formulating proposals to affect footpaths and bridleways. This can help to prevent delays occurring at later stages of the applications, which can be costly.

For example, objections not withdrawn can lead to a public inquiry which could be held as much as 1 year from the order date. This might hold up new farming practices or development, because the old legal line of the way must remain open until an order is confirmed.

Early consultation also helps to generate a climate for negotiation between interested parties. Very often an acceptable proposal can be worked out before the formal order-making stage is reached.

You should read the notes for guidance carefully before completing the application form.

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