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Public rights of way policy and improvement plan

The laws in England and Wales provide you with the right to walk, ride, cycle and drive in public rights of way in the countryside. Public rights of way include footpaths, byways and bridleways. The public can use a public right of way to pass and repass, according to their status:

  • Public footpath – over which the right is on foot only
  • Public bridleway – over which the right of way is on foot, on horseback and on pedal cycle, possibly with an additional right to drive animals
  • Byway open to all traffic – over which there are vehicular rights, but is generally used by walkers, horse riders and cyclists

Public Rights of Way are continually being created through presumed dedication, or by agreement with the Highway Authority. On Public Rights of Way you can:

  • take a pram, pushchair or wheelchair
  • take a dog (on a lead or under close control)
  • take a short route around an illegal obstruction or remove it sufficiently to get past

Public rights of way in North East Lincolnshire

North East Lincolnshire has approximately 200 kilometres of Public Rights of Way including 140 footpaths and 61 bridleways.

There are currently no “Restricted Byways” or “Byways Open to all Traffic” recorded on the Definitive Map and Statement.

We are responsible for the Public Rights of Way in 22 Parishes, and within the urban areas of Grimsby and Cleethorpes.

Public rights of way enforcement policy

We have a duty to protect and assert the right of the public to use and enjoy the public rights of way network. This includes appropriate enforcement action where necessary.

The Enforcement of Public Rights of Way Policy (PDF, 415KB)  explains how we enforce and sets out the legal requirements for owner/occupiers who have land crossed by a public right of way.

The Public Rights of Way Landowner Guide (PDF, 4MB)  provides supporting information for owner/occupiers in respect of paths that cross agricultural land, and sets out our stance in respect of a reinstatement issue.

Public rights of way improvement plan

The Rights of Way Improvement Plan (PDF, 8MB)  gives a 10 year plan for the management and improvement of our rights of way network. We plan to make sure North East Lincolnshire has provide better public rights for walkers, cyclists, equestrians, including people with limited mobility.

Related websites


Ramblers Association

Natural England

Contact details

Public Rights Of Way, New Oxford House, 2 George Street, Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire, DN31 1HB

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 01472 324500