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Home arrow News arrow Latest arrow New rights of way legislation comes into force in England
New rights of way legislation comes into force in England Print E-mail
Wednesday, 03 May 2006

Parts of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 (NERCA) and Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 (CROWA) extinguishing motorised users rights to drive many ancient highways came into effect in England on 2nd May 2006. The DEFRA news release can be viewed here:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/news/2006/060501a.htm

This means for motorised users that it is now an offence under the Road Traffic Act 1988 (RTA88) to drive along a RoW formerly shown as a RUPP (now a Restricted Byway - RB). Any under recorded vehicular rights along Footpath and Bridleway are also extinguished. There are some exceptions to the extinguishing of rights but they may be very difficult to prove in court. Best advice for users at the moment is not to drive RUPP/RB or dual status routes unless they have good reason to believe it is still legal to do so.

The changes this legislation brings do not directly effect existing RoW recorded as BOAT or UCR (shown as ORPA on OS maps) so users may continue to drive these as before i.e. subject to TRO's and accuracy of maps etc. From 1st October 2006 National Parks will have the power to TRO any unsealed road within the park, something they have previously had to rely on the Highway Authority to do. We can probably expect many more closures of BOAT & UCR when this takes effect.

It is not yet known when this legislation will commence in Wales.

To summarise:

In England - Footpath, Bridleway, Restricted Byway, RUPP, not recorded - Offence to drive. BOAT & UCR/ORPA business as usual.

In Wales - Business as usual for now.

 
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