Public Rights of Way (including footpaths)

Public Rights of Way (including footpaths)

Public Rights of Way (PRoW) include footpaths, bridle paths, restricted byways and byways open to all traffic.

Rogate parish is lucky to have an extensive network of paths, making it easy for residents and visitors to get out and about in our beautiful countryside.  Users are reminded to abide by the Countryside Code

Landowner responsibility:

  • Maintain existing stiles and gates (must obtain consent from Highways Authority for new stiles/gates)
  • Keep PRoWs clear of obstructions and overhanding (including side) vegetation
  • Not to plough paths at the edge of fields
  • Keep cross field paths free from crops
  • Not to keep dangerous animals where a PRoW passes
  • Not to deter or endanger the public

West Sussex County Council, as the highways authority, are responsible for the maintenance of PRoWs:

  • Maintain the surface of the PRoW network in good repair and control vegetation (other than crops) growing from it
  • Maintain most bridges and boardwalks over natural water courses
  • Enforcement work – working with landowners so they comply with the law
  • Correct line on the ground
  • Recording Rights of Way on the definitive map

A Parish Council has no obligation or legal duty to do any work on PRoWs but has the legal power (without removing WSCC responsibility) to:

  • Definitive map – to hold for public inspection
  • Undertake the maintenance of any PRoW in the parish – maintenance means the cutting back of surface vegetation (other than crops) and surface repairs
  • To erect lighting on any footpath or bridleway
  • To erect signs warning of local dangers
  • Obstruction of the PRoW – to prosecute anyone who obstructs/ploughs or crops a path
  • Waymarking – to insist the highway authority signposts a PRoW or to signpost it on behalf of, and with the consent of, the highway authority
  • To create new PRoW by agreement with the landowner

While Parish councils are permitted to spend a limited amount of money on the above a full council meeting would need to consider the costs and future responsibility and deem the expense be of benefit to the community.

Rogate Parish Council work with WSCC local access Ranger over RPoW issues by reporting issues accurately with relevant information – location, photos, where issues originate from and to understand WSCC timetables investigating issues.

We encourage residents to Report an issue with a Public Right of Way – West Sussex County Council with as much information as possible and letting us know the detail.