Patchetts Green Bridleways Trust
 PG: OBJECTS: CREATION: Public Path Creation Agreements - s.25 Highways Act 1980

Section 25 of the Highways Act 1980 allows a local authority (that is, a district or county council) to enter into an agreement (known as a 'Public Path Creation Agreement') with a relevant landowner to create a footpath or bridleway over land in their area.

The local authority have to consult any other local authority in whose area the path will be, but do not have to consult wider. There is no provision for any one else to be consulted or to object.

The Merry Hill Greenway path was created using s.25 Highways Act 1980
Photo: a path created under s.25 Highways Act 1980

A non-exhaustive list of examples of paths created by this method follows.

Highways Act 1980, Section 25

25. (1) A local authority may enter into an agreement with any person having the necessary power in that behalf for the dedication by that person of a footpath, bridleway or restricted byway over land in their area.

An agreement under this section is referred to in this Act as a 'public path creation agreement'.

(2) For the purposes of this section 'local authority'-

(a) in relation to land outside Greater London means a county council, [or] a district council; and

(b) in relation to land in Greater London means a London Borough Council or the Common Council.

(3) Before entering into an agreement under this section a local authority shall consult any other local authority or authorities in whose area the land concerned is situated.

(4) An agreement under this section shall be on such terms as to payment or otherwise as may be specified in the agreement and may, if it is so agreed, provide for the dedication of the footpath, bridleway or restricted byway subject to limitations or conditions affecting the public right of way over it.

(5) Where a public path creation agreement has been made it shall be the duty of the local authority who are a party to it to take all the necessary steps for securing that the footpath, bridleway or restricted byway is dedicated in accordance with it.

(6) As soon as may be after the dedication of a footpath, bridleway or restricted byway in accordance with a public path creation agreement, the local authority who are a party to the agreement shall give notice of the dedication by publication in at least one local newspaper circulating in the area in which the land to which the agreement relates is situated.

Text © 2007 Phil Wadey for Patchetts Green Bridleways Trust and The British Horse Society. Highways Act 1980 extract © Crown Copyright.