Information on how to report a problem, how improvements are made, ploughing over rights of way, permissive paths, encountering livestock and how well the rights of way service perform.
You can report a problem with a public right of way quickly and easily:
Responsibility for public rights of way maintenance and enforcement lies with the Countryside Access Team. A small team of officers keep as many paths open as is possible for the public to use and enjoy.
In the summer months routes naturally get overgrown and we are busy trying to organise the clearance programme. It is not possible for all paths to be cut back but we try to get through the priority routes to the best of our ability.
Structural repairs and improvements to gates, bridges, and path surfaces tends to take place in winter, and we also carry out our signposting and way-marking work during this period. You may therefore find that your issue may not be resolved for several months. Please be patient as we try and resolve all the problems reported to us.
To notify us of a problem or defect with a public right of way, please complete the online form via the link below. You will need the following information to complete the form:
Report a problem with a public right of way online
We do try and keep as many routes open as possible taking into account the relative importance of the route itself, and the resources that we have available. We do carry out a random survey of the routes and report information on the quantity of the network that is open to a basic standard, and the accessibility of the rights of way network.
The countryside access team have achieved Customer Service Excellence status. We have developed a customer charter in consultation with the Public Rights of Way Joint Liaison Group and the Local Access Forum.
A copy of the customer charter is available below.
Customer Charter (pdf 76kb opens in new window)
There is a statutory duty on East Riding of Yorkshire Council to look after the public rights of way network. With such an extensive network across a large geographical area carrying out this duty causes some logistical problems and it is not always possible to keep all rights of way open. We are proud of the work that we do and we believe that we compare favourably with all other councils who have a similar duty to keep the network open. We believe that it is important not only that we measure what we do, but that the public can openly compare our performance each year. With the help of our rights of way liaison group, and the Local Access Forum we have devised a set of key performance measures.
The key indicators are:
Every local highway authority has had to prepare and publish a Rights of Way Improvement Plan. It is a strategic document that sets out how the council will improve the public rights of way network and was accomplished through consultation with local residents and interest groups. There is also background information that supports this plan which is complimented by the contents of the Local Transport Plan.
Rights of Way Improvement Plan (pdf 3mb opens in new window)
Rights of Way Improvement Plan background information (pdf 669kb opens in new window)
A range of other policy and strategy documents is also published by the department, some of which are chargeable and may be of interest
Price list of published policy and strategy documents (pdf 104kb opens in new window)
Farmers and landowners can only plough cross-field footpaths and bridleways where it cannot be avoided. It is a legal requirement that these paths are reinstated by making sure it is reasonably convenient to use, and clearly marked on the ground within 14 days of ploughing.
Any subsequent disturbance of the same path, such as harrowing, should be reinstated within 24 hours.
It is not permissible to plough:
The Rights of Way Act 1990 sets out legal widths for the reinstatement of public rights of way after ploughing or sowing crops.
Paths that have been disturbed should be reinstated to a minimum width of:
Farmers are not permitted to plough field edge paths and the minimum widths that should be left undisturbed are:
A permissive path, sometimes called a 'concessionary path', is when the landowner allows the public to use a route, with the clear intention that it should not become a public right of way.
The landowner may erect notices to that effect and, perhaps, close the path once a year. These often supplement the rights of way network at a local level and provide solutions for landowners to problems they face with trespass.
Yes, livestock can be kept in fields crossed by rights of way. Bulls over the age of 10 months are prohibited from being kept in a field crossed by a public right of way on their own.
Cows or heifers may accompany beef bulls, but dairy breed bulls are not permitted, even when accompanied by other cattle.
Sometimes you will her about incidents involving walkers and cattle. Please consider your own safety when walking through fields containing cattle. They are normally well behaved, but do not respond well to dogs, particularly when calves are present.
You may take your dog with you on a public right of way, provided that it is kept under close control and remains on the path and does not "worry" livestock. When walking through a field with sheep then you must keep it on a lead. When walking in a field with cows and calves please be conscious of the behaviour of the cows, and release your dog from the lead if approached. Always try and look out for a safe exit point in case you are approached by aggressive farm animals.