Temporary closures

The temporary closure of Public Rights of Way is sometimes necessary. We aim to keep any inconvenience to a minimum and will work to open the path as quickly as possible.


We promote temporary closures on Public Rights of Way on a frequent basis to allow works to be carried out on or near the path. To view a list of current, future and recently expired temporary path closures visit the path closure register.

Closures take three forms:

  • By notice: The path will be closed for no more than five days to allow the Statutory Undertakers (Gas, Water and Electricity) to carry out works to their services.
  • Emergency: The path will be closed for up to three weeks. We can promote a maximum of two consecutive emergency orders.
  • By order: The path will be closed for a maximum of six months. Extensions beyond this period have to be approved by the Secretary of State.

Questions about closures

Why do we close paths?

Paths are closed as a last resort. However when we and the company or the persons carrying out the work in the vicinity do not wish to put the public at risk, it is sometimes necessary to close the path.

Is there an alternative route?

We make every effort to ensure that there is an alternative route available. Sometimes this may be slightly longer than the original.

Can I object to a temporary closure?

No, however we are very happy to discuss the closure with you. We do aim to minimise the impact on the public and keep the length of the closure to an absolute minimum.

The surface of the path has been left in a terrible condition. What can you do?

The applicant is required to put the path back in a usable condition and of a similar construction to what it was prior to the works. Please let us know if you find a path in a poor condition following works and we will contact the applicant straight away.

Where can I see a list of current closures on rights of way?

We will be publishing a list of all temporary closures to enable you to plan your walks.

Making an application

If you wish to make an application please read the information and then download the Application for Temporary Closure of Public Right of Way form attached to this page.

Reinstatement on completion of the works

The path should be reinstated to the same construction as it was prior to the works. If the path had a tarmac surface then a similar surface is required, if it had a cobbled (setted) surface then this should be replaced. Inspections will be carried out.

Related documents

The following document is in Portable Document Format (PDF). You can download software to view PDF documents for free from the Adobe website (opens in a new window)