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Definitive map and statement

This is the legal record for all known public rights of way. It's a visual record on an Ordnance Survey base map. It's available to view during office hours and by appointment.

To arrange a visit to our offices please email:

Or there may be a copy in your local library or local council office.

The definitive statement

The definitive statement is a list of all known public rights of way which offers a description of each route, in particular the start and finish point and general direction. It may also include details of the surface, the width and additional information.

Finding out the name of a path

If you know the name of the path it helps us to locate it immediately.

In Derbyshire we refer to each path by the parish name, the status and a number, for example 'Matlock Public Footpath 70' or 'Brampton Public Bridleway 73'.

These are shown on the definitive map.

Copies of the definitive map

Our copyright licence with the Ordnance Survey only allows us to supply you with an A4 photocopy of an area free of charge. However, we're currently updating our maps to provide online digital copies on the Derbyshire Partnership mapping portal.

Parish councils

Copies of the definitive map can be supplied on loan. This enables us to retrieve them for updates and replacement.

Parish councils will have to sign an agreement to that effect and to confirm that they will not photocopy the map as this will infringe copyright.

Checking properties to see if they're affected by a public right of way

If you're buying a property and you want to check if it's affected by a public right of way, please check the register of applications for public rights of way.

Registering a path

If you know of a path that is not shown on the definitive map, you have a right to make an application to add it to the map.

Diverting paths that cross your land.

To find out more about diverting a path that crosses your land please read our information about Public Path Orders.

If there's a claim that a path goes over your land

If someone claims that there's a path that goes over your land, you can check all the current applications to modify the definitive map and statement.

If your deeds don't show a path

The deeds to your property may or may not show the path, but they're not the legal record for public rights of way. Please consult the definitive map and statement.

Your responsibilities if you own a path

If your deeds show that you own a path, you have certain responsibilities:

  • you must keep it free of obstruction.
  • you cannot erect a gate or stile on the route without our consent

We have a responsibility to maintain the path in a safe condition, however, if the path has shared access to premises there may be a joint responsibility with the owner of the land.

The width of paths

This depends on several factors:

  • there could be a legal width recorded in the definitive statement
  • there may be an enactment which declares a width for the path
  • if the path crosses arable land it will be subject to the Rights of Way Act 1990 and the required widths - please visit ploughed and cropped paths for more details
  • if a path has an established width between walls or hedges then this will be taken to be the legal width of the path, unless other evidence comes to light

If the path on the ground differs from that on the definitive map

You may apply for a definitive map modification order to correct the map.