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Vehicle accesses, crossovers and dropped kerbs

There are procedures in place to help people gain vehicle access from the road on to their property across footways and verges which are part of the highway.


These procedures ensure that the safety of other road users and pedestrians is not compromised, and that damage is not caused to the road, footway or the utilities underneath.

Vehicle access onto the road (highway)

A proposal for a new access or to extend and existing access will need to satisfy both planning and highway requirements before it can proceed. The following steps should guide you through the necessary procedures.

Step 1

If you live on a classified (A, B or C) road, you will need planning permission for a new access to your property, in addition to permission from the us as Highway Authority.

Consent from us for the construction, amendment or removal of a vehicular access does not imply or expressly give approval to the construction of a hard standing, driveway or garaging within your own curtilage. In addition to the possibility that planning approval may be required to form or amend an access from the highway, you may also need to consult the local planning authority about works within your property.

To make a planning application, you'll need to produce plans of your proposals and pay a fee to the relevant district or borough council.

Planning permission is not usually required if the access is onto an unclassified (minor) road. It may still be needed if the access forms part of more extensive works or is in a conservation area.

You should seek advice from your local planning office before proceeding with an application. If they say that planning permission is not required, make sure you have that decision in writing as it will be necessary to provide this as part of your application.

Step 2

Once you have planning permission for the proposed access or, where appropriate, confirmation stating it is not needed, you should read the following information.

Refusal of a request for a vehicle crossing

If planning permission has been granted for an access, then we (as the highway authority) are unlikely to refuse a request for the access.

If planning permission is not required for the access then it is rare for a request to be refused. However, if we believe your proposal puts other road users at risk or seriously interferes with the free flow of traffic on a busy road, then it may be turned down.

Constructing a vehicle crossing

We no longer provide quotes for the work to be carried out by ourselves. However, we allow private contractors to construct vehicular accesses.

As we have a responsibility to manage all work on the local highway network, we require contractors to have certain personnel qualified under the New Roads and Street Works Act accreditation scheme.

The contractor should also carry public liability insurance to a minimum of £5 million.

It's in your interests to ensure that any contractor working for you conforms to these minimum standards as the cost of claims through accidents or utility apparatus damage can be very high and will be passed on to you for settlement.

Works by a private contractor must be undertaken to our specification and design criteria and be guaranteed by you as the applicant for 2 years.

If your chosen contractor has previously worked within the county in the past year, they are likely to already be registered with us and you'll be able to select them as part of your application.

Please ensure you've been provided with a reference number from your contractor which will be needed when you submit your application. It should be in the form of your surname and postcode - like SMITHDE43AG.

Any contractors who have not previously registered, will need to register their company details before you can apply.

Utility apparatus, street furniture and street lighting

Either you or your contractor will need to obtain details of the nature and position of utility apparatus.

The full costs of any alteration, diversion or protection of utility apparatus necessitated by the construction of a vehicle crossing will be paid by you.

If a street light or other street furniture requires repositioning prior to the installation of a vehicle access, the applicant will meet the full cost of the relocation as required. Street nameplates are the responsibility of the borough or district council and you'll need to contact that authority for permission to reposition or replace them.

Bus shelters are the responsibility of various owners and you should obtain appropriate permission to reposition or replace them.

Other permissions

In the case of rented property (including council property tenants) you'll need to obtain the permission of the property owner. Owner occupiers may need to consult their property deeds for specific conditions or covenants regarding parking on the property.

Constructing your new drive or hard standing

Work to construct your drive or hard standing on your own property would need to be carried out by yourself or your private contractor.

Closing an unauthorised vehicle crossing

We have authority to take action to prevent use of unauthorised crossings.

Charges

Permission for a vehicle access is subject to a charge of £50 to cover the cost of inspection of the works and administration and is non-refundable. This payment needs to be made at the time of application and can be paid by either you or your contractor.

Time limit to complete

Works should be completed within 3 months of approval.

Once the works start, they should be completed as quickly as possible, normally within 3 days.

Maintaining the vehicular access

Provided that the access is constructed in accordance with the specification, the access becomes part of the highway and is then maintained by us.

If we believe that the works have been undertaken incorrectly, we will make investigations, which may include drill holes, and recharge the cost of these to you if the work is found to be faulty.

Next step

If you'd like to apply for a vehicle crossing, you need to make sure you have sufficient space and visibility on your property. Please read the technical specification documents attached to this page before proceeding with an application.

Apply for vehicle access or a dropped kerb