Bridgend County Borough Council,Civic Offices, Angel Street, Bridgend, CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643643
Text Relay:
18001 01656 643643
Fax: 01656 668126
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Monday - Thursday 8.30am - 5.00pm
Friday 8.30am - 4.30pm

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Bridgend County Borough Council, as Highway Authority, has a duty to assert and protect the rights of the public to use and enjoy rights of way and to ensure that they remain open and usable at all times.

Footpaths, bridleways and restricted byways are all public highways and they only differ from other forms of public highway, such as roads, by the type of traffic entitled to use them. There is a right to pass and re-pass along all public highways, including public rights of way, at all times. And, the lack of use has no effect on the legal existence of a public right of way.

Bridgend County Borough Council recognises its duty under s.130 of the Highways Act 1980 to:

  • assert and protect the rights of the public to use and enjoy the rights of way.
  • prevent, as far as possible, the stopping up or obstruction of the rights of way.
  • prevent unlawful encroachment.

To undertake these duties Bridgend County Borough Council may take legal proceedings or any steps they deem appropriate. Wherever possible though the Council endeavours to work in partnership with all landowners or occupiers and will make all reasonable attempts to resolve problems without recourse to the courts. The Council will, however, make full use of its legal powers including prosecution, serving notice or taking action under common law as it considers appropriate in each case.

‘de minimis’ considerations

If it is found that there is a small encroachment or obstruction that does not materially affect the users of the path, the Council may regard it as ‘de minimis’ The landowner or occupier should then be informed of the offence and be advised of management methods to prevent further encroachment, obstruction and restoration of the correct width of the path at a later date.


Last Updated: 24/04/2013
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