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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-trails-management-standards/national-trails-management-standards
There are 13 National Trails in England, with a new National Trail, the England Coast Path currently being established. See the National Trails website for more information about each trail.
National Trails are managed by local trail partnerships, with guidance and support from Natural England. Lead partners are in place for the majority of the trails and they’re responsible for:
- receiving funding from Natural England on behalf of the local partnership
- reporting to Natural England on progress towards achieving the national quality standards
There are 4 quality standards set by Natural England. They cover a range of factors from path condition to the social and economic benefits of the trail.
The trails should be managed in a way which allows as many people as possible to enjoy a wide variety of walking and riding experiences along National Trails and through the English landscape.
Constant improvements should be made to the trail and its associated routes. It should contribute to the enhancement of the landscape, nature and historic features within the trail corridor.
Build and sustain a community of interest in caring for the trail and the landscape through which it passes.
The trails should create opportunities for local businesses to benefit from the use of the trails.
Achieving the standards
Find out more about the standards and how they’re assessed in The new deal.
Each National Trail receives a funding contribution from Natural England to make sure they are maintained to a high standard. A local match contribution is required equivalent to at least £1 for every £3 provided by Natural England.
The funding received by each trail varies depending on length and other factors affecting the cost of maintenance.