Rights of way and accessing land

Overview

You have the right to access some land for walking or certain other leisure activities.

You can:

  • use public roads and pavements or public rights of way, for example footpaths or bridleways
  • use your right to roam on open access land including mountains, moors, heaths, downs, common land and some land around the England Coast Path

If neither of these apply, you may still be able to access private land if:

  • the land was used as a public right of way in the past - check old maps and documents
  • the land was accessed by the public for at least 20 years and nobody has asked them to stop
  • the landowner has given permission (‘permissive access’)

Help protect the natural environment by following the Countryside Code.