Public Right of Way

What exactly is a "Green Lane", and where can I drive? This is one of the most often asked questions. Hopefully it is answered here.

A public right of way is a route, over which the public has a legal right to pass. All public rights of way are public highways. The land over which the Public Right of Way runs, is usually private land, and is the property of a specific landowner.

What we have tried to do in the table below, is to show what Public Rights of way are accessible by vehicles.
Rights of Way with NO Vehicle Access


Pedestrians only. In rare cases vehicles may have rights, but this requires careful and extremely accurate information.


Pedestrian, cyclists and horses. In rare cases vehicles may have rights, but this requires careful and extremely accurate information.

Rights of Way with POSSIBLE vehicle right of access.

Byways Open to All Traffic (B.O.A.T.)

A byway open to all traffic, or B.O.A.T., is a road where it is legal to use a vehicles of any kind, but which is mainly used for walking, or for riding horses. Vehicles MUST give way to other users, and comply with all traffic regulations. Vehicles must be taxed, insured, and have a current MoT.

Un-Classified County Road (U.C.R.)

May have vehicular Right of Way. A grey area and depends on available accurate information.

Green Lanes

A "Green Lane" is a term used to describe an unsurfaced track usually bounded by hedges and often established a long time ago. The term has no legal meaning and if there is a public right of way along such a track, it will be classified as a B.O.A.T.

Road Used as Public Path (R.U.P.P.)

A road used as public path, or R.U.P.P. may be used for walking and horse riding, since the NERC act 2006 these have been reclassified as restricted byways and you are not legally allowed to drive them unless you have permission or a valid reason to need access to the lane.

Permitted Path

Permitted paths are not roads, but are routes which landowners allow the public to use. They can be closed at any time by the landowner.

The Country Code

There are groups of lobbyists who do not want to see any vehicles being driven on Green Lanes.
In order to make the most of a Green Lane, and allow others to enjoy the experience in the future,
it is necessary to follow a few simple rules known as the Country Code.

  • Enjoy the countryside and respect its life and work.
  • Guard against all risk of fire. 
  • Give pedestrians, cyclists, horses, and animals the right of way.
  • Keep to public rights of way across farmland.
  • Use gates cross fences, hedges and walls.
  • Fasten all gates.
  • Leave livestock, crops and machinery alone.
  • Take your litter home.
  • Help to keep all water clean.
  • Protect wildlife, plants and trees.
  • Take special care on country roads.
  • Make no unnecessary noise.
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