Request a change to a public path

Public rights of way can be diverted (or in some circumstances extinguished or created) by a public path order either in the interests of the land owner or occupier or in the interests of the public. Applications can be made to the public path order officer on 01772 532459 or by email via with "Public path order" as the subject.

The current cost of a diversion application is likely to be £2000-£3000 (but might be substantially higher) in addition to the cost of providing the new route to the satisfaction of the county council. The diversion procedure takes a minimum of eight months to process if it is highest priority but generally longer. In the event that there are objections to the proposal, it will take longer and there is no guarantee of a successful outcome. In addition, as we are currently dealing with a large number of applications it is possible that it would take some months before the procedure could commence.

Furthermore, there is provision in the Highways Act 1980 Section 28, for the payment of compensation to anyone who is able to show that the value of his interest in land has depreciated, or that he has suffered damage by being disturbed in his enjoyment of land. You are advised that before a diversion order is made, the applicant is required to agree to defray any compensation that may become payable as a consequence a diversion order.

We will require the following information:

  • A plan indicating the proposed existing and alternative routes.
  • Name, address and telephone number of the applicant for the diversion order.
  • Name and address of all the owners, lessee and/or occupier of any land crossed by the existing public rights of way and the proposed alternative route.
  • The reasons as to why the proposal is considered to be in the interests of the owner/occupier of land crossed by the existing public right of way.
  • A description of any works that are proposed to provide the alternative route to a satisfactory standard.
  • Any information that you can supply as to how regularly the footpath is used and the reason for the use of the path (i.e. where people would be walking to and from).
  • Confirmation that the applicant will bear the costs of the proposal (this includes statutory advertising, works required on the alternative route and an administrative charge).
  • Confirmation that the applicant will defray any compensation that may become payable as a consequence of this diversion order, in accordance with Section 28 of the Highways Act 1980.

This information will form the basis of the application for a diversion order and must be in writing.

Tel: 01772 533722

Public Rights of Way,
Lancashire County Council,
County Hall,

More guidance available from the Institute of Public Rights of Way Management at