Highways & Public Rights of Way

Highways (Infrastructure)

We have wide practical experience of the full range of highways related infrastructure agreements associated with major commercial developments.
These include:

The importance of these agreements is very frequently overlooked by house buyers and their conveyancers with potentially disastrous consequences.

If you are a house buyer, you may be at serious financial risk if there is no agreement in place (or APC deposit/bond).

If you are a property owner and your road has not yet been adopted, we can advise on the potential options open to you.

If you are a house builder or property developer we can advise you on the terms of the Agreement (and any associated agreements) and the triggers for dedication and adoption.

If your development requires highway improvement works to be carried out, we can advise on the terms of the agreement (and performance bond) with the highways authority.

If you are a local highways authority, and a development requires highway improvement works that cross the local authority’s boundary and/or highway improvement works to connect with major roads, we can advise on any necessary Section 6 and/or Section 8 Agreement.

Frequently associated with Section 38 Agreements, we can help ensure your development’s drainage system is adopted as soon as possible.

If your development requires you to place and maintain apparatus in the highway, we can advise on the provisions of the relevant licence.

If your project requires you to construct a bridge over a highway, we can advise on the provisions of the relevant licence.

If you are a local highways authority and your improvement scheme required the compulsory acquisition of land (e.g. for a town/village bypass), we have experience of the whole process from preparing and publishing the order right through to a public inquiry.

If you are a house builder or developer considering introducing a ‘Home Zone’ into one of your schemes, we can advise you on the requirements.

If it is necessary to ‘stop-up’ an existing area of highway, we can advise and assist you with the full process, from preparation and service/publication of the required notices to advocacy at the Magistrates’ Court hearing.

We have experience of both contested and uncontested applications.

Public Rights of Way

We have wide practical experience of public rights of way (“PRoW”) issues, including:

If you wish to make a DMMO application to record a public right of way (“PRoW”) or alter the status of a recorder PRoW, we can advise you on the process, the gathering and presentation of the necessary supporting evidence and how you may deal with any failure by the local highways authority to determine the application.

If you are a landowner who has received notice of a DMMO application, we can advise you on the preparation and presentation of a formal objection and undertake advocacy at a public inquiry.

If you wish to make an application for a public path order to divert or extinguish an existing PRoW, we can advise you on the process and grounds for making such an application.

If a PRoW you use has become obstructed (whether deliberately or unintentionally), we can advise you on how you may remedy that situation.

If you are a landowner threatened with enforcement action by a local highway authority (e.g. in relation to ‘crop obstruction’ etc. on a PRoW), we can advise you on how you might seek to ‘defuse’ the situation.

Transport

We also have practical experience of contentious transportation matters and have successfully acted on behalf of haulage contractors and appeared:

We have successfully acted on behalf of haulage contractors and appeared in local public inquiries before an inspector appointed by the Traffic Commissioner regarding operator licences

 

We have successfully acted on behalf of haulage contractors and appeared in Magistrates’ Courts regarding a wide variety of criminal matters, including HGV overloads, tachograph and driver hours offences etc.

Other professional advice and assistance

Highways and PRoW matters can often be multi-faceted and sometimes require additional input from other professionals.

If a highways or public rights of way matter requires an investigation and/or the expert analysis of historical maps or records (e.g. old Ordnance Survey maps or enclosure awards), we are able to call on the services of a specialist consultant with experience of appearing as an expert witness in the Magistrates Court, High Court and Court of Appeal.

Our Fees

When advising you or carrying out any work on your behalf, we shall always respect the confidentiality of your situation and put your best interests first.

Moreover, our focus shall always be on giving practical and pragmatic advice which is ‘results orientated’ and intended to deliver a positive outcome and, ideally, a cost effective solution.

As the firm is regulated by the SRA we are, in any event, required to inform you how much the work shall cost, or how the cost shall be calculated, and to give you a clear explanation at the end of the matter (and at any time on request).

If the nature of the work allows it, we shall provide you with a fixed fee at the outset.

If, however, the range of issues and potential complications in a particular matter make a fixed fee practically possible, then:-

(a) the work shall be carried out in accordance with a strategy and/or timetable agreed with you; and

(b) the fee charged shall be on a simple ‘time spent’ basis.

In both circumstances, whether charged on a fixed fee or on a time spend basis, the fee shall reflect both the value of the matter to you and the degree of skill brought to bear in dealing with it.