Skip to main content
Helping you to find your way Waymarker indicating public footpaths

B1 – Public rights of way

Benefit a wide variety of users by raising the standard of all public rights of way so that 90% are ‘easy to use’ by 2023.  


How the local partners are doing on this objective

Progress: 91% of routes were assessed as being easy to use in 2022. Engineering works carried out to 1.5km of public rights of way, including 600m of new footpath at Tebay and 300m of access improvements at Hartlakes, Muker and repairs to 250m of previously engineered routes, including significant re-placement of the boardwalk at Humphrey Bottom on the 3 Peaks route.

Press Releases & related articles:

12 December 2023 – ‘Last link’ restored in flood hit northern dales

17 March 2023 – Earl opens footpath in Tebay

23 December 2022 – Thanks for reclaimed stone donation

29 June 2021 – Rights of way network maintained

4 June 2021 – Rights of way agreement signed with Lancashire CC

2 April 2021 – New path near Ingleborough summit

20 July 2020 – Popular ‘Three Peaks’ fellside path to close for repair.


Rationale: The National Park has one of the best rights of way networks in the country.  These routes are fundamental to people’s enjoyment of the Park’s special qualities – around 80% of people go on a short or long walk while they are here. The condition of rights of way in the new area of the National Park is significantly lower (67% easy to use) than the rest (89%).  Bringing these paths up to the same standard as the rest of the National Park over the next five years will be challenging but achievable.

Lead partner: Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority

Supporting partnersNorth Yorkshire Council; Westmorland & Furness Council; Lancashire County Council.

Further information: YDNPA – Footpath repairs and maintenance, PRoW Annual report 2020/21

Cost over 5 years:  £4,100,000

Funding shortfall:   Each year a significant amount of external funding is raised to help meet the costs of the maintenance and enhancement of public rights of way in the National Park.  237k in 2015/16, 244k in 2016/17, 440k in 2017/18 

Related objectives: B2; B3; B8; B9; B10; E2; E3

Ecosystem services: Recreation; A sense of place and inspiration; A sense of history.

Trade-offs: Works to rights of way can potentially have impacts on landscape character (A3) and priority habitats (C1).  Management and mitigation of these impacts is guided by principles set out in the Special Qualities, Special Experience document.

Baseline: 82% of public RoW were easy to use in March 2018.


‘State of the Park’ indicator – YES