report that footpath problem

Rights of way rage to virtuous glow in a few easy steps

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The footpath network we enjoy today is kept open largely because walkers report problems and make the effort to check that something is done. Sometimes your walk will be plagued with a range of minor annoyances like rickety stiles or overhanging branches, occasionally it can be brought to a grinding halt "Who put that quarry there ?". If you are leading a walk, you'll be doing your bit if you report at least the one most annoying problem you encounter.

What is a footpath problem ?

Anything that interferes with your enjoyment of the right of way, such as:

There is more information on footpaths and rights of access on the main Ramblers website.

How do you report a problem ?

Collect the information

This may be easier on the recce than the actual walk when you might not want to interrupt the flow. You will need to note:

Tell the highway authority

The highway authority for Oxfordshire is Oxfordshire County Council:

F.A.O. Public Rights of Way Officer
Countryside Service
Oxfordshire County Council
Signal Court
Old Station Way
Oxford OX29 4TL
Tel: 01865 810226 (Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm. There is a voicemail service outside these hours and on public holidays.)
Fax: 0845 6069614

They have an online reporting form you can use. Try to print out a copy of the form to keep so the problem can be followed up. See the Oxfordshire County Council Countryside Service website for more information about the work they do.

If your walk is outside Oxfordshire, you can find the highway authority responsible in the list of local authorities in 'Walk Britain' or from the Ramblers website.

Copy the information to the Ramblers main office

The main Ramblers website also has an online report form for path problems; if you inform the Ramblers as well as the local council then the footpaths officer from the relevant Ramblers group will be made aware, and be able to keep an eye on the issue.

What happens next?

If you have the chance, check after a few weeks to see if the problem has been resolved. If it has not been resolved after, say, three months, write again to the highway authority.