Rights of Way in West Dunbartonshire

TrackA public right of way is a road or path (a route) which can be used by any member of the public as a matter of right.

In order to become a right of way under the common law, a route must:

  • run from one public place to another public place

  • follow a more or less defined route

  • have been used openly and peaceably by members of the public,

  • have been so used without substantial and effective interruption, for a period of 20 years or more and

  • have been used without the express or implied permission of the landowner. For example the Forestry Commission allow public access to their woodlands and this prevents the making of a right of way.

West Dunbartonshire Council has a duty to assert and keep free from encroachment any public right of way within its area. The Council also has the power to repair and maintain any public right of way, however; this does not relieve any other authority or person of their liability.

All public rights of way will continue to exist and are unaffected by the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.

Scottish Rights of Way & Access Society: