Private road maintenance

Find out about the maintenance of private roads and streets.

Private roads

Private roads are not adopted or maintained by us; the County Council, as highway authority, is under no obligation to carry out repairs, maintenance or street cleansing. That responsibility lies with the road owners or residents.

The public also have no right of access to private roads and they are usually gated.

Private streets

Private streets are different as they are not gated and the public have right of access. We are responsible for ensuring that private streets are accessible to the public, but not for their maintenance. That responsibility lies with the road owners or residents.

Road adoption

A public, or adopted road, is a road maintained by us. New roads can be adopted via a Section 38 agreement in partnership with a developer. For an existing road to be adopted by us it will have to be brought up to standard, with the costs being met by the owners or residents.

Report a problem

It is the primary responsibility of the street owners to keep the road safe and free of obstructions. If access to the street is difficult or impossible (blocked or fenced) contact us so we can investigate.

If a fundamental danger exists to those using the street, such as a missing manhole cover, fallen tree or deep hole, we may consider action. Costs will normally be apportioned to, and recovered from, the property owner(s) whose frontage borders on the defect or obstruction.

An unadopted road covered in potholes is not a reason for us to intervene. The road can clearly be identified as badly maintained and accessed carefully at slow speed. However, an unexpected, deep hole in an otherwise good surface may constitute a danger as it may not be reasonably anticipated by a road user.

Similarly, if a tree appears to be in a dangerous condition, or has fallen, it is the responsibility of the street owner(s) to remove it and clear the debris. If there is a need for us to intervene we will take necessary action and recover the costs.

Last updated:
20 October 2023
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