Your application will be added to the register and investigated in accordance with the Statement of Priorities. We will tell you when investigation is likely to begin and will contact you again when it does.
Processing a Modification Application involves assessing the evidence provided by the applicant as well as evidence from other documentary sources. This results in a report that goes to our Regulation Committee with a recommendation to either make an order or not (refusal of application).
If an order is made, it may receive objections. This may result in a Government Inspector being asked to consider the evidence and possibly a public inquiry to reach a decision.
If no objections are received, then the order is confirmed and the public right of way is amended accordingly on the Definitive Map and Statement.
From the start of the investigation process to coming to a decision should take about 16 weeks. Making the order, advertising and dealing with any possible objections can significantly lengthen the process, especially where appeals are made against decisions.
The policy for processing applications to modify the Definitive Map is known as the Statement of Priorities. This sets out how applications are selected for investigation and is in Downloads.
Applications are prioritised in accordance with the Statement of Priorities. Except in a few limited circumstances, new applications will be prioritised in the order we receive them. This means that it could be a number of years’ wait before your application is investigated. If you are not sure whether you should make an application, please contact us for advice.
If you are a landowner and are concerned about new rights of way being created, you can submit a deposit (a map together with a statement) and plan under section 31(6) of the Highways Act 1980. From the date of submission, the land is then protected from any further rights being claimed. However, claims based on historical evidence, or evidence of use before the date of submission may still be successful. Statements must be renewed every ten years to remain in effect. You can find guidance notes and examples of a statement and statutory declaration in Downloads.
Contact the team
Contact: Rights of Way Definitive Map Team
Address: Somerset Council, County Hall, Taunton, Somerset, TA1 4DY
Phone: 01823 356944
Fax: 01823 356114
Opening hours: Monday to Thursday 8.30am to 5pm, Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm, Saturday and Sunday closed.
Privacy Notice for Definitive Map and Modification investigations and orders
Pre Application Information – A Guide to modifying the Definitive Map and Statement
The Definitive Map and Statement of Rights of Way Statement of Priorities
Guidance notes for making a s31 and Commons deposition
Application form for s31 and Commons Deposit
Landowners DMMO Guidance – for landowners affected by rights of way modification applications