Skip Navigation

Rights of Way Improvement Plan

Highway authorities have a duty to prepare and publish Rights of Way Improvement Plans (ROWIPs).

Dorset Rights of Way Improvement Plan - Planning for the Future

"Providing opportunities for everyone to enjoy using Dorset's Public Rights of Way and Countryside sites for both travel and play - helping to improve the environment and overall quality of life for people now and for generations to come."

Dorset RoWIP vision

The Dorset Rights of Way Improvement Plan 2011-2021. (pdf, 9Mb) (opens in a new window) identifies the key issues that need to be addressed to develop and improve the access network to enable more people to use and enjoy Dorset's public paths and open space for both leisure and travel.

This plan is the result of extensive research including working and consulting with local Dorset people, land managers and numerous organisations.

This plan does not override the authority's current statutory duty to maintain Rights of Way. However Rights of Way Improvement Plans are the prime means for the Local Highway Authority to identify and prioritise actions to bring outdoor access up-to-date so that it addresses public needs today regarding recreation, sport, transport, health, economy, land-management, tourism and planning so that it can fully benefit our way of life today.


Opportunities to walk, ride or cycle in the natural environment to relax and keep fit benefiting our overall physical health and sense of wellbeing.


Opportunities for people to travel safely off road on foot, horse or bike to get to shops, school, work and other local facilities.


Opportunities for local people and visitors to enjoy Dorset - its local attractions, countryside, vibrant coastal and market towns and villages - helping to sustain local businesses.


Opportunities to enhance landscapes through path networks of good design; helping to manage how and where people travel protecting sensitive landscapes and helping to reduce vehicular use, congestion, air and noise pollution.

Research for the Dorset RoWIP has established that by improving management and maintenance, providing better information, developing a network of paths that are safe and attractive to use and involving people in achieving this - that these subtle, often overlooked group of public paths and open space can achieve so much more and improve our quality of life today and those of future generations


If you would like to discuss potential improvement projects please contact Tara Hansford Access Projects Development Officer.

The Dorset RoWIP is the authority's long-term management strategy for the PRoW and countryside sites access network.

Dorset County Council as a Highway Authority is required under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 to prepare and publish Rights of Way Improvement Plans (RoWIP).

Powered by GOSS iCM