What are Public Rights of Way?
Confused about the different types of public footpaths, bridleways and byways? We provide clear guidance to help you enjoy Anglesey.
There are just over 1081 km of public rights of way on Anglesey - 1069 km of footpaths and around 12 km of bridleways, ‘restricted byways’ and ‘byways open to all traffic’. The Council works closely with both users and landowners, to keep the network in good shape for all to enjoy.
Like a public road, a public right of way is a highway which anybody may use at any time. Rights of way are classified according to the nature of the public’s rights along them. There are four categories of public right of way:
For walkers only. You are allowed to take a pram, pushchair or wheelchair along any public footpath - but be aware that many paths, particularly in the countryside, may not be physically suitable for them.
Public footpaths are often waymarked with yellow arrows.
For walkers, horse riders and cyclists. Cyclists must give way to walkers and horse-riders.
Bridleways are often waymarked with blue arrows.
‘Restricted byways’ are available for walkers, horse riders, cyclists and horse-drawn vehicles only. This is a new category of public right of way introduced by the CROW Act 2000. All routes which, immediately prior to the commencement of the relevant section of the CROW Act in 2006, were recorded as ‘roads used as public paths (or ‘RUPPs’) were changed to ‘restricted byways’.
Restricted byways’ are sometimes waymarked with purple arrows.
‘Byways open to all traffic’ (‘BOATs’)
As the name suggests, these routes - often simply called byways - are for walkers, horse riders, cyclists and vehicles - including horse-drawn carriages, motorcycles and other motor vehicles.
BOATs are sometimes waymarked with red arrows.
Public rights and private rights
Be careful to distinguish between public rights of way and private rights of way. The Council does not hold records of private rights of access, wayleaves or easements. Different rules apply - you should seek your own legal advice on such matters.
You are likely to come across a number of other terms being used to describe routes that you want to follow. If you want to learn more follow the link below.