Rights of way
Darlington’s rights of way network covers a wide variety of landscapes: hills and valleys, rural and urban, short paths and circular walks. Some paths may be surfaced and many are tracks across countryside owned by farmers and landowners.
Public footpaths are not to be confused with highway footways, which are pavements to the side of the road.
We are responsible for 216 miles (346 kilometres) of rights of way. In the borough of Darlington, all but one of our rights of way are public footpaths and public bridleways. There is one byway open to all traffic (BOAT).
Within the borough there are a number of permissive paths, including through Skerningham Woods, and one at Newton Ketton, which offers panoramic views over to the North York Moors and Yorkshire Dales.
The Teesdale way [external link], a long distance footpath, passes through the southern part of the borough of Darlington.
Many of our rights of way are ancient. Some of Darlington’s rights of way date back almost a thousand years. Over such a long time, some of these ancient paths and tracks have been widened, surfaced and become lanes and roads.
One example is the age-old salters’ route, which is still a rustic lane in one part of the borough and becomes a main road as it nears the town centre.
Self guided walks
Tees Valley Local Access Forum
The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 required that all highway authorities in England and Wales set up Local Access Forums to advise both local authorities and the Countryside Agency (now called Natural England) on access issues and the rights of way improvement plan.
River Tees Rediscovered - Landscape Partnership
Darlington Borough Council is a partner in the River Tees Discovered project. Our vision is to reconnect the people of the Tees with their river by telling the story of the River Tees as a natural feature that has moulded the physical and cultural development of the landscape and communities through which it runs.
For more information visit the Facebook page [external link]
- Register of definitive map modification order (DMMO)
- Register of Deposits for section 31 (6) of Highways Act 1990
- Ordnance Survey website [external link]
- DEFRA website [external link]
- IPROW website [external link]
- Forestry Commission website [external link]