Road, highway and pavement obstructions

It is an offence to obstruct the free passage of the highway.

Streetworks, roadworks, skips, scaffolds, hoardings, advertising boards and building materials that block the pavement and road are all considered to be causing an obstruction to pedestrians and motorists.

Examples of such obstructions to both pedestrians and motorists are listed below.

  • a skip or scaffolding is obstructing the pavement
  • no barriers around streetworks/roadworks and building work is affecting pedestrian safety
  • building materials are blocking the pavement
  • an advertising board is blocking the pavement
  • banners or bunting is causing an obstruction
  • temporary works including traffic lights
  • overhanging tree branches, hedges
  • mud/debris on the road
  • mixing concrete/mortar on the highway
  • unauthorised vendors/traders
  • encroachment of highway boundaries*
  • discharge of water onto the highway
  • blocking "Rights of Way"
  • plants and Bushes
  • illegal Signs

* Encroachments are where ownership of areas of the highway has been unlawfully assumed.

If a person without lawful authority or excuse in any way wilfully obstructs the free passage along a highway, they are guilty of an offence. In such cases the Highway Authority has legal powers to enforce their removal.

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Contact us

If you report an obstruction to a pavement or road, including overgrown hedges and trees, using My Account, you'll be able to view the progress of your report:

Report an obstruction to the pavement or road through My Account

If you don't require updates on progress you can report these issues to us anonymously without registering:

Report an obstruction to the pavement or road as a guest

What happens once I have submitted the report?

We will inspect the problem within 72 hours to assess whether the reported issue is obstructing the road or pavement.

How long it should take

We will inspect the problem within 10 working days and decide how urgent it is. If work is needed on a specific obstruction, such as a tree or hedge, we will instruct our contractor. It could take up to eight weeks to complete the work depending on the nature and urgency of the work needed.

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Page last updated:

January 19, 2023