Local Access Forums (England & Wales)

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Cyclists in the countryside
Developing a cycle network in the countryside should be on the agenda for all LAFs
Headline Messages: 
  • Effective Local Access Forums (LAFs) have the potential to maximise the benefits of the Rights of Way (RoW) network for both recreational and day-to-day travel.
  • With cyclists’ interests represented on them, LAFs can also help make sure that the network is developed, maintained and promoted with cycling in mind. Easily accessible motor-traffic free routes for cycling in the countryside not only provide local people and visitors with an enjoyable leisure activity, but also encourage them to take advantage of the health benefits it offers.
Key facts: 
  • Local Highway Authorities and National Parks have to set up Local Access Forums by law under the Countryside & Rights of Way (CRoW) Act 2000. Members are not allowed to represent an organisation, but should be able to represent their interests knowledgeably.
  • In 2013/14, there were 86 active LAFs in England, with almost a thousand members between them. 29 LAFs were originally set up in Wales.
  • In 2013/14, English LAFs were involved in at least 83 cycle projects, 69 ‘multi-user routes’ and 41 ‘Paths for Communities’ schemes.
CTC View (formal statement of CTC's policy): 
  • Cycling interests should be represented on all LAFs. 
  • Local authorities should be receptive and responsive to LAF recommendations on:
    •  amendments to the definitive map and on processing them in a timely fashion, to the benefit of off-road cyclists 
    •  the promotion and signing of the RoW network and other opportunities for off-road cycling 
    •  the proper maintenance of byways, bridleways and un-surfaced unclassified roads o the removal of obstructions. 
  • LAFs should promote off-road cycling as a healthy and enjoyable activity, particularly to families and young people. 
  •  LAFs should adopt, implement and promote CTC’s key Rights of Way Improvement Plan (RoWIP) priorities
Download full campaigns briefing: 
Publication Date: 
January 2015
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