Private streets

A private street is one which is not maintained by the council and therefore we are not under obligation to carry out repairs to it, even though it may be a named street and serve a number of properties. Some new housing estates have private streets and the responsibility for their maintenance would lie with the developer.

Most terraced properties serviced by back and side passageways would be classed as private streets. In many instances these are in poor condition and are not maintained by us.

The council can adopt a private street

If a private street has been in use as a highway for many years, we may be able to adopt it and take over responsibility for its maintenance in the future - provided it is up to standard. Until it has been adopted the maintenance of private streets (including snow clearance) is the responsibility of the residents.

Many private streets have no kerbs, footways, surface water sewers, gullies or lighting, and surfaces in bad conditions, these problems would need to be resolved before we would agree to adopt the street.

A Section 38 agreement is a section of the Highways Act 1980 that can be used when a developer proposes to construct a new estate road for residential, industrial or general purpose traffic that may be offered to the Highway Authority for adoption as a public highway.

Highway search

A public road owned by the Council is called an 'adopted' road. A privately-owned road is an 'unadopted' road'.

To check if your road is adopted you can:

  1. View the online street register
  2. View the current Section 38 agreements and street list

We can give you details about a road and the surrounding land, such as:

  • whether a road or alleyway is private or council-owned
  • a plan showing the status of the road
  • public rights of way 
  • proposed road improvements or widening scheme
  • proposed traffic regulation orders
  • proposed and existing road closures

If you have a street enquiry or require more information, please complete the form below (this service will come with a charge).

  • Name

You can make a payment online for a street enquiry.

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