Natural England - Access to farms and country estates

Access to farms and country estates

Visitors should always check to see whether they have a right to walk or ride on private farmland and country estates.

As well as the public rights of way and open access land available for all to enjoy, some landowners may provide permissive access to their land for walking, cycling or horseriding. Permissive access means access is given by permission of the landowner rather than as a public right.

Some permissive access is funded through Environmental Stewardship, which is an agri-environment scheme providing funding to farmers and other land managers in England who deliver effective environmental management on their land.

The Conservation Walks Registerexternal link gives details of access to land as part of agri-environment schemes. In addition, there are leaflets describing a number of countryside walks and ridesexternal link in our Publications Catalogue.

Permissive access is also available for some land of outstanding scenic or scientific interest that is conditionally exempt from inheritance tax. HM Revenue & Customsexternal link provides a searchable directory of such property, and includes details of public rights of way and permissive access.

Educational accessexternal link is provided on some farms. This is mostly aimed at school parties, but can be for family or other groups by arrangement.

The Forestry Commissionexternal link provides information on where to go and what you can do in Forestry Commission woods.