Public Rights Over Land Conference 2024

March 13, 2024, 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Join us for our upcoming Public Rights Over Land Conference, to be held virtually on Wednesday 13 March 2024, from 2 PM – 5 PM. The conference deals with all matters connected to public rights of way, common land and village greens. There will be case law updates, bringing delegates up to date with developments in the area.

There are limited spaces available for in-person attendance, see more below.*


14:00 – Introduction (George Laurence KC, chair)

14:10-14:35 – Common Myths about Common Land (Simon Adamyk)

  • Debunking some common myths about common land
  • Blackbushe Airport case update:
    • Final determination of the de-registration application (following remission)
    • New section 16 exchange land application

14:35-15:00 – Short-circuiting the definitive map modification process – can it be done? (Ross Crail)

  • Effect of conclusive evidence provisions
  • When will the courts intervene?
  • Is there life left in Nettlecombe?

15:00-15:20 – BREAK

15:20-15:45 – Village green and commons case update (Paul Wilmshurst)

  • Cotham School v Bristol City Council [2024] EWHC 154 (Ch)
  • Rushmer and others v Central Bedfordshire Council [2023] P.T.S.R. 1820

15:45-16:10 – Old roads and highways, their stopping up and discontinuance, presumptions and what’s left (Guy Adams)

  • In this session, Guy will take a brief look at old roads, what roads were before they had any statutory definition and their making and repair at common law if they were also common highways. He will also provide a more in depth consideration of the relevant presumptions if direct evidence of their lawful stopping up and discontinuance cannot be found; and finally what’s left and who it belongs to if they have been stopped up and discontinued: the physical thing, the land and private rights.

16:10-16:35 – Dewhurst v Hodge after Regency Villas (Raj Sahonte)

  • In this session, Raj will explore the complexities surrounding the registration of a prescriptive right of way. Looking particularly though not exclusively at property use, challenging users, and the significance of the dominant property.

16:35-17:00 – Q&A & close

17:00 – Post conference drinks*

*There are limited spaces available to accommodate in-person attendance which will take place at the Ashworth Centre, Lincolns Inn, London WC2A 3TL. Spaces are now full, but we are operating a waitlist. Please register here to request in-person attendance or contact


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