Dropped kerbs and crossovers

Why do I need a vehicle crossing?

The Highways Act states that it is an offence to take a vehicle across a footway or verge without a properly constructed vehicle crossing.

This is for several reasons:

  • footways are not designed to take the weight of vehicles
  • vehicles cause damage the highway verge and footway surface
  • there may be damage to any pipes or cables buried beneath the footway.

In order to ensure that vehicle crossings are properly constructed, all domestic vehicle crossings must be built to a specification provided by the Transportation, Design and Planning Department who are part of the Council. They must approve the locations, specification and contractor before the work is carried out.

How much do vehicle crossings cost?

Each crossing is different, depending on the width of the footway and/or grass verge and other circumstances such as drainage, the position of manhole covers and access chambers, moving statutory equipment and contractor availability so costs may vary, and these should be discussed with your chosen contractor.

As a very approximate guide, given the factors above a standard vehicle crossing on a 2m wide footway with no additional works could cost from £750 to £1500

Who can construct my vehicle crossing?

Bradford Council does not provide quotations or carry out the construction of residential vehicular crossings over footways and verges.

When you apply we will provide you with a list of contractors retained by the Authority that can undertake such works. You may choose to use one of these contractors or appoint your own. If you appoint a contractor that is not on our approved list, we will need to obtain certain information from them to make sure they are properly insured and accredited to work on the Highway before we can approve your crossing construction.

How do I apply for a vehicle crossing?

Please ring 01274 431000 and give your details to our contact centre staff, requesting a vehicle crossing.

One of our highways staff will then contact you within 5 days to discuss your application.

Application charges for domestic vehicle crossings

From 15 August 2016 Bradford Council will charge a fee of £75 for processing Vehicle Crossing Applications.

This fee is split into two elements:

  • £25 non-refundable administration fee – this covers the processing of your application such as basic checks of the site to ensure that there are no apparent engineering issues or safety problems that can prevent the work being undertaken, and the registering of your site on the street works register. We will also verify your chosen contractor and make sure they comply with our standards. Where issues arise, your application will remain active while we endeavour to advise you how to resolve them
  • £50 site inspection fee – this covers the time element of our inspectors attending the site and ensuring that construction is being carried out to specification

Once payment has been received, we will aim to process your application within 14 days.

A vehicle crossing licence is valid for a 3 month period. At the end of that 3 month period if you have not appointed a contractor to carry out the work you may request an extension at no extra cost for a further 3 months.

If you have not carried out any works after 6 months, the inspection fee will be refunded to you.

Should you then choose to apply again at a later date the full £75 fee will apply.

The above costs are for the processing and subsequent inspection of a vehicle crossing. The cost of the crossing construction is separate and is payable to your chosen contractor.

Details of how to pay will be given to you by highways staff when we contact you. You can also pay online.

Pay for your vehicle crossing application now

Legal considerations

Planning permission is required for vehicle crossings if:

  • The property involved has the frontage directly on to a classified road (That is, an ‘A’, ‘B’ or ‘C’ Road) 
  • The property involved is a listed building
  • The property involved is other than a house for a single family, for example a flat, maisonette, commercial or industrial premises.
  • There is to be over five square metres of tarmac or other impermeable material as part the driveway construction within your property boundary.

Once you have received planning permission, you will still need to contact the Highways Department to gain approval for the location of the crossing, the timing of any work and the contractor you wish to use. The processing fee still applies separate to any planning fees you may have to pay.

Important information

The construction of a vehicle crossing does not give the occupier of the premises any particular rights, except to drive across the footway to gain access to his/her property with a private or light goods motor car. The crossing itself is part of the public highway. From the date that the Council accepts the completed crossing, they will assume responsibility for its maintenance at no cost to the occupier, apart from any damage caused by illegal use by heavy vehicles.

If you decide to go ahead with the construction you must remove the fence, wall or hedge within the property at the place where the crossing will be located before construction can take place.

Construction and usage conditions of a dropped kerb or crossover

The following is a list of conditions relevant to the construction and the use of a domestic vehicle crossing after it has been completed.

Permitted types of vehicles

A domestic vehicle crossing may only be used by a private light goods or similar vehicle. It may not be used by heavy goods vehicles or mechanical equipment. If a delivery, such as a skip, is made into the property, and in doing so the delivery damages the crossing, any repairs will be the responsibility of the occupier.

Size of the crossing

The width of a standard crossing is 2.44 metres at the back of the public footway. This increases to about 4.58 metres at the kerb line. Crossings up to twice that width or two separate crossings may be built where there is sufficient space to leave a continuous length of two metres of full face kerb at the kerb line. A crossing which covers the full frontage of the property may not be permitted.

Shared access

Where the occupiers of two adjoining properties share a driveway, and wish to build a double width crossing to serve the two sites, one occupier should act on behalf of both parties.

Two crossings at the same property

Where a request is made for two crossings to serve the property and the space available means that the area between them is at or close to the minimum limits, ie two metres in width, a decision will have to be made as to the shape of the crossing. Where there is an existing crossing it may mean that this also will have to be modified.

Parking within your property

Your application will not be approved unless you are able to provide a suitable parking area within your property, this must be at least 4.8 metres long, measured from the front of your house to the boundary of your property and 2.44 metres wide. There must be enough space around this area for pedestrian access.

There may be instances where the above criteria are not met. In such cases we may ask you to provide us with a drawing to show your proposals. Approval may then be given, subject to a site inspection by a Highway Inspector. The Highway Inspector's decision as to whether the application will be approved - or refused - is final.

No part of a vehicle parked within your property may project on to or over the highway. The crossing may not be used as a parking area and no part of it is exempted for the purpose of footway parking. Any gates must open into your property and not across the footway.

Hard standings

Where you are intending to use gravel or a similar loose material for your hard standing, you should consider the problem of some being carried on to the highway by the movement of the vehicle. This is especially true where the surface comes up to the boundary. Where material of this type is used, concrete or blacktop must be laid in a 500mm strip from the boundary to the start of the gravelled area. This will help to reduce any problem. If the material is carried onto the highway it will be the responsibility of the occupier to remove it.


The parking area within your property must be built so that water does not drain from it out across the footway. Suitable drainage must be provided within the boundaries of your property.

Standard finish

The standard finish for vehicle crossings is tarmac. This is because the material is easy to lay and maintain.

Flags and block paving will not be allowed.

The only variance allowed to this standard finish will be in heritage areas and streets deemed to be of special interest by the Authority.

Street furniture

Where applicants have removed more of the wall or fence running along the boundary, than is required by the size of the crossing, it should be understood that an item of street furniture, for example a lamp post, telegraph pole or traffic sign, may be erected at any time in the footway outside the area of a crossing, even though this may obstruct an area where there is no wall or similar feature.

Obstacles to construction

If the proposed position of the access is obstructed by a road sign, lamp post, or tree, etc. the location should be altered to avoid the obstacle. If this is not feasible, a decision will have to be made by the relevant section as to whether the item should be removed or relocated.

If a statutory authority is required to carry out work by relocating a fire hydrant, telegraph pole etc. any charges for such work will be the responsibility of the applicant, who will be required to produce written proof of approval by the authority to the Transportation, Design and Planning Department before a crossing can be built.

If an applicant wishes the crossing to be placed in a location other than that recommended by the Transportation, Design and Planning Department and this requires the relocation of a lamp post or similar item, which would not otherwise be necessary, he/she will be required to pay the full cost of relocation.


It is our general policy not to remove Highway Trees unless there are exceptional circumstances or they are diseased/pose a danger to the public. On rare occasions, we may agree to a tree removal providing a suitable alternative is planted as part of your works.

Certain trees may be subject to environmental constraints such as Tree Preservation Order which may prevent you from carrying out works on them.

If you need further advice on trees that may affect your vehicle crossing, or require a site visit by the Council's arboriculturalist (tree specialist) please contact the Council on 01274 431000 requesting an officer to contact you.

Alterations to your vehicle crossover

In its capacity as Highway Authority, the Council may need to alter the layout of your vehicle crossover at any time, due to modifications in the footway or verge. Every effort will be made to maintain access to your property and the occupier of premises so affected will be given adequate notice of such works.

If you wish to alter an existing crossing you must re-apply for permission to do so.


Any application for the construction of a domestic crossing may be refused or modified on the grounds of safety. The applicant must ensure that adequate sight lines are maintained to allow safe access to their property.

Statutory Undertaker's Equipment

In most cases it is likely that Statutory Undertaker's equipment (such as gas, electric, cable, telephone, water) will be present within the footway. You and your contractor will be entirely responsible for locating and identifying all such equipment and ensure that it is protected from damage during the work. It is important that you make you contractor aware of this. Damage to any, but particularly gas or electricity mains can be very dangerous. Repairs to Statutory Undertakers equipment is very costly and would be your or your contractor’s responsibility.

Gates across vehicle entrance

Gates fitted across the vehicle entrance to your property may not open outwards across the footpath or carriageway. (Highways Act 1980 - Section 153).

Pedestrian crossing points

It is illegal to drive a car on the footway and pedestrian crossing points should not be used as access points to drive vehicles on to the footway.

Illegal vehicle crossings

Illegal crossings are dangerous and can be unsightly. If you are crossing the footway or verge without a properly constructed vehicle crossing you may ultimately be prosecuted, fined and charged for any damage you have caused, or any works necessary to make the site safe and/or restore it to its original condition.

We understand that people may not be aware of their legal requirements with regard to vehicle crossing points and we will offer the ability to apply for a properly constructed crossing point before any action is taken.

Commercial vehicle crossings

The following types of crossing are classed as commercial in nature and require stronger construction to a different specification and a S.184 agreement with the Authority.

  • Temporary access into development sites.
  • Access to more than one individual property on private access roads.
  • Access to farms.
  • Crossing points to private car parking areas.
  • Access to commercial premises.

Separate fees and charges apply for commercial crossings.

For more details on commercial crossings please contact network.management@bradford.gov.uk

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