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Apply for a dropped kerb

A dropped kerb is used to give access to vehicles from a road, across the pavement and onto a driveway or parking area.

Please note the current processing time for enquiries is approximately 12 weeks, and you may not hear from us during this period.

You should not drive over the grass verge or pavement onto your property if you don't have a crossing.

A dropped kerb is a common name for a vehicular crossing also referred to as a footway crossing. It is an area of lowered pavement and kerbstones which is used to give access to vehicles from a road, across the pavement, into a driveway or parking area.

If you intend to drive a vehicle over the pavement into your driveway off a highway (road), then you will need a dropped kerb. If you do not have a dropped kerb, you must not drive over the pavement (footway). If you do so, you are breaking the law* and enforcement action could be taken to prevent this. Furthermore:

  • You may become liable for a collision with a pedestrian.
  • You may become liable for damage to the pavement.
  • You may face considerable costs as a result of damage to any utility apparatus under the pavement.

*It is an offence, under the Section 184 of the Highway Act 1980, to cross a kerb, verge or pavement with a mechanically propelled vehicle, except at a crossing point that has been approved by Leicester City Council as the Highway Authority for that purpose.

The dropped kerb cannot be used until the hardstanding (driveway) is completed and meets the following parameters:

  • You should ensure that a dropped kerb will be approved before you carry out your hardstanding construction, as it may be refused by the Council if it does not meet the criteria.
  • The size of the hardstanding should normally be at least 4.5 metres long and 2.4 metres wide for a 3m dropped kerb, or to suit the width of your dropped kerb. It should set out at 90° to the carriageway. Hardstandings that are 4 to 4.5 metres long will be assessed separately, but your application may be refused.
  • Loose material may be used for the hardstanding with a hard strip of tarmac, concrete or block pavers at least 500mm wide at the property boundary with the footway and we also encourage use of a porous, bound material.

Wherever possible, you should only use permeable materials to construct your hard standing, to ensure that rainwater is contained within your property boundary. Where non- permeable surfacing such as tarmac or blocks are to be used, a drainage system will need to be installed to manage rainwater within the property boundary. You will need planning permission to surface your parking area with a non-permeable material such as traditional tarmac or blocks. For more advice please see guidance on permeable surfacing of front gardens.

You must get in touch with our planning team before any works commence. There are several scenarios whereby planning permission may be required as follows: 

  • Access is onto the classified road network (marked as A, B, C).
  • Where no buildings are present on the land, for example when it is a field.
  • Conservation areas.
  • The property is listed (may not be required but the applicant shall check it).
  • Your private hardstanding is more than 5sqm² and impermeable.

If your site needs planning approval, you must enclose a copy of the valid planning consent and approved site plans with your application.

If your site needs planning permission, you must enclose a copy of the valid planning consent and approved site plans with your application

To find out if your property is located on a classified road, check our list of streets page.

To check if your property is based in a conservation area, or near a listed building, see our mapping system. To search for a conservation area, please enter your property location on the map. Any conservation area will be represented by green dots.

For all applications, the following must be submitted:

  • a photograph of the site marked to show the location of the proposed crossing (please see photograph 1 & photograph 2) [WHICH IMAGES?]
  • a sufficiently detailed drawing with measurements (please see drawing 1 & drawing 2). [WHICH IMAGES?]
  • agreement from third party landowners

If your site requires a planning permission (which will be checked via the application process), you will need to submit a copy of a valid planning consent.

Please note: You need to ensure that the proposal for a vehicle crossing to access your property meets our current guidelines. It is important that you provide sufficient detailed drawings and photos (see examples on the link below). If you do not provide sufficient information, we will request the missing information twice and failure to submit will mean the application will be refused. Therefore, if you are unable to provide sufficient detailed drawings and photos, you may need to seek professional help.

  • View example drawings and photos (PDF) [ADD LINK]

  1. There is an initial, non-refundable application fee of £50 to be paid when applying.
  2. If your application is approved, then a further, non-refundable payment of £100 (permit to construct fee) will be required. You will be requested to make this payment when you submit the stage 2, permit to construct application form.

Are there any additional costs?

The immediate vicinity around your property might contain utility apparatus or cables, bus shelters, telephone kiosks, post boxes, street lighting, street name plates, direction signs, traffic signals bollards, highway drains and trees etc. If any of these obstructions need to be moved, then you will have to pay for its relocation.

Can I receive financial assistance?

The Highway Authority does not offer any financial assistance to subsidise a dropped kerb.

You will need to apply by submitting an initial application form, using the link below:

Approved applications

If your application for a dropped kerb is approved in writing, you will be sent a link to stage 2 of the application, where you will need to submit additional information.

Leicester City Council no longer construct dropped kerbs, therefore, you will need to find a suitable contractor that meets the criteria as set out in stage 2, permit to construct application form. 

Once the permit to construct (stage 2) and your contractor is approved, you will have six months to complete the work. Within this time, you must obtain a permit number from the permit scheme for road works. If not completed, in this time, the approval will expire and a new application will have to be made and relevant fees paid.

The finished construction will be inspected by us and any defect found will need to be corrected by the permit holder. You may be charged by us for any remedial works to ensure the safety of pedestrians using the footway. The permit holder will also be responsible for the maintenance of the crossing for a period of 24 months from the full completion until the final sign off.


Frequently asked questions

Your application for a dropped kerb can be refused and reason are individual to that location. The factors below may lead to the refusal of a proposed dropped kerb:

  • Your property is on a bend or at a road junction.
  • A tree is in the proposed crossing.
  • Street furniture or a street lamp may obstruct access.
  • Your property is close to traffic signals or a pedestrian crossing.
  • There is a steep slope between your property and the road.
  • There is insufficient area to construct a hardstanding.
  • There is insufficient visibility for pedestrians or drivers when entering and leaving the property.
  • Your crossing would compromise part or all of an existing traffic calming feature.
  • Your crossing would access a classified road or would be within 15 metres of a junction with a principal or classified road.
  • Your crossing is within 10m of a junction.
  • Your crossing might create a path for rainwater to run-off onto the applicant’s and/or neighbours’ property, triggering flooding.
  • Your crossing would exceed the maximum size of a dropped kerb allowed: 6 metres, including existing dropped kerb per property.
  • Where a proposed crossing is requested on bay parking area and more than one parking space will be lost.

Most applications are successful. However, if your proposed crossing puts other road users at risk or seriously interferes with the free flow of traffic on a busy road, it may be turned down. Notwithstanding the guidelines above, in certain circumstances it will be necessary for the Council, as Highway Authority, to refuse to allow the construction of a footway crossing to your premises. In these circumstances you will be informed in writing of the reason why permission has been refused.

Reasons for refusal may include:

  • Insufficient or no detailed drawing and photos provided when submitting your application.
  • Land ownership objections
  • Local parking implications (laybys and double accesses)
  • Safety implications such as poor sight lines at the proposed access point, the proposed access is near a road hump, road safety feature etc.
  • Insufficient hardstanding area

If your application is refused, you will receive a letter/email stating the reasons why and that you have a right to appeal. Your appeal would have to be made in writing to the City Highways Director, 90 Leycroft Road, Leicester LE4 1BZ, or via email to highwaysmaint.design@leicester.gov.uk (this email is only for appeals, no other emails will be responded to). Please ensure that the subject line has 'APPEAL' and the drop crossing number beginning with 'DK'.

An appeal will not be considered due to:

  • parking conditions in your area or
  • where you feel that an access that has already been built to a property in your road or
  • others do not comply with the current criteria for approval and should not have been approved. The presence of other historic substandard accesses cannot be accepted as a reason to approve your application.

The policy of the Highway Authority in relation to minimum depths has changed over time. This may mean that properties in your road have a vehicle access crossing that does not comply with the criteria set out in this document and appears in all respects to be very similar to your own proposals. Nevertheless, you will need to comply with the standards set out here and the fact that someone else may have a shorter parking space will not be considered when assessing your proposals.

The system of roads classification is intended to direct motorists towards the most suitable routes for reaching their destination. It does this by identifying roads that are best suited for traffic. All UK roads (excluding motorways) fall into the four categories: A, B, classified unnumbered (also known as C roads) and unclassified.

To find out if your property is located on a classified road, check the list of streets.

If the proposed dropped kerb is near to a tree or in the way, then you must provide written confirmation from the Trees & Woodlands Team that either this tree needs removing or it will not be impacted on during the construction of the crossing and can be maintained. You will be responsible for any works/cost deemed necessary. You can contact them by emailing treesandwoodlands@leicester.gov.uk.

Once you have received a written confirmation from the Trees & Woodlands Team, please attach a copy before submitting the online application form.

If the lamp column is in the way of your proposed dropped kerb, then you must provide written confirmation from the Public Lighting Team whether the lighting column is affected. You will be responsible for any works/cost deemed necessary. You can contact them by emailing lighting.client@leicester.gov.uk or contact customer service on 0116 454 1000 and request to get in touch with an officer from the Street Lighting Team.

Once you have received a written confirmation from the Public Lighting Team, please attach a copy before submitting the online application form.

Before instructing works with either Trees and Woodlands or the Public Lighting Team, please ensure that your crossing is approved first.

Anyone who wants to work on the public highway within Leicester City Council boundary is now legally required to obtain a permit prior to commencing work. The permit scheme gives us more control over works and helps us to minimise the disruption caused to road users.

The permit scheme does not include activities such as private works (Under Section 50 NRSWA), scaffolding, hoarding or skips, which will continue under the existing arrangements. We have the power to grant or refuse a permit, or to request the addition of any necessary conditions.

Find out more about permit scheme for road works. You will not need to submit the forms on that page, we will send you the relevant form at stage 2 of the application.

The construction of a vehicle crossing remains part of the highway and does not give the resident/occupier any legal right of ownership to the land or license to control that crossing in any way. However, your new crossing does provide full acceptable rights to drive across the pavement /highway land to gain access to your (or your landlord’s) property or use of land developed and deemed suitable for off road parking.

The dropped kerb will be maintained by you (the applicant) for the period of 24 months from the full completion of all works agreed in the drawings. During the time, you will be responsible for carrying out any necessary remedial works. However, we reserve the right to carry out any corrective works and to charge all costs arising from such actions to you. After 24 months and final sign off, the dropped kerb will be inspected and maintained by us.

A domestic vehicle crossing may only be used by a private light goods or a similar vehicle which does not exceed two tonnes gross laden weight. It may not be used by a heavy goods vehicle or any form of mechanical equipment. If a delivery, such as a skip, is made into the property, and in doing so damages the crossing, any repairs to the crossing will be the responsibility of the owner/occupier.

Gates or any other obstructions across the vehicle entrance to your property or land may under no circumstances open outwards across a footpath or carriageway [Highways Act 1980 – section 53].

Any land that is a not a dedicated highway, unclassified or unadopted roads may require a legal land easement if the dropped kerb crosses that land. Land title, rights of way or ownership issues may also have to be considered. Please consult your solicitor to clarify the above.

We will not be held responsible in full or part for any land or ownership issues/contraventions before or after construction of a dropped kerb. The occupier/resident takes full responsibility for the instruction given to build a dropped kerb. Please consult your solicitor to clarify it.

We reserve the right to alter your dropped kerb in the future to accommodate dropped kerbs to neighbouring properties or any highway refurbishment we deem appropriate.

If you or a contractor is carrying out the installation you must ask for special permission to excavate and an application for an Opening Up Notice must be requested [Section 171 of the Highways Act 1980].