What an adopted street is

An adopted street is a street that is maintained at public expense. Street adoption is a term used to describe the council taking responsibility for the maintenance and repair of a 'private street'.

What a private street is

A 'private street' is a street that is not maintained at public expense. This means that as a highway authority, we are under no obligation to carry out repairs or cleansing to the street, even though it could be a public right of way where highway and traffic law can be applied.

How a street becomes adopted

New streets that have been constructed in line with our guidelines are normally adopted by an agreement between the developer and the council, under Section 38 of the Highway Act 1980.

document Apply for a Section 38 agreement (92 KB)

Send your completed web form to tam@bristol.gov.uk

Existing streets will not normally be adopted unless they are brought up to current standards by the owners of the street.

It may for example:

  • be unpaved
  • be without kerbs, footways, surface water sewers, gullies and lighting or any of these features
  • have a surface that is in bad condition

Under the provisions of Sections 205 to 228 of the Highways Act 1980 we may decide to raise the standard of a private street by providing:

  • any or all of the missing features or
  • by improving the standard of any existing features at the expense of the owner

This procedure allows us to adopt the street as a highway maintainable at public expense, when the necessary works are completed.

For further information on Section 38 agreements and design guidance email transportdm@bristol.gov.uk. We don't charge for basic enquiries.

Section 36(6) Highways Act 1980: list of adopted streets maintainable at the public expense

The documents below show the streets that we are responsible for, including A, B and C classified streets, unclassified streets and segregated footpaths. 

The lists of adopted and classified streets are:

  • set out to the best of our knowledge: the information provided is accurate as of 3 April 2024
  • from multiple data sources
  • provided to assist residents and for information purposes

The map of adopted streets also provides a visual representation of this data.

Terms and conditions

The lists are not intended to be definitive and are subject to change when specific locations are reviewed, or additional evidence is presented. Use of the information from the lists is solely at the risk of the user.

The recorded width of the publicly maintainable highway

The lists do not have detailed information on the width of the highway across the whole of the network.

The extent of adoption (carriageway, footway and verge) is not in the lists and the map above.

If you need detailed information on the width of the highway and its position in relation to a property boundary for conveyance purposes you can get copies of planning documents and history

By using it you agree to be bound by the terms and conditions outlined above.


You will need to pay for a local land charges search result. Get copies of planning documents and history

We also charge a rate of £50 per hour for official enquiries or letters that need more detailed information relating to highway status.

We don't make a profit on charges, in line with other local authorities. 

We'll let you know if you need to pay any fees, and how you can pay them.

Your consent for us to continue holding your contact details

The contact details you provide for street adoption queries or applications will be used by us for correspondence so we can administer your case.

By providing us with your contact details you consent to your information being used for this purpose.

You can also check who is responsible for maintaining a street at national level at FindMyStreet, provided by Geoplace.

Contact information

Highway Asset Management (100TS)

Bristol City Council
PO Box 3399
Bristol BS1 9NE

Email: customer.services@bristol.gov.uk
Tel: 0117 922 2100