Rights of Way and Access - OS 25K map symbols

Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright May 2010, David Hawgood; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.
Images also under a similar Creative Commons Licence.


This is one of a series of articles which give photographs of features on the ground which have standard symbols on Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 maps, and also show the symbol. See OS 25K map symbolsExternal link for introduction to the series, and links to other articles in it. Ordnance Survey have told us that although the symbols are copyright they allow them to be copied without charge or specific licence .

Click on a photo thumbnail to see a page with a larger photo, and other photo details. The photo page also has a section of the 1:50,000 Ordnance Survey map; click on that map to see an Ordnance Survey Get-a-map section of 1:25,000 scale map. The last column has a direct link to that section of Get-a-map.

Rights of way and other public access route symbols on 25K maps have different colours from those used on 50 K maps, see Rights of way and access symbols on 50K mapsExternal link for our examples of the latter. The 25K map for England and Wales has symbols for public access land. For Scotland there are symbols for other public access land.

Public Rights of Way

DescriptionSymbolPhotoMap link and notes
Footpath OS 25K symbol - public footpath SP9712 : Baby strollers on Ashridge footpath by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link The footpath runs North-south. A bridleway crosses it running near East-west
Bridleway OS 25K symbol - public bridleway SP9710 : Bridleway on Northchurch Common by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link
Byway open to all traffic OS 25K symbol - Byway open to all traffic SP9809 : Public Byway sign by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link
Restricted byway OS 25K symbol - Restricted Byway SU1332 : Restricted byway, Old Sarum by Miss SteelMap linkExternal link


Other Public Access

DescriptionSymbolPhotoMap link and notes
Other route with public access OS 25K symbol -  SS9146 : ORPA through Selworthy Farm by Phil ChampionMap linkExternal link
National Trail/Long Distance Route OS 25K symbol -   OS 25K symbol -  SD8868 : Winter on the Pennine Way by Chris HeatonThe name of a national trail (Pennine Way here) can have a green tint background Map linkExternal link
National Trail (England and Wales) OS 25K symbol - acorn NT8716 : On the Pennine Way towards King's Seat by Walter BaxterA national trail can have an acorn symbol beside it Map linkExternal link
National Trail (Scotland) OS 25K symbol - thistle NN1168 : Stile on the West Highland Way by Iain ThompsonA national trail can have a thistle symbol beside it Map linkExternal link
Recreational Route OS 25K symbol -  SD6690 : Dales Way, Dentdale by Frank GloverThe words "Dales Way" do not have a green tint background - compare with Pennine way above Map linkExternal link
Permissive footpath OS 25K symbol -  SX7174 : Permissive path to Cockingford by Guy WarehamMap linkExternal link
Permissive bridleway OS 25K symbol -  SE1739 : Permitted Bridleway 'Gate' at Ainsbury Avenue by Richard KayMap linkExternal link
Traffic-free cycle route OS 25K symbol -  NZ4121 : Off-road cycle route from Harrowgate Lane by Philip BarkerMap linkExternal link
National cycle network route number - traffic-free OS 25K symbol -  SO1192 : Riverside walk by Penny MayesMap linkExternal link
National cycle network route number - on road OS 25K symbol -  SU1383 : railway bridge on National cycle route 45 by David CollinsMap linkExternal link
Boundary of specified access area OS 25K symbol - Boundary of specified access area NR7118 : Forestry Commission plantation on Beinn Ghuilean by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link The purple line symbol as used around Forestry Commission and similar access land is not shown separately on the key, but is shown around the appropriate symbols as below.
National Trust for Scotland always open OS 25K symbol -  NT9168 : Wind-blown trees above Mire Loch by Oliver DixonMap linkExternal link; on this and next four items, there is a symbol to show the organisation, and a purple boundary line to show the extent of the access area.
National Trust for Scotland limited opening OS 25K symbol -  NS5656 : Greenbank House, Clarkston by Elliott SimpsonMap linkExternal link
Forestry Commission Land OS 25K symbol -  NO4825 : Powie Burn by James AllanMap linkExternal link
Forestry Commission Land - boundary OS 25K symbol -  NO4924 : Forestry Commission carpark, Tentsmuir. by Richard WebbMap linkExternal link
Woodland Trust Land OS 25K symbol -  NT0668 : Woodland, South Village by Richard WebbMap linkExternal link
Danger Area OS 25K symbol -  SN8836 : Near Bryn y Garn by Graham HornMap linkExternal link; this link shows words on the map, the next shows boundary on the map.
Danger Area boundary OS 25K symbol -  SU9354 : Boundary of the Danger Area by Paul E SmithMap linkExternal link


Access Land

DescriptionSymbolPhotoMap link and notes
Access land boundary and tint OS 25K symbol - access land boundary and tintSU7997 : Access land on Bledlow Ridge by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link
Access land in woodland area - conifers  OS 25K symbol - Conifer access land TQ7233 : Conifer trees in National Pinetum by David AnstissMap linkExternal link; the symbols column has a map extract showing an area of conifer woodland with access. Symbols for conifer, deciduous, coppice or a mixture can be shown within an access land boundary.
Access land in woodland area - deciduous OS 25K symbol - access land in woodland areaSP9709 : Woodland "The Beeches", Berkhamsted by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link; the symbols column has the tint as shown in the key to the map.
Access land in woodland area - coppice OS 25K symbol - access land in woodland area SP9710 : Coppiced access woodland on Northchurch Common by David HawgoodMap linkExternal link; the symbols column has a map example showing all three types of woodland symbol in a small area of access within an area of non-access woodland.
Ordinary woodland areas (to compare tint with above) OS 25K symbol - woodland areasSP9712 : Thunderdell Wood by David HawgoodOrdinary woodland; the three sets of symbols are conifers at the top, then deciduous, then coppice. The example has deciduous trees with no access on the left, with access on the right Link to MapExternal link
Access information point OS 25K symbol - Access information pointNZ0043 : Parkhead by Peter McDermottMap linkExternal link
Managed Access land in MOD area OS 25K symbol - Managed Access land in MOD areaSK0262 : MOD training ground by John PoyserLink to MapExternal link; the map also has the web address www. access.mod.uk www.access.mod.ukExternal link. Choosing "Midlands" from this gives as one choice Leek and Upper HulmeExternal link which gives information about the managed access in this area.


Map symbol images are Crown Copyright
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