Free legislation on LexisWeb is as enacted and does not take into account any amendments
(1) Natural England and the Secretary of State must exercise the relevant functions in order to secure the following objectives.
(2) The first objective is that there is a route for the whole of the English coast which—
(a) consists of one or more long-distance routes along which the public are enabled to make recreational journeys on foot or by ferry, and
(b) (except to the extent that it is completed by ferry) passes over land which is accessible to the public.
(3) The second objective is that, in association with that route (“the English coastal route”), a margin of land along the length of the English coast is accessible to the public for the purposes of its enjoyment by them in conjunction with that route or otherwise, except to the extent that the margin of land is relevant excepted land.
(4) The duty imposed on Natural England and the Secretary of State by subsection (1)—
(a) is referred to in this Part as the coastal access duty, and
(b) is to be discharged by them in such stages and within such period as appear to them to be appropriate.
(5) For the purposes of this section, land is accessible to the public if it is—
(a) land which is available to the public for the purposes of open-air recreation, by virtue of provision made under section 3A of the CROW Act and subject to any exclusions or restrictions imposed by or under Part 1 of that Act (access to the countryside),
(b) land in England which, for the purposes of section 1(1) of that Act, is treated by section 15(1) of that Act as being accessible to the public apart from that Act, or
(c) excepted land in England which is accessible to the public by virtue of any enactment or rule of law (other than a military lands byelaw).
(6) Nothing in this section requires Natural England or the Secretary of State, in discharging the coastal access duty so far as it relates to the objective in subsection (3), to exercise functions so as to secure that any land becomes land within subsection (5)(b) or (c).
(7) For the purposes of the coastal access duty, a person is to be regarded as enabled to make a journey by ferry even if that journey can be made at certain times, or during certain periods, only.
(8) In this section—
“the 1949 Act” means the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949 (c 97);
“the CROW Act” means the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 (c 37);
“excepted land” has the same meaning as in Part 1 of the CROW Act;
“military lands byelaw” means a byelaw under section 14 of the Military Lands Act 1892 (c 43) or section 2 of the Military Lands Act 1900 (c 56);
“relevant excepted land” means excepted land other than land within subsection (5)(c);
“the relevant functions” means—
(a) in relation to Natural England—
(i) its functions under this Part, Part 4 of the 1949 Act (long-distance routes) and Part 1 of the CROW Act (access to the countryside), and
(ii) such of its other functions as it considers it appropriate to exercise for the purpose of securing the objectives in subsections (2) and (3), and
(b) in relation to the Secretary of State—
(i) the Secretary of State's functions under this Part, Part 4 of the 1949 Act and Part 1 of the CROW Act, and
(ii) such of the Secretary of State's other functions as the Secretary of State considers it appropriate to exercise for the purpose of securing the objectives in subsections (2) and (3).
Specified date: 12 January 2010: see s 324(2)(d).
This section does not extend to Scotland: see s 323(1).