SA Public footpath across government land question

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Solo

Active Member
1 June 2015
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We have a footpath running around the edge of a school oval on SA Education Dept land. The school is fenced off to the public but the oval is not. Local residents use the oval out of school hours and they also use the footpath day and night to access shops, etc and also walk dogs along it. This has been going on for years. There are no signs prohibiting the public from using the pathway and it is entirely open. However, I know someone who occasional uses the path and she was approached by a teacher and told there was no public access. She wasn't bothered, but it got me thinking about common law issues and public rights of way on the land. I contacted the council who told me to contact the Education Department and they have ignored three of my emails so I'm guessing they just want me to go away.

Do local residents have a public right of way on that land, having used it as a footpath for many years? Should there be signs up informing the public of the path's status?

Thank you :)
 

Tim W

Lawyer
LawTap Verified
28 April 2014
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Solo

Active Member
1 June 2015
10
0
31
We have a footpath running around the edge of a school oval on SA Education Dept land. The school is fenced off to the public but the oval is not. Local residents use the oval out of school hours and they also use the footpath day and night to access shops, etc and also walk dogs along it. This has been going on for years. There are no signs prohibiting the public from using the pathway and it is entirely open. However, I know someone who occasional uses the path and she was approached by a teacher and told there was no public access. She wasn't bothered, but it got me thinking about common law issues and public rights of way on the land. I contacted the council who told me to contact the Education Department and they have ignored three of my emails so I'm guessing they just want me to go away.

Do local residents have a public right of way on that land, having used it as a footpath for many years? Should there be signs up informing the public of the path's status?

Thank you :)
Many thanks for this, Tim! Really useful - it shows the entire oval, including path as "education", which the council did tell me, in fairness to them. I'm trying to find out if a public right of way has been established beside the oval due to people using is as a walkway for so many years. As an aside the map you provided makes a distinction (elsewhere in the area) between RESIDENTIAL and NON PRIVATE RESIDENTIAL. Seems obvious in layman's terms what this means, but the law is so technical - anyone tell me if a member of the public as a right to walk through an aged care home division marked as NON PRIVATE RESIDENTIAL?