Apply for consent to place cables on or over the highway

Consent to lay, erect, or hang cables on or over the public highway

What is it for

This consent grants permission to erect or hang cables on or over the public highway.

Who can apply
Anyone can apply, but you must comply with the terms and conditions of the consent as listed below.
Consent will only be granted to the individual or firm making the application. It cannot be transferred to any other person or firm.
Before you apply

The applicant for the consent must:

  • hold £5 million public liability insurance
    provide a 1:500 scale plan which identifies where you intend to place the cable/s
    provide their risk assessment plan, signing and guarding plan, and emergency procedure plan
Conditions of consent

Made under Section 178 of the Highways Act 1980

  1. The cable shall be placed so as to avoid undue obstruction and interference with users of the highway and at least 5.2m clear of the highest point of the public highway (including a publicly maintainable precinct, or similar) or 3.5m clear of the highest point of a footway or similar. Where a temporary cable is to be laid on the surface of the highway, a cable crossing protector must be used. ‘Ramp’ and ‘Ramp ahead’ signs must be used where the cable protector exceeds 15mm in height. As described in the Safety at Street Works and Road Works Code of Practice "Red Book"
  2. The cable shall be designed and erected and maintained with due regard to a comprehensive risk assessment. Such risk assessment shall take particular account of the erection/laying, maintenance and removal of the cable and the effect of and on all types of traffic that will pass under/over or nearby the cable. Proof of compliance with such may be required by the Highway Authority prior to granting the consent and at any point in the duration of the licence
  3. The erection/laying, removal and maintenance of any cable shall be undertaken outside of peak or traffic sensitive times and shall be signed and guarded at all times, in accordance with the requirements described in the Safety at Street Works and Road Works Code of Practice "Red Book", link above. The Highway Authority may require signing and guarding proposals prior to the approval of the consent
  4. No part of the highway shall be excavated without obtaining the prior express and specific permission of the Highway Authority
  5. The applicant shall ensure that the cable does not cause a danger or nuisance to the public
  6. Except where agreed as part of this licence no part of the highway may be closed at any time without the express and specific consent of the Highway Authority
  7. Any request for an extension to the period for which the licence has been granted must be made by submitting a further application to the Highway Authority at least 48 hours (excluding Saturday and Sunday and Bank Holidays) prior to the expiry of the existing licence
  8. The applicant shall indemnify the Highway Authority against all liability, loss, claim or proceeding whatsoever under the statute or common law, which may arise from the placing or maintaining of cables on or over the highway or removal therefrom
  9. The applicant shall hold public liability insurance for the duration of the licence in an amount not less than £5 million in respect of each and every occurrence or series of occurrences caused by or attributable to any event giving rise to a claim
  10. The applicant shall accept liability for any damage caused to the highway or street furniture by the cable or by the erection, removal or maintenance of the cable and any such damage shall be repaired to the satisfaction of the Highway Authority at the expense of the applicant
  11. Any alterations to cables shall cause the licence to be withdrawn unless the Highway Authority first agrees such alterations. Where such alterations are to be made the licence holder shall seek the consent of the Highway Authority in writing giving full details of the alterations proposed
  12. Nothing in this consent permits the applicant to interfere with or prevent or restrict access to apparatus owned, used or maintained by Statutory Undertakers
  13. It is the applicant’s responsibility to obtain the necessary permission from any property owners to which the cable will be attached or overhang. Where the cable is attached to such property the applicant shall be responsible for any damage caused to property by the cable whilst it is present, including during erection and removal of the cable
  14. No part of the cable shall be attached to any street furniture or lighting column without separate written express and specific permission from the Highway Authority. Where such permission is granted the applicant shall comply with all conditions attached to the permission
  15. Nothing in this consent absolves the applicant from obtaining Planning Permission where such is required
  16. The Highway Authority may require the applicant to obtain and provide a qualified structural engineers report, at their own expense to certify that the fixture to which the cable is attached is structurally strong enough to support its own weight and the loading of any wind or precipitation
  17. Hampshire Highway Authority, Street Lighting Maintenance Management Plan Policy Number 6 covers further, technical requirements for the erection of cables. The following is non-exhaustive and for the full details the applicant must refer to the Policy Document: (a) All apparatus shall be erected, maintained and removed in compliance with the following statutes and regulations: 1. Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. 2. Electricity-at-Work Regulations 1989. 3. BS 7671 Regulations for Electrical Installation
  18. The applicant shall: (a) Carry out an inspection of the cables at least every week to satisfy themselves as to all aspects of its security and safety. The results of these inspections shall be documented and records held for 6.5 years. Nil returns are to be recorded in the same manner. (b) Inform the Highway Authority, of the name, address and telephone number of an electrician who can be called out on a 24 hour a day basis to deal with emergencies. The costs incurred in any such emergencies shall be borne by the applicant. Such an electrician shall hold a City & Guilds approved qualification or its equivalent and be fully conversant with the requirements of all relevant standards


  • The ‘highway’ can include the carriageway, footway and any verge
  • If the applicant objects to these conditions or a refusal by the Highway Authority to approve a licence then he may appeal to the magistrates’ court


There is no charge for this consent.


Be advised applicants are required to give a minimum of 5 working days notice for this type of consent.


If you are happy you understand the conditions and charges