Right, cut to the chase. There's a bit of my usual commute that on the way home I hate with a passion. Its a longish climb that isn't steep at all, more of a gradual thing but is just boring and a complete drag to do. So I was mucking around on Microsoft Live Maps and found an alternative. Now, this alternative I have found is wider than a pathway but not quite as wide as a single carriageway road. You could get a car up it easily but there are no passing places and if something was coming the other way you would be stuck ( if you too were driving a car ). So it is basically a wide tarmac path. At one end it can be got onto from a "B" road. At this end there are absolutely no signs whatsoever that it is "private". At the other end it can also be accessed from a "B" road. Again, there are no signs saying it is "private". The first few times I have cycled down it have been fine. However I was on it a few days ago and a rather substantial metal gate has appeared over it about halfway down the road itself. It isn't a locked gate and can be opened via a lever. However this means dismounting and having to walk through mud to open the lever. Not great when wearing shoes with SPD-SL cleats on. There's no way round this gate, you have to get off and open it if you want to continue. The gate is a few hundred yards down from a farmhouse at the bottom of the drive up to the farmhouse. So first of all, as a "pre-emptive" measure so I know where I stand legally, is there anyway I can find out if this road/path is private or a public right of way?. Secondly, if it is a public right of way, does whoever placed this gate where it is have a legal right to do so?. Although it can be opened, it is blocking off the route completely unless you do dismount and waltz through the mud to the lever to open it. For the record as far as I can see, the fields on either side of the gate have no livestock in them and look arable to me although I may be wrong on that. So it's not like the gate is there to keep cattle/sheep in. This is the first time I have came across this situation so I'm puzzled slightly by the legal ins and outs. I just want to try and find out for my own benefit what the score is with the route so that if in the event some nutty farmer with a chip on his shoulder chases me down the path and screams "Get orf mai land!!!!" I can respond in the appropiate manner. I can provide more details on exactly where this part of land in question is along with a few screen captures of the Live Maps view if that helps?.