Working on over or near our roads

If you are a company and you want to:

  • work near or over our roads, for instance on overhead power cables.
  • put works on or near our land - like telecoms masts
  • build works where they could fall on our land

We need to be sure that what you're building and how you're working won't be a danger to people.

This means gaining our technical approval (as 'overseeing organisation').

The requirement for technical approval

Technical approval is our means  of making sure that structures:

  • are safe and fit for purpose
  • won't endanger road users - or anybody else authorised to be on our land

Legislation may also require you to obtain a licence from us to cover your works (for example, a licence under Highways Act 1980).

Guidance documents

This document provides guidance on the approval process for installing and using scaffold guard structures over the Strategic Road Network (SRN).

This guidance should be used by electricity companies to facilitate the approval process where temporary scaffold guard structures are proposed over the SRN.

National Highways requires all structures erected within the highway boundary, on its land or where they may fall on its land, to be designed by competent persons and safe. This guidance covers generic registration technical approval for design of a mast that would allow it to be used at multiple locations.

Site specific technical approval for a single structure should be made according to CG 300 of the Design Manual of Roads and Bridges.

This document applies to the interface between local roads and the Strategic Road Network in England.

It gives guidance for all organisations responsible for agreeing operational and maintenance issues for bridges and other structures at this interface.  It is jointly owned by:

  • Department for Transport (DfT)
  • National Highways
  • Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning and Transport (ADEPT)
  • UK Road Liaison Group (UKRLG).

Contact us early

It's crucial that you get in touch with us as early as you can in the identification or development stages of your project.

It takes time for us to complete technical approval procedures with you.  If you don't take this into account, it may delay your works.

For example, we estimate a lead time of 26 weeks to process an application to erect scaffolding over our roads.

We will:

  • supply you with the documents you'll need to support your application
  • explain the various stages of approval you'll need to go through and the technical information you will need to supply
  • help you secure the approvals you need within your timescales

Who can I contact?

General queries

You can raise general queries about highway structure technical approval by mailing

Telecoms masts

If you have an enquiry about telecom masts, please mail