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You are here: Home > Byelaws

Ministry of Defence Byelaws Website

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This site is being developed to inform the public about our byelaws and the review of byelaws currently being conducted across the Ministry of Defence. These web pages will also enable the public to view and comment on proposed new byelaws as they are made providing a valuable contribution to a process designed to enhance continuing effective management of the Defence Estate in the 21st Century.


A Byelaws Review Team has been set up within the Defence Estates organisation to carry out a review of all existing Ministry of Defence byelaws. The Department's sites are numerous and varied, ranging from coastal firing ranges to garrisons in urban areas, each with its own set of issues. The review therefore will be a painstaking and complex exercise, taking several years to complete. As part of the review each byelaw in turn will be carefully scrutinised and where deemed appropriate a new replacement byelaw will be made.


Byelaws are a form of delegated legislation, used mostly by local authorities and government departments; they cover a defined geographical area, normally regulating certain activities in the interests of safety and security. Presently under the provisions of the Military Lands Act 1892 (s14), the Secretary of State for Defence is empowered to make byelaws to regulate the use of land being used for military purposes. Many of these byelaws date back to the early part of the 20th century and do not reflect subsequent changes within the Department, changes of use within sites or the impact of recent legislation, such as the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. Breach of a byelaw is a criminal offence and as such the enforcement of byelaws is one of number of tools which the Department can use to help protect its sites. Equally the presence of a byelaw can allow public access over areas that would otherwise be prohibited.


It is intended that the review will be conducted in accordance with the principles of Open Government, accordingly this site is linked to the main Ministry of Defence Internet Website.  A link to the MOD Publication Scheme will also be established when feasibility permits. In addition to listing all byelaws that have lapsed and those to be reviewed, it will in due course Advertise Proposed New Byelaws as they are issued, enabling wider public consultation within the process.  After being collated and recorded all responses received during the consultation process will also be included on this website together with the Department's replies.   As the review proceeds copies of all new byelaws made by the Secretary of State will be added to the site under the Reviewed Byelaws category.


MOD Byelaws on the website are defined in the following categories:

Lapsed Byelaws
Revoked Byelaws
Byelaws to be Reviewed
Proposed New Byelaws
Reviewed Byelaws


Additional content will be added to the site as the review progresses.

Byelaws Derivation of Powers

Byelaws Signage

Search the Byelaws

Byelaws Devolution of Title

Serious Organised Crime & Police Act 2005

Public Consultation Process

Ministry of Defence Police

Why Review the Byelaws?

BRT Terms of Reference

Project Plan Judicial Review Judgement Priority List

bullet point MoD Byelaws Website
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Latest News
Ten-year vision for military accommodation launched
In the Defence Estates Ten Year Accommodation Management Strategy, launched today, it is stated that by 2020 the MOD aims to have all UK Service families living in the highest standard of accommodation

Defence Estates has welcomed SEPA's(Scottish Environment Protection Agency) response to its action plan, detailing the MOD's programme of work at Dalgety Bay....release 02/03/2009 and release 12/03/2009
Ministry of Defence (MOD) has signed a Declaration of Intent with Natural England (NE) to improve and preserve the natural environment that makes up the Defence estate....
Excellent waste reduction measures and recycling initiatives are high on the agenda across major Defence Estates (DE) projects at Catterick Garrison....
The transformation of military accommodation hit another milestone today as hundreds of soldiers returned from Germany to brand new barracks at Catterick Garrison in Yorkshire...
An historic building at Portsmouth Naval Base which has just undergone a £2.5m conservation programme has won a top architectural award....
The St Athan Defence Estates (DE) team has won the WALES 2008: Business and Sustainability Award for Waste Management in the Public Sector....