The authority governing the highway district was entitled a highway board. The membership of the board consisted of one or more members elected annually by each parish, and known as waywardens, and by any county justices residing in the district.
The highway board took over the property and liabilities of the parish surveyors in its district, appointing a clerk, treasurer and district surveyor. The costs of the administration was to be paid by a rate levied on the district, although the cost of repairing highways was still chargeable as a Highway Rate to individual parishes.
There was no compulsion for districts to be formed, and some parishes continued to separately maintain highways until 1894.
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