We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Stile?

Mary McMahon
By
Updated May 16, 2024
Our promise to you
HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At HomeQuestionsAnswered, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A stile is a device which allows people to cross a wall, fence, or hedge without allowing livestock through. Stiles are typically designed so that people do not need to open a gate or move any parts, simply walking over the stile to reach their destination. The design, however, is unfriendly to livestock, ensuring that livestock cannot escape over the stile. The “stile” has also been adopted in the sense of the turnstiles used in places like subway stations to control entrances and exits.

In the most basic form, a stile is simply a set of ladders which run over an obstacle, so people can climb over. Other stiles take the form of steps, specially designed gaps in fencing, or ramps. If you've ever wondered about a strange structure in the middle of a fence, wall, or hedge, now you know what you were looking at! A related concept, the kissing gate, is a gate which requires force to open, along with a narrow body to navigate the gate's enclosure, and closes on its own.

The goal of both kissing gates and stiles is to allow people to pass through a landscape with ease, without increasing the risk of livestock escapes. When people pass through gates, they may forget to close them, or close them improperly, allowing the animals to get out. It's impossible for animals to get out over a stile, and stiles are easy for people to use, making them popular with farmers and walkers alike.

In nations like England where people are permitted to walk on farmland and many parks and estates, stiles are used to make footpaths easier to navigate, and they may be required by law along well-established paths. People may also use stiles around the home or farm to create a way to pass over a fence or wall without needing to build a gate, since stiles are easier to construct and maintain than gates. While a stile does require periodic maintenance to ensure that it is not rotten or dangerous, it doesn't require nearly as much work as a gate.

Using a stile usually requires full mobility. For this reason, some disabled people have criticized the widespread use of stiles, arguing that stiles impede their access to public footpaths. The need to accommodate people with disabilities is recognized and respected in many nations, but farmers have fought against the installation of gates and other workarounds, fearing that disabled-friendly passages would be easy for livestock to navigate. A cow, for example, can go in most places a wheelchair can travel.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a HomeQuestionsAnswered researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.