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Outdoor Access right to roam

Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Marty_JG » Tue Jan 26, 2021 2:44 pm

Woodencat wrote:The main thing I have noticed, is that they have legally termed all the woodlands, forest and coastal area as ‘gardens’, therefore restricting it to access under ‘right to roam’.


This is a matter for Holyrood or the courts, we as individuals, they as an estate, do not get to "legally term" anything.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Skyelines » Tue Jan 26, 2021 4:28 pm

Access rights do not apply to - "• Places where you have to pay to go in(10), such as castles, historic houses and gardens, historic sites, and visitor attractions."

(10) Section 6 (1)(f) of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 states that these are
places where the public were admitted only on payment on at least 90 days in
the year to 31 January 2001 and on at least 90 days in each year thereafter.

Basically any property and grounds that has historically charged for access prior to the Land Reform act implementation remains outside the access rights.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Marty_JG » Tue Jan 26, 2021 8:17 pm

"Gardens" is not the same as entire woodlands or coastal routes.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Skyelines » Wed Jan 27, 2021 3:09 pm

Where large historic houses are concerned one cannot make the generalisation "it's woodland, therefore not garden".

Many historic properties had woodland gardens planted as well as the formal gardens closer to the house. These were specifically designed so the owners and visitors could ride or take walks on designed and laid out rides and paths often leading to some interesting natural view or manmade object.
It was not uncommon that these grounds would be surrounded by a wall, often quite considerable in length, to ensure control over what animals were allowed within.
One might think of them more as ornamental woods rather than woods for timber and therefore historically part of the extensive pleasure gardens to the house.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby DomBoyd » Thu Jan 28, 2021 9:00 pm

Let’s not forget that large chunks of Scotland is snatched common land belonging to the people. It has been inherited generationally where it often continues to be mis managed to the benefit of nobody but the wealthy owners. A sign that says “private” means ‘cyclists and walkers welcome’ - I will continue to err on the side of exercising my right to access that land until informed otherwise, and encourage others to do likewise.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Border Reiver » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:42 pm

While organisations like the Ramblers Association have played a big part in getting us access to many thousands of miles of footpaths in England, could the creation of "rights of way" in Scotland maybe at some stage, have a detrimental effect on the long established "right to roam"? I could imagine some less helpful landowners using the argument that if there's a "right of way" across "their land", then there might be no right to stray from it onto adjacent land. I don't know if anyone has been told by a land owner or agent to "stick to the footpath", but I for one tend not to use a lot of the footpaths marked on maps, I find more pleasure from exploring "off-piste" so to speak. Just a thought.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Scottk » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:54 pm

There are rights of way in Scotland and have been for a long time. I don’t believe it has any effect on the right to roam as long as people act responsibly. There will always be someone who doesn’t want people to access some areas and this is where action needs to be taken.
I would have little sympathy for someone trampling through a field of crops but would fully support anyone who is following the code and acting with respect.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby rabthecairnterrier » Fri Jan 29, 2021 5:51 pm

Border Reiver wrote:could the creation of "rights of way" in Scotland maybe at some stage, have a detrimental effect on the long established "right to roam"? .

There are Rights of Way in Scotland, many of great antiquity. Unlike England & Wales they are not marked on OS maps, which is probably the cause of your confusion.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby EmilyD » Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:35 pm

Speaking of "curtilages..." I had no idea what that word meant until a few months ago. Along with OH and a friend, I was descending Sron a'Choire Chnapanaich, one of those lumpy Glen Lyon corbetts, and we picked up the land rover track followed on the WalkHighlands route for the last wee bit of the descent. We got to the road, and then we were stopped by a lady in a Range Rover with an accent straight out of The Crown, and she asked us where we had come from. We vaguely pointed up the hillside and said we'd come off the mountain.

She then said, "You have walked through my curtilage, and I would like it if you did not do that again."

We looked blankly at her, and were like, "Uh, okay," and continued on our way. The track has no signs directing hillwalkers elsewhere or saying anything at all, and the gates were all unlocked. Plus, it's the most logical route down. The track passed within view of some outbuildings, but I've been on many a track that's gone closer to estate buildings than this one did, so I didn't think anything of it.

Were we (and the WalkHighlands route) actually within the "curtilage," or does this landowner need a refresher course on the Access Law?

We were coming down the track marked on the WH route, the so-called curtilage being roughly the area around 464422.

https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/maps/map2_28pt.shtml
Last edited by EmilyD on Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Marty_JG » Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:40 pm

No building no gardens = no curtilage.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Skyelines » Sat Jan 30, 2021 12:47 am

Having taken a look of the area on Bing Maps aerial view the path actually takes you to within 25 metres of Pubil Lodge and along the driveway to the lodge from the road. It is within the fenced area around the lodge and a group of houses.
Looking at the entrance of the drive from the road on Google Street view rather suggests it is the entrance to a private property.https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@56.5444587,-4.4975533,3a,60y,307.26h,84.39t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sa6s1YH32K015W5ADqm61ag!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

On balance I would tend to agree with the idea that it is the curtilage of the lodge, however it is probable that the entrance from the hill gives no indication that you are entering such an area and it would appear from the aerial picture that the house itself is hidden by trees from the entrance, but you may be able to see an adjacent outbuilding.

An easy alternative route would appear to be had by crossing a small stream and following it to the road though it's unclear if there is any fencing in the way.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby davekeiller » Sat Jan 30, 2021 1:54 pm

As noted above, rights of way already exist in Scotland, and have existed since a long time before the Land Reform (Scotland) Act formalised the right to roam.
It's worth pointing out that the right to roam also exists in England and Wales under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act (CRoW), and in general there isn't significant conflict between owners of land designated as access land under CroW and people who want to walk across it.

To return to the original post, it would appear that there are few, if any, areas of the Mount Stuart estate to which there is unrestricted public access. Whether the estate is 100% within the letter of the law I do not know, although I feel it would be unfair to suggest that they are contravening the law without both citing evidence to support such claims and inviting the estate to speak in their defence.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby EmilyD » Sun Jan 31, 2021 9:22 pm

Yeah, admittedly from the road, it looks like a private driveway. But from the hillside, it looks like a gate in a deer fence, like a million other gates in deer fences on land rover tracks.

If you knew that you were not meant to use the land rover track, you could bogbash your way across the hillside, although there might be some interesting deer fence climbs.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby matt_outandabout » Wed Feb 03, 2021 3:59 pm

Sorry - there are a couple of landowners in Glen Lyon that are famous for being grumpy and wrong.

They can be both wrong in statements about the law and in my experience, quite nasty about it too.

Your description of the lady leads me to guess who she is - and I have had run-ins with her before elsewhere in the Glen.

Yes we have responsibility.
However, much access pre-dates the Land Reform Act. Our old outdoor centre has a hill-path through the (fenced, signposted, mown lawn!) grounds - and we had to allow hillwalkers to use it or provide suitable alternative.
Sometimes you have to know your game and stick (politely) to it.

I would refer that one to Perth & Kinross Access Officer.
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Re: Outdoor Access right to roam

Postby Paul Webster » Wed Feb 03, 2021 7:21 pm

We looked blankly at her, and were like, "Uh, okay," and continued on our way. The track has no signs directing hillwalkers elsewhere or saying anything at all, and the gates were all unlocked. Plus, it's the most logical route down. The track passed within view of some outbuildings, but I've been on many a track that's gone closer to estate buildings than this one did, so I didn't think anything of it.

Were we (and the WalkHighlands route) actually within the "curtilage," or does this landowner need a refresher course on the Access Law?

We were coming down the track marked on the WH route, the so-called curtilage being roughly the area around 464422.


There's an active case here with Perth & Kinross access staff. Their first assessment was "On the face of it access rights do apply on the main route past the lodge. It should not be obstructed unless and until a suitable alternative is provided for people to use." but we await further news.
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