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An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 7:19 pm

Marty_JG wrote:
Ronnie Hillbagger wrote:Bothy Bible has created problems for them as the book directs people to park about a mile down a private road at 'Lossit Farm' and because of the associated problems that causes


Right. Let's pause for a moment. So this is not about the Bothy being over-promoted or commercialised but parking spots wrongly stated?

I think we should all pause for a moment then, anyone who has debated either side about commercialisation can undo their top button and let their neck vent.

The closure is not due to commercialisation. The closure is due to wrong information.


Hi Marty,

The closure by the estate is due to information in the Bothy Bible that tells people to drive down a private road and park and subsequent massively increased use due to a commercial guidebook. The estate were not consulted by the author prior or since publication. Call it what you will, but the root cause is undoubtedly bothy commercialisation i.e. without the Bothy Bible these problems would not have arisen. I'm sure that such bothy commercialisation will manifest itself in many different ways but the root cause will remain the same: bothy commercialisation. I'm aware of other bothies facing similar problems where owners have raised concerns to the MBA, it is just that these other cases have not 'developed' into closures or other sanctions, yet.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 7:21 pm

davekeiller wrote:I'm slightly surprised that a closure from September to March is due to overuse as a result of a guidebook.

I could be wrong, but I would have thought that most of the people who would be influenced by such a book to visit the bothy leading to overuse would do so in the summer when it's not as cold and the weather's generally a bit nicer and daylight hours longer.

It's beginning to sound to me like the guidebook is a convenient excuse.


Hi Dave,

If you think that it's and excuse why not phone the estate and ask them?: 01496 840 232
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 7:22 pm

mynthdd2 wrote:false news?


Hi Mynth,

Neither false or even fake news I'm afraid. :D
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Sunset tripper » Tue Oct 08, 2019 7:57 pm

Ronnie Hillbagger wrote:Hi Malky,

I'm failing to see your logic here. Surely each bothy closure has to be evaluated in each case? The 'rate of closure' is truly irrelevant to the fact that a bothy will now be closed due to bothy commercialisation by the Bothy Bible and arguably the MBA's role in supporting it. I say again, how many bothies must close due to the Bothy Bible before you consider it to be as big of a problem as any other reasons? 2, 4, 20..? I have, unfortunately, had to re-state the points as a few folk have deliberately tried to deflect the argument with various smokescreens from the OP, not to mention personal insults.

Please feel free to state why you think I'm wrong - or even start another thread - and I'll happily engage in an objective manner where you will not be denigrated by me at any rate. I'll also happily debate other bothy closures, but surely to god the An Cladach closure is a serious and new turn of events?


Surely if you care so much about bothies you should be trying to be more constructive. Maybe you dont mean to but it comes across that you have some sort of personal vendetta against the author and his book and you have incited others to attack the author on this forum with the thread you have created.
If you get so upset by a situation such as this would it not be better to let the MBA know who you are, and if you have a valid point and support in the organisation come to some agreement or compromise?
For anyone who was thinking about getting involved with bothies or helping out in the MBA, threads like this would certainly put them off which can't be good for bothies. Who would want to get involved with all that bickering and infighting? It's like falling out with your wife and then anonymously telling everyone on Facebook what a baddie she is.
Malkys point is certainly valid, the bothy may well have closed anyway, How many bothies were there when the book went to print and how many are there now?
Why is the parking and terrorising of locals only going to be a problem for 6 months from september and not the rest of the year?
Do you think the book will no longer be sold if the MBA does take its name off it or are you going to petition Amazon and other retailers to try and get it off the shelf?

I've never read the book and I am still unlikely to.

Ps do you know that sales of The Satanic Verses went through the roof when the Ayatollah made such a fuss about it? :wink:

All the best and chill out. :D
Last edited by Sunset tripper on Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby McMonty » Tue Oct 08, 2019 7:59 pm

As a bothy virgin I know hee-haw about bothy politics however reading this thread it comes across as individuals with an agenda against the current MBA decision makers or Geoff Allan specifically.

It might well have been said from estate personnel that the reason for the An Cladach moratorium is down to the Bible but unless all recent bothy users were required to complete a survey which questioned 'Where did you find out about An Cladach?' I would say the true closure reason was down to increased (or over in the minds of some) use and not specifically the book.

1+1 may well make 2 in this case but unless someone can show the working then it is simply some individuals getting an answer they want through guess work. The end result appears to align with the thoughts of some individuals so it appears to be getting used to push a point of view.

Btw... If the issue was parking / disturbing locals rather than overuse did anyone think of putting up a wee, discreet sign? I know we are no keen on plastering our Scotland with excessive signage but in this case it may have worked a charm .
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Essan » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:02 pm

Ronnie Hillbagger wrote:
Marty_JG wrote:
Ronnie Hillbagger wrote:Bothy Bible has created problems for them as the book directs people to park about a mile down a private road at 'Lossit Farm' and because of the associated problems that causes


Right. Let's pause for a moment. So this is not about the Bothy being over-promoted or commercialised but parking spots wrongly stated?

I think we should all pause for a moment then, anyone who has debated either side about commercialisation can undo their top button and let their neck vent.

The closure is not due to commercialisation. The closure is due to wrong information.


Hi Marty,

The closure by the estate is due to information in the Bothy Bible that tells people to drive down a private road and park and subsequent massively increased use due to a commercial guidebook. The estate were not consulted by the author prior or since publication. Call it what you will, but the root cause is undoubtedly bothy commercialisation i.e. without the Bothy Bible these problems would not have arisen. I'm sure that such bothy commercialisation will manifest itself in many different ways but the root cause will remain the same: bothy commercialisation. I'm aware of other bothies facing similar problems where owners have raised concerns to the MBA, it is just that these other cases have not 'developed' into closures or other sanctions, yet.


The Bothy Bible makes no mention of driving down a private road. It just, simply, says "Parking: Lossit Farm" Of course, many bothy users don't drive .....

But IMO the root cause is a certain letter sent anomalously to bothy owners last year by persons who object to the general public knowing about and using bothies, with the specific intent of persuading, through disinformation, bothy owners to reconsider keeping their buildings open.

Fortunately, most owners treated it with the distain it deserved (and some have since offered other buildings to the MBA, or entered agreements for them to maintain existing shelters). But, where perhaps they already had concerns about occasional problems/increased use (hardly a new issue!) it unfortunately, achieved its objective.

"Ronnie" - who only joined WalkHighlands to start this thread - knows exactly what I am talking about.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Essan » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:06 pm

McMonty wrote:As a bothy virgin I know hee-haw about bothy politics however reading this thread it comes across as individuals with an agenda against the current MBA decision makers or Geoff Allan specifically.

It might well have been said from estate personnel that the reason for the An Cladach moratorium is down to the Bible but unless all recent bothy users were required to complete a survey which questioned 'Where did you find out about An Cladach?' I would say the true closure reason was down to increased (or over in the minds of some) use and not specifically the book.

1+1 may well make 2 in this case but unless someone can show the working then it is simply some individuals getting an answer they want through guess work. The end result appears to align with the thoughts of some individuals so it appears to be getting used to push a point of view.

Btw... If the issue was parking / disturbing locals rather than overuse did anyone think of putting up a wee, discreet sign? I know we are no keen on plastering our Scotland with excessive signage but in this case it may have worked a charm .


Well said

And yes, it does seem that a sign ought to have been the simplest solution all round. I understand signs are now to be erected, but find it strange that this approach was not tried first if the parking directions in just one book really were the problem. Notwithstanding that the Estate decided on the closure period and could not be persuaded otherwise.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:18 pm

McMonty wrote:As a bothy virgin I know hee-haw about bothy politics however reading this thread it comes across as individuals with an agenda against the current MBA decision makers or Geoff Allan specifically.

It might well have been said from estate personnel that the reason for the An Cladach moratorium is down to the Bible but unless all recent bothy users were required to complete a survey which questioned 'Where did you find out about An Cladach?' I would say the true closure reason was down to increased (or over in the minds of some) use and not specifically the book.

1+1 may well make 2 in this case but unless someone can show the working then it is simply some individuals getting an answer they want through guess work. The end result appears to align with the thoughts of some individuals so it appears to be getting used to push a point of view.

Btw... If the issue was parking / disturbing locals rather than overuse did anyone think of putting up a wee, discreet sign? I know we are no keen on plastering our Scotland with excessive signage but in this case it may have worked a charm .


Hi McMonty,

Thanks for your reasoned points delivered in a constructive manner. Apologies if my comments seem 'personal' in any way (they are not meant to be and unlike others on this thread I've done my level best to stick to the facts...) but in my defense I have merely reported the facts as they are at the moment. Unfortunately the context of the An Cladach closure does bring into question Geoff Allan and the MBA 'decision makers' as that is where this very sorry bothy commercialism tale started. They are inseparable in this issue. The owners have officially voiced their concerns to the MBA in a minuted meeting and have cited the Bothy Bible as 'the problem'. A 'private road' sign is already there, but it has been routinely ignored by people who drive down the private road and park where the Bothy Bible says to park and then quote something like the 'Bothy Bible says its OK' at the owners when they are challenged. Is it any wonder that the owners are unhappy and thus blame the Bothy Bible and have taken action as a result? Perhaps a better strategy would have been for Geoff Allan to consult the owners prior to publication?
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Essan » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:30 pm

Ronnie Hillbagger wrote: Perhaps a better strategy would have been for Geoff Allan to consult the owners prior to publication?


Personally I think the better strategy would have been for Geoff to have consulted the MBA before publication ;)

But what's done is done. Some move on, some fester in dank bothy corners muttering dark words for years and years demanding the past be changed because they must be right.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:33 pm

The Bothy Bible makes no mention of driving down a private road. It just, simply, says "Parking: Lossit Farm" Of course, many bothy users don't drive .....

But IMO the root cause is a certain letter sent anomalously to bothy owners last year by persons who object to the general public knowing about and using bothies, with the specific intent of persuading, through disinformation, bothy owners to reconsider keeping their buildings open.

Fortunately, most owners treated it with the distain it deserved (and some have since offered other buildings to the MBA, or entered agreements for them to maintain existing shelters). But, where perhaps they already had concerns about occasional problems/increased use (hardly a new issue!) it unfortunately, achieved its objective.

"Ronnie" - who only joined WalkHighlands to start this thread - knows exactly what I am talking about.[/quote]

Hi Essan,

So, the Bothy Bible says park at a farm which is down a private road and you interpret that as not telling them to drive down a private road? That is a textbook example in hair splitting my friend! I've seen a reference to 'anonymous letters' in the mainstream press (Telegraph, I think?) and MBA meeting minutes that you refer to, but are you seriously saying that an estate has closed a bothy due to someone sending them a letter rather than making their own judgement of events on the ground? Now that is far fetched! From what I've heard and from what you confirmed previously on this thread, the owners have squarely blamed the Bothy Bible and not mentioned any letters for the closure. Perhaps you could post a copy of these letters so that people may comment? BTW What exactly do you mean by "Ronnie knows exactly what I am talking about"?
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Ronnie Hillbagger » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:48 pm

Essan wrote:
Ronnie Hillbagger wrote: Perhaps a better strategy would have been for Geoff Allan to consult the owners prior to publication?


Personally I think the better strategy would have been for Geoff to have consulted the MBA before publication ;)

But what's done is done. Some move on, some fester in dank bothy corners muttering dark words for years and years demanding the past be changed because they must be right.


Hi Essan,

That's the point: what's done is not done: it's still playing out, badly and as I explained earlier I have decided to get this off my chest and 'out there' for an airing but thanks for admitting that people that questioned the Bothy Bible and the MBA's misguided endorsement at the time - just over 2 years ago - have been proved right.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby davekeiller » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:58 pm

It seems to me that we're generating more heat than light here.

It appears that there's a mistake in the book in its suggestion of where to park if visiting An Cladach. That's unfortunate, but I'm sure it was an honest mistake. I'm also sure that almost every guidebook in print has incorrect information in its pages somewhere, either through mistakes or because sometimes things change over time and information becomes out of date.

The Mountain Bothies Association have put a notice on their website to ask people not to park at Lossit farm, and I'm sure that subsequent editions of the book will be updated accordingly. I'm not really sure what more can reasonably be done to remedy the error in the Bothy Bible.

It is starting to feel like this thread was started because a few people have a bee in their bonnets about the existence of the Bothy Bible, and the fact that the MBA logo is on it.

It also seems to me that if there are problems caused by inconsiderate parking etc. then these problems would be at their worst during the summer, and a winter closure from September to March would do little, if anything, to ameliorate the problem. The fact that the closure coincides with the stalking season suggests to the cynical part of me that it's possible that the estate are using this as a convenient excuse and might be being less than entirely honest about the real reasons for wanting a seasonal closure of the bothy.
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby crfishwick » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:31 pm

I wondered when when this topic came up😩

Unfortunately nowadays writing "guide books" is the norm. In my own opinion the MBA bothies are now overused by people who don't respect the environs nor haven't a clue on etiquette. Especially the bothies that can be driven to.

Overcrowding is a major problem in certain areas plus even commercial trekking companies use them! Although frowned upon by the MBA. Although they cannot stop them to be honest!
Sadly more estates will withdraw from allowing their buildings to be utilised by the MBA. IMHO.😩
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby bydand_loon » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:42 pm

Essan wrote:But IMO the root cause is a certain letter sent anomalously to bothy owners last year by persons who object to the general public knowing about and using bothies, with the specific intent of persuading, through disinformation, bothy owners to reconsider keeping their buildings open.


Did the letter open with

"Hi Bothy owner"

:wink: :silent:
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Re: An Cladach to be closed due to Bothy Bible

Postby Marty_JG » Wed Oct 09, 2019 12:55 am

If they put signage up, Lossit Farm are legally entitled to issue PCNs (Parking Charge Notices) of £100 per vehicle per day. And they don't even have to do much administration, plenty of people will do the follow-up prosecution for a percentage. But this is assuming they have already put up advisory "private land, in use, please don't park" signage? I suspect most drivers, the vast majority, would be delighted to accept directions. And as mentioned, they're closing for the least busy six months...?? Eh? :think:

Something smells fishy and I don't only mean Islay's seaweed whisky. :sick:
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