/ Culra bothy closed indefinitely

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Only a hill - on 10 Mar 2014
Just read that Culra has been closed due to asbestos-related safety fears.

UKHillwalking news here

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/news/culra-bothy-closed/0010462/

Really hope this can be sorted out before the summer as Culra is a great bothy in a fantastic location. It would be a real shame if it were to close permanently.
bigbobbyking - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

Closed but 'unlocked'...
peebles boy - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

Can't see it being rebuilt can you? Article suggests it would be demolished rather than simply closed....
Only a hill - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to peebles boy:

I agree, I can see that happening too - a real shame. Culra is one of my favourite bothies.
peebles boy - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

Snap. Fond memories of one trip there mid winter by myself, spending over an hour collecting iron hard bog wood, another hour trying to get the fire going...raised the temperature a whole degree to -2!!!

Awoke to the frostiest, clearest morning I've ever seen and had an absolute stunning day on Ben Alder via Short Leachas!
JJ Krammerhead III - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:
noooooooooo
Rob Parsons on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

Seems a complete over-reaction: asbestos sheeting only presents a danger if it's being worked on (cut, scrubbed etc.) All that should be necessary in this case is to keep it painted and in good order.
Raph B - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

What a shame, had many a good night in Culra with friends.
Haggis Trap on 10 Mar 2014
Hmmmm.....
One of the best Scottish bothy's.
Stayed there a couple of nights.
It is almost essential for doing some of those hills.

Really sad if a solution cant be found.
IanMcC - on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Haggis Trap:

Who commissioned the survey? Was it the Health and Safety group of the MBA?
That would be ironic, but not unexpected.
Fat Bumbly2 - on 10 Mar 2014
Very probable, suprised that they have not struck before.
ScraggyGoat on 10 Mar 2014
In reply to Haggis Trap:

I wouldn't call it one the best, but definitely one of the most useful and busiest.

Fingers crossed for a rebuild or solution, the estate has been very supportive of the bothy in the past and generally very helpful and accommodating to hillgoers, and this sort of challenge is exactly what motivates MBA stalwarts. So let's wait, see ........and support when the time comes.

A friend was walking past the ghillie/stalker and a 'Gent' one day, the gent had just enjoyed a grand day, so the stalker suggested my friend join them for a bit of celebration to round the day off. So they sat there drinking bottles of beer that appeared out of the land rover chatting in the evening sun............there's not many estates where that would happen!
wilkesley - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Rob Parsons:

Quite. If H&S adopted that attitude everywhere almost all the farms in Britain would be closed down.
ScraggyGoat on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to wilkesley:

We don't actually have the full story, we don't know what the surveyor 'found'.............they may have found that some of the sheeting was disintergrating, or likely to disintergrate. In which case closure would be appropriate. If the sheeting was intact with no issues, and not likely to be damaged, I would agree closure would be OTT. However we just haven't got theinformation to make a judgement ourselves....

Nigel Thomson - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Rob Parsons:

> Seems a complete over-reaction: asbestos sheeting only presents a danger if it's being worked on (cut, scrubbed etc.) All that should be necessary in this case is to keep it painted and in good order.

Agreed, it's pretty inertt unless you start breaking it up. Encapsulation is another cure, though obviously the added expense of framing and sheeting would be an issue.
I have many fond memories of Culra Bothy though not so many fond memories of cycling across the moor at dark o'clock in the puring rain baw deep in the glaur.
Loughan - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

Seems fairly clear reason on the Mountain Bothy website:

Culra Bothy is CLOSED until further notice because of ASBESTOS CONTAMINATION!!

It is dangerous to enter or use the Bothy or even to approach it as there is now exposed asbestos on some of the outer walls of the Bothy.

You will therefore have to make other arrangements until the situation can be remedied or the Bothy is destroyed and rebuilt!
IanMcC - on 11 Mar 2014
jonesieboy on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Only a hill:

I was in there last weekend! Oh well.
Fat Bumbly2 - on 11 Mar 2014
Not been there for about 30 years, and the place was pretty well solid asbestos then.

The irony of a bothy lost to asbestos being next door to one that burnt down.
Cuthbert on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to peebles boy:

Why don't we volunteer through the MBA? There are many who would like to see it rebuilt.
ads.ukclimbing.com
krikoman - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Fat Bumbly2:

> The irony of a bothy lost to asbestos being next door to one that burnt down.

Maybe that's why they built the new one out of asbestos then.
Loughan - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to IanMcC:

It's from a link on the main MBA website:
http://www.claviantica.com/culra/index.html

which is accesed from this page:
http://www.mountainbothies.org.uk/bothy-details.asp?bothy_id=42
IanMcC - on 11 Mar 2014
In reply to Loughan:

Thanks for the link.
JohnnyW - on 12 Mar 2014
In reply to Saor Alba:

> Why don't we volunteer through the MBA? There are many who would like to see it rebuilt.

Well I've been swithering about a work party for some years, so this looks like a worthy one if/when it takes shape.

Count me in MBA.
david (trees) - on 15 Mar 2014
In reply to nigel thomson
The estate and MBA have always known that there was asbestos in the structure of the building and the survey was not undertaken because people were sleeping in the bothy.
The building is actually in a much poorer structural condition than it looks and requires early and significant work.
The asbestos survey was carried out in advance of this work to ensure that volunteers drilling, cutting, sawing, etc., would not be placed at significant risk by creating asbestos dust and breathing in during the renovation works.
The asbestos consultant carrying out the survey was sufficiently concerned to recommend immediate closure & in these circumstances there was nothing else the MBA or estate could do.
I like Culra bothy and am not a heath and safety zealot but I am from an industrial area & I agree 100% with the closure.
We are now working to see whether the bothy can be replaced which will cost a significant amount of money not least as a specialist company will have to be brought in at huge cost to clear the asbestos from the building and off the hill to a licenced tip.
Everyone is entitled to their view but ill-informed criticism and negativity simply does not help the situation. Everyone needs to accept that we are where we are & the existing building will not reopen.
IF you want a replacement Culra bothy then you need to say yes we want a replacement & help this process along rather than undermining by carping from the sidelines !!
Deleted bagger - on 15 Mar 2014
In reply to david (trees):

Well said! Time for the moaning Minnie's to put their money were their month is.
Fat Bumbly2 - on 15 Mar 2014
In reply to krikoman:

The two existed together at the same time for decades.

Nigel Thomson - on 15 Mar 2014
In reply to david (trees):

> In reply to nigel thomson

> Everyone is entitled to their view but ill-informed criticism and negativity simply does not help the situation. Everyone needs to accept that we are where we are & the existing building will not reopen.

> IF you want a replacement Culra bothy then you need to say yes we want a replacement & help this process along rather than undermining by carping from the sidelines !!

Eh, I think you're getting your knickers in a twist. It was an idle comment and not directed at anyone in particular.
It will be sad to lose Culra but I don't think people will have any problem accepting it. We also aren't carping from the sidelines, merely having a conversation after someone raised the subject on an open forum.

redsonja - on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to david (trees):

people aren't "carping from the sidelines", merely having a discussion on how sad it is to lose a fantastic bothy to our ridiculous health and safely nannying laws. why do people on UKC turn innocent comments into something to argue about?
kinley2 - on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to redsonja:

> merely having a discussion on how sad it is to lose a fantastic bothy to our ridiculous health and safely nannying laws.

Out of interest....as you've called it nannying.....how much do you know about the potential health consequences of asbestos exposure?

Are you satisfied that you can make a fully informed choice in this issue?

I'm no expert on the stability of the building materials, but I do know a good bit about the health consequences. I would avoid the stuff like the plague if there was any doubt.
redsonja - on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to kinley2:

no I cant but if I lived my life thinking of the dangers I certainly would never get in my car or go to the mountains. I think people should be allowed to make their own decisions about things. I would sleep in the culra bothy, no bother. you wouldn't. that's a personal choice
ScraggyGoat on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to redsonja:
There's a difference between making an informed decision on the basis of professional advice and specific knowledge of the building, and making a decision. The MBA have made one and you have made the other.............in a mountaineering context the term "avalanche poodle" springs to mind.

Carry on yapping.
Post edited at 10:12
kinley2 - on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to redsonja:
> (In reply to kinley2)
>
> no I cant but if I lived my life thinking of the dangers I certainly would never get in my car or go to the mountains.

In general competent hill-walkers, climbers and others who enjoy the outdoors have thought about the dangers, understand what they are and have the skills to minimise risk to what they think is an acceptable level. This is an informed choice.

In outdoors terms people who do not understand/are ignorant of/don't think about dangers are described in many threads as "muppets", "numpties", "jeans and trainers brigade" or "MR fodder".

These are people who make uninformed choices, sometimes with outcomes that surprise them.

Children take risks with no knowledge of possible outcome, it is perhaps that childish behaviour in many adults that has encouraged the State to act like Nanny.
redsonja - on 16 Mar 2014
In reply to kinley2:

yes, this could well be true. being a fairly anarchic person I hate "nannying" and prefer to make my own decisions. the mountains are about the only place we are free to do this without so many rules, telling us not to do this or not to do that, to the extent we forget how to have fun sometimes. but I appreciate not everyone is irresponsible like me! anyway, we can always bivi outside the bothy so can still enjoy the area
pra on 16 Mar 2014
You are of course all welcome to the next MBA Central Area meeting, and assist in whatever the future plan is.


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