/ NEWS: Wales to Get Scottish Style Right to Roam?

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UKC News - on 12 Nov 2013
No access 2, 4 kb

Did you know that there's no legal right to climb on the sea cliffs at Gogarth? Have you ever run into no entry signs in the Welsh hills? Well change may be afoot. The Welsh government is currently reviewing legislation surrounding access, and there's a chance this could result in a Scottish style freedom to roam, say the BMC.




Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=68502
Chris the Tall - on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to UKC News:
Would be great change, not just for climbers and walkers, but also mountain bikers
benstu - on 12 Nov 2013
i have lived in Scotland most of my 51 years .It has never been said to me were are you going & in all my walking mountaineer hiking trips iv never came across a sine that say,s no entry ,apart from military ,or airports we dont have it good we have it right Freedom
Bulls Crack - on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> (In reply to UKC News)
> Would be great change, not just for climbers and walkers, but also mountain bikers

Maybe or it could mean the demise of many protected rights of way and their associated maintenance
Lone Rider - on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to Bulls Crack: Rights of Ways still exist in Scotland but like any path anywhere even if it is designated that doesn't necessarily mean that it will get properly maintained.
There is an emphasis on community involvement in path maintenance and quite rightly so.
So it is up to the individual to make sure that paths are protected and to get involved locally with their local authority to help keep paths open.

All the best with the land reform.
The Pylon King on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to UKC News:

We should have the right to roam across the whole of the UK.

Nic DW - on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to UKC News:

Glad to see Wales might join Scotland in giving people their right to roam. Typically tory controlled England is left behind again, perhaps ironically given the history and origins of movements like the Kinder mass trespass. Thankful for devolution!
IainRUK - on 12 Nov 2013
In reply to Nic DW:
> (In reply to UKC News)
>
> Glad to see Wales might join Scotland in giving people their right to roam. Typically tory controlled England is left behind again, perhaps ironically given the history and origins of movements like the Kinder mass trespass. Thankful for devolution!

Not so sure it will happen.. Welsh farmers aren't exactly open to people traipsing across their land.. I can't see it to be honest.
Col Kingshott on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Nic DW: Tory controlled England are generally ruined by a weak labour government!

Not really on subject but......

Hope it goes through.
andrewmcleod - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

It could happen on a greater range of 'undeveloped' land (like the current CROW land), and possibly with a greater range of access?

But I agree, the farming lobby is quite strong in Wales - look at their continuous flirtation with a badger cull before finally deciding to go ahead with vaccination instead. Although their influence is weaker now Plaid Cymru are out of power.
Siward on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to The Pylon King: except for my back garden
Lukeva - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to UKC News: Assume this does not include developed land, similar to the laws in Scotland. Would this change wild camping laws too?
Bulls Crack - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Lone Rider:

Scotland does indeed have rights of way but they don't come with the same level of protection and maintenance as in England and Wales - hence the efforts put into the core path system. maintenance will depend on budgest but at least there is a benchmark of sorts enshrined in highways law ie a route has to be usable for its classification
IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to andrewmcleod: yeah I can't see how it will change CrOW that much.. in the North its basically the mountain walls. The farming lobby in Snowdonia has been very strong and very vocal for years. They still get paid for access which is now legal under CRoW because the deal was for perpetuity as I understand.

But also the Tories are quite strong in Wales.. much stronger than in Scotland. Much of the border strips, where the money often is, and pembrokeshire are often Tory seats.
Cuthbert on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to UKC News:

This is good news and I hope it opens up a bigger conversation on landownership etc.

I may be wrong but is "right to roam" not a term particular to England and SOAC, arising from land reform, is the Scottish version?
IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Saor Alba:
> (In reply to UKC News)
>
> This is good news and I hope it opens up a bigger conversation on landownership etc.
>

why? this is wales and england not scotland?

1) whats it to you..
2) different landscapes..

TBh I think CRoW can be refined, improved, but huge scale changes.. I don't think are needed. We need to sort out rivers, coasts etc.. but the mountains I think CRoW is 90% there.
Tass1 on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Bulls Crack:

Rights of Way north of the border haven't needed the same level of protection precisely because of Freedom to Roam. ROW signs always seemed out of place to me in the Scottish mountains. No point in being directed down a corridor when one can walk where one pleases.
tony on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:
> TBh I think CRoW can be refined, improved, but huge scale changes.. I don't think are needed. We need to sort out rivers, coasts etc.. but the mountains I think CRoW is 90% there.

Isn't there a big gap between the mountains and the rivers and coasts? We had a week in Cumbria not long ago, and a lot of the walking we did there is on low-level paths which are often on farm land, which may or may not be designated Access land. Coming from somewhere where we knew we could go where we wanted within the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, we were very aware that landowners and farmers might have a very different understanding if we went significantly off the signposted paths.
Cuthbert on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

Why do I hope it opens up a conversation? So that we can examine issues around ownership, controlling interests, community and environmental health etc, that is why.
IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to tony: yes, we need to work on that side.. but for vast swathes of the country I don't think we need touch it. And I don't see why we need to discuss land ownership.

IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Saor Alba: 'we'..

Not being funny but you are most probably going independant by the time this comes through. You are quite keen that Scottish decisions are made by Scots.. this should be for England and Wales.

I don't think there are any issues.. we have an inheritance system. Mess with that and we upset everyone in the UK.. not just landowners.
Cuthbert on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

"We" being people interested. Are you going to pour over every word I write on an informal climbing forum and dissect it for holes? I am speaking in general terms which I think is pretty obvious to most.

ADHD on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall: nah forget mountain bikers!
Ramblin dave - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Saor Alba:
Land reform in Scotland and access reform in England and Wales are quite different issues, though, aren't they? This is an obvious oversimplification in many ways, but you could say that land reform in Scotland is largely about empowering local communities over absentee landlords, whereas access reform in England and Wales is often about empowering recreational users over local landowners.
IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Saor Alba: As dave says.. I don't think E&W have the same issue.. half of scotland is owned by (was) less than 500 families.

I just looked for england and wales and couldn't get figures, but I feel that local landownership is far more common and for government to intervene on that will uproot our whole society.

tony on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:
> (In reply to tony) yes, we need to work on that side.. but for vast swathes of the country I don't think we need touch it. And I don't see why we need to discuss land ownership.

In fact, I suspect trying to roll access into discussions about land ownership would prevent anything being done on either of the issues. There's some chance of making progress with access on its own, but this would be lost if it were tied to anything relating to ownership. Definitely much more sensible to keep the two issues separate.
tony on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:
> (In reply to Saor Alba) As dave says.. I don't think E&W have the same issue.. half of scotland is owned by (was) less than 500 families.
>
> I just looked for england and wales and couldn't get figures, but I feel that local landownership is far more common and for government to intervene on that will uproot our whole society.

The nature of the land is very different as well - the Highlands have low agricultural productivity, whereas much of the land in England and Wales has a much higher agricultural value and ownership issues are very different.
Cuthbert on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

I'm just saying it would be good to explore the issue - that's all. Why this seems to have got your juice flowing so freely I don't know.
IainRUK - on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to Saor Alba: I don't think it has, I'm just disagreeing. I think you are projecting a Scottish issue onto England and Wales. Vast swathes, as I understand, of Scotland are owned by absent land lords, and it's land not being used.

In the rest of the UK we don't have such a great issue as far as I know.

There are some estates but not the same extent.

As Tony says I think including any debate will get landowners backs up and kill this in an instant. Coastal access is a huge issue still, same with rivers. I think we can make gains there.
Tass1 on 13 Nov 2013
In reply to IainRUK:

"You are quite keen that Scottish decisions are made by Scots.. this should be for England and Wales." Sorry, that did make me laugh. For decades Scottish access policy was formed in Westminster. We had freedom to roam for decades before Devolution, but an active policy of disinformation tried to prevent it ever becoming the accepted norm. Thanks to the efforts of many across the UK it's now enshrined in law in Scotland.

I hope you get the same freedoms in England and Wales, but I suspect you will find out, like the Scots did, just how duplicitous big landowners can be.
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