The British Mountaineering Council ( BMC ) has launched a countryside Access Charter, calling on government to secure and enhance public access to England's countryside.
BMC Access & Conservation Officer, Dr Catherine Flitcroft said:
“Public recreation and access need to be at the heart of all decision making concerning our countryside. These are fundamental to people's enjoyment and understanding of our outdoors, helping to feed the desire to cherish the natural environment – a key political theme at the moment. It is vital we lay down fundamental principles to protect public access for quiet recreation and enjoyment of the countryside. These principles must help inform sensible policy decisions including those around the Public Bodies Bill and forestry sale debate.”
The Charter sets out the BMC's views to access to the countryside of England, particularly to cliffs, crags and mountainous areas. It calls on political parties to develop an integrated package of measures, based on core principals, which will further secure and enhance sustainable public access to the countryside.
The BMC calls on government to implement the following 10 actions, more details of which are given in the Charter:
The BMC works in partnership with landowners and conservation bodies to ensure successful access management, where all parties recognise and respect the legitimate interests of others and where recreation and conservation benefit mutually.
The BMC Access Charter is available at thebmc.co.uk/accesscharter