Agenda and papers for 57th meeting on 8 June 2022.
National Access Forum – 57th meeting on Wednesday 8 June 2022, 10.30 am - 13:20 (virtual and in person at Battleby)
1. Welcome, introductions, apologies – Don Milton – Convenor - 10:30 – 10:40
2. Minutes of previous meeting, & action points and matters arising – 10:40 – 11:00 - (Revised unconfirmed minutes from the virtual meeting 2 February 2022 attached).
- AP55/3: FLS to finalise the guide and send it to the secretary to circulate and to add to the SOAC website (Discharged). The guide has been finalised, a link will be provided on the SOAC webpages.
- AP56/1: NAF sec to invite Graeme Mclean to the June NAF meeting to update the Forum on the findings of the E-Bikes research (Discharged item 3).
- AP 56/2: ‘Access and Roads’ NAF working group to prepare a final draft of the guidance for circulation to the Forum for comments (Discharged – item 5 Mark Wrightham).
- AP 56/3: Mark Wrightham to circulate a paper to the camping sub group to look at the cumulative impacts of camping; potential actions could then be considered by the Forum (Discharged - Update Mark Wrightham).
- AP 56/4: Mark Wrightham to set up a small sub group to revise the access and wildlife disturbance guidance and report to the Forum on any recommendations (Discharged – Update Mark Wrightham).
- AP 56/5: NatureScot to investigate the legal position on liability for third part promotion of paths (on- going – Update NatureScot).
AP 56/6: Volunteers for a small working group and or ideas requested for the NAF/LAF autumn meeting to be sent to the NAFsec (On- going item 9).
3. Outdoor Access with E- Bike, Research Findings – Graeme MacLean – Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland – (Executive summary to be provided after the meeting) – 11:00 – 11:30
TEN MINUTE COMFORT BREAK
4. Wild Deer Management and Access – Tom Turnbull & Frank Spencer-Nairn - Association of Deer Management Groups - (paper attached) – 11:40 – 12:10
5. Roads and Access Rights– Draft NAF Guidance Note (attached) – Mark Wrightham– NS - 12:10 – 12:30
6. Guidance on the publication of routes – Don Milton – (discussion paper attached) – 12:30 -12:50
7. Membership Review – Phase 1 – Janice Winning – NAFsec – (Summary paper attached) – 12:50 – 13:00
8. Future Resources for Access – Don Milton 13:00 – 13:10
9. Forth coming meetings & agenda items - Don Milton (updated work programme attached) 13:10 – 13:20
- NAF meeting – Wednesday 21 September – Battleby & online
- NAF/LAF Joint meeting – Autumn – date tbc – Battleby & online
- NAF meeting – Wednesday 1 February 2023 – Battleby & online
10. Any Other Business (please inform the secretary of any substantive items) – 13:20 – 13:30
Close - 13:20
Wild deer management and access
Association of Deer Management Groups. Wild Deer Management and Access
The Association of Deer Management Groups was established in 1992 to represent its member Deer Management Groups and has been an active member of the National Access Forum since it began. ADMGs role is to:
- Represent members at UK Government, Scottish Parliament, and Local Authority levels on all matters relating to the management of wild deer in Scotland.
- Regularly liaise with appropriate Government agencies and Non-Government Organisations.
- contribute to and coordinate research in all matters relating to wild deer.
- participate with other industry bodies in the development of Best Practice and promote training among professional deer managers.
- promote a coordinated approach to the marketing of wild venison.
Deer Management Groups
Deer Management Groups (DMGs) have developed as a collaborative structure at which deer can be managed on a landscape scale. Our membership includes deer managers with an ever-increasing variety of management objectives including environmental, sporting, agricultural, forestry and tourism. Membership of a DMG is voluntary but we currently have fifty member groups representing around 500 landholdings managing deer over three million hectares of the highlands. (see below map showing our member groups shaded green)
Some of the important roles that DMGs undertake include coordinated deer counting, Herbivore Impact Assessments, deer culling and providing publicly accessible Deer Management Plans www.deer-management.co.uk . Collaboration and working at a landscape scale, has enabled deer managers in the highlands to take an evidence-based approach to sustainable deer management that takes account of the public interest particularly in regard to deer welfare and habitat management.
Deer managers in the highlands are making an increasingly important contribution to meeting the targets set by the Scottish Government in the light of the climate and biodiversity crisis, including tree planting and peatland restoration. Deer management is vital if we are to successfully deliver on these targets. There is no doubt that the message from Scottish Government is that they want to see fewer deer and reduced browsing pressure and we will be tasked with continuing to reduce deer numbers where it is perceived they are too high.
Deer management takes place throughout the year but for many of our members primarily during winter for the red deer cull. At times it can be an extremely challenging job undertaken in the most difficult weather conditions for days at a time. Deer can be very sensitive to human presence and disturbance can cause problems for successful management.
Our membership come from a wide variety of backgrounds and welcome responsible access takers to the hills, with many members providing camping, bothies, and car parking areas to enable people to enjoy the scenery of which we should all be so proud in Scotland.
Most of the year and across much of the highlands deer managers and access takers seldom come into contact but there are times and sites where the chances of this do increase. With more emphasis on deer management from Scottish Government to manage deer, the need for access takers and deer managers to liaise is increasingly important.
ADMG is very clear that the introduction of the SOAC has been very successful and we feel it is vital that those managing deer and accessing the countryside engage in a positive conversation about how we can lessen the chances of any negative interactions on the very rare occasions that they occur.
It was clear to many working and living in the countryside that there was an increase in what might be considered ‘antisocial’ access, usually at a localised level and adjacent to roads, littering increased in many areas and so did ‘dirty’ camping that sits well outside the SOAC. It is clearly a positive thing that people are accessing and learning about the countryside for the first time but how do we encourage people to learn about the SOAC and the responsibilities that come with access? Education is vital and it should be considered as part of the school curricula perhaps NAF could help to facilitate this?
Recognition of Change
It is clear that in the years since the implementation of the SOAC we have seen considerable change and many more people are enjoying the outdoors and the benefits that access to the landscape provides. From the perspective of the deer manager there have been three more changes that we feel need to be considered in how we can engage with access takers.
- Deer Management: Whilst the letting of deer stalking is still important to many deer managers, the emphasis now is often on the culling of deer following best practice in a collaborative and sustainable way. Deer Management Groups now have publicly available Deer Management Plans and endeavour to manage deer in the public interest. The potential introduction of statutory deer culls in Scotland will further increase the pressure on deer managers to achieve culls.
- Habitat: The majority of deer managers in the highlands undertake Habitat impact Assessments in order to monitor browsing pressure with the aim of reducing impacts from herbivores and to meet challenging climate change mitigation targets. Biodiversity protection and restoration are a priority for Scottish Government and will result in an increasing proportion of woodland in our landscape.
- Technology: Information is accessed faster than ever before, often on handheld devices. Whilst it is important to continue to use traditional methods of signage we should continue to engage with new methods of informing people when deer management is taking place in advance of their arrival in the hills, be that through more extensive use of the Heading for the Hills website or through continued messaging on social media as was undertaken by NatureScot in 2021 (see below).
Learning from experience
In preparation for this meeting, we asked deer managers to provide some of their experiences of access, both positive and negative. It was clear to us that much of our membership do not have any serious issues related to access other than the occasional disrupted stalk. What we did discover is that we are experiencing ‘hotspots’ at which access takers and deer managers can be in conflict with one another’s interests. Shortages of car parking availability and increased deer movements due to access at particular times of the year were cited as problematic in some areas and a shared issue for deer managers and access takers alike
There is little doubt that the pressures from access can also cause issues for deer managers at specific times of the year. For red deer management the last week in September and the first three weeks in October are of particular importance. This is the culmination of the cull for stags and for many deer managers the time of the year when it is possible to offset the costs of deer management through the revenue generated by the letting of sporting stalking. The necessity to control numbers through culling and to maintain a skilled workforce who are able to undertake the work means that the letting of stalking and associated venison income are vital. There is also added pressure towards the end of the red deer hind season which finishes on 15 February each year, when deer managers are completing their all-important hind cull in often very challenging conditions. We would hope that it might be possible to further raise the awareness of deer operations over these peak times and to try to resolve potential difficulties between deer managers and recreational visitors before they arise.
There also appears to have been an increase in commercial use of the countryside with people using paths, tracks and hill routes to guide people into the countryside whether this be on foot, by bicycle or electric bike. Again this is a positive thing and provides access and opportunities to learn more about the countryside that we all have available to us. There are however some issues where commercial access is undertaken during busy stalking times of the year without liaison with deer managers and this has been reported as a problem for some estates.
How can things be improved where problems occur?
The Heading for the Hills website has been reported as extremely helpful by many of our members who have seen increased usage of this tool. On the website deer managers can input stalking dates and possible alternative routes when deer management is being undertaken, contact details are provided so that access takers can liaise and find out where access may not be an issue. We understand that it is equally important for deer managers to provide up to date information on the Heading for the Hills website and we are in a position to encourage members to undertake this whenever possible.
Information will be vital in this process and a further look at what information should be provided by deer managers on any signage, would be helpful. In this way we could continue to ensure that all the relevant information is provided that walkers find useful. We could perhaps also receive backing from NAF membership organisations and their logos could be included on signage along with NatureScot and where appropriate National Parks.
We were encouraged last year by the useful signage provided by NatureScot and associated social media message that encouraged access takers to follow reasonable signage and to avoid crossing land where deer management operations were undertaken. We felt this was extremely helpful and we understand that this will be rolled out again on social media this year.
Where we have hotspots at which access can be problematic for deer managers would we be able to ask the NAF members for support to resolve these issues through information provision, appropriate signage and even help with gaining funding for improved car parking facilities and their associated management. It is a common site to see cars parked on trunk roads which in some circumstances could be seen as a threat to road safety. None of these issues are new but, in some areas, have been exacerbated post Covid by increased visitor pressures.
ADMG would also be keen to explore routes whereby we could engage with new access takers of all ages to encourage them to study the SOAC and engage where possible with the Heading for the Hills website. It would be extremely helpful to endeavour to improve public awareness of SOAC and the responsibilities that come with accessing the countryside. Equally we would like to encourage those earning a living from commercial access to liaise regularly with land managers and deer managers in order that problems can be avoided.
We feel that there may be three key areas that may need some further consideration:
- Busiest times of the year: We would like to consider a recommendation that during the relatively short busiest times of the year deer culling should be increasingly recognised as the priority consideration when accessing the hills. While access would by no means be forbidden, the importance of deer culling should be considered as vital and signage and messaging should always be checked when accessing the hills.
- Where the few ‘hotspots’ are found and problems can occur, we would like to encourage Scottish Government, hopefully with the support of The National Access Forum to further consider ways in which extra resources could be provided for solutions, for example signage, improved parking facilities and pathway creation or repairs. This would be hugely beneficial to deer managers and access taker alike.
- Where organisations are undertaking commercial operations that require access and, in some cases, might be in breach of the SOAC for example in not obtaining the permission of the landowner, consideration needs to be given to how the responsibilities of the SOAC can be implemented and if needed be reinforced.
ADMG would be keen to participate in constructive conversation with those representing access takers and ourselves so that we can ensure that walker and stalker can coexist to the benefit of all concerned.
Would it be possible to create a small stakeholder group who could consider some of the issues outlined in this paper? The pressure on deer managers to achieve culls will increase, particularly in the light of the Scottish Government’s Climate and biodiversity targets. ADMG and our members will continue to welcome access takers who operate under the SOAC and would like to endeavour to set up a constructive partnership with other organisations that would like access and deer management to sit side by side.
Thank you very much for the opportunity to present this paper. ADMG look forward to continuing to play a part as an active NAF member.
Roads and access rights – draft NAF guidance note
This paper presents a draft NAF guidance note on roads and access rights.
Members are asked to:
- discuss, and if appropriate approve, the current draft, and;
- consider how best to promote this to the key target audiences.
The June 2021 Forum meeting discussed some of the tensions between the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 (LRSA) and the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 (RSA) and agreed to develop concise guidance to highlight these issues to key stakeholders, including staff in roads authorities. This work was taken forward by a sub-group chaired by the Convenor and including British Horse Society Scotland, Cycling UK, NatureScot, Police Scotland, Scotways, Transport Scotland and the Forum’s local authority/SOAN and local access forum contacts. A draft guidance note is now attached for consideration by the Forum (see annex).
A number of sources already provide detailed technical guidance on provision for non-motorised users and active travel, so the draft NAF guidance aims to be concise and focused and avoid overlap. Because the legal relationship between the LRSA and RSA is not entirely clear, the guidance cannot offer definitive solutions, and aims instead to raise mutual awareness of these two legislative frameworks among relevant professional staff and encourage a pragmatic, case by case approach to resolve these tensions. The guidance also notes the need to approach these issues from the perspectives of recreational users and active travellers, assuming minimal knowledge of the underlying legal frameworks.
There has been some discussion about the addition of case studies as an annex and these might, if carefully chosen, help to emphasise the key points in the guidance note. If on the other hand these simply demonstrate general good practice in the design of shared use infrastructure, they could muddy the waters (obscuring the key points) and overlap with existing guidance that is available from other sources. In any event, no suitable case studies have so far been identified. Rather than prolonging the process (and the guidance), it may therefore be preferable to finalise and circulate the guidance in its present form.
Any further comments on the draft (and the potential merits of case studies) would be very welcome.
Roads and access rights: an advice note
This brief guidance note summarises Scottish outdoor access rights and their importance for a wide range of non-motorised users, particularly in urban and peri-urban areas. It is particularly intended for officers in local roads and planning authorities, and may also be useful to access officers and Police Scotland. This note has been produced by the National Access Forum, which brings together all relevant interests to advise on access rights and access management in Scotland.
Scottish access rights
The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 has established statutory rights of access to most land for recreation and related purposes, subject to responsible behaviour as set out in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
- These access rights extend to all non-motorised users (NMUs), including walkers, cyclists, horse-riders and wheelchair users, and include motorised vehicles “constructed or adapted” for users with disabilities (Access rights are generally taken to include road legal e-bikes as these are pedal-assisted rather than self-propelled, but these rights do not include e-scooters). These users all coexist on the basis of responsible and considerate shared use in line with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
- These rights apply to all land with some exceptions, such as buildings and associated land (including a garden or the curtilage of a commercial building), or land which is excluded from access by other legislation.
- Local and National Park authority access officers have key roles in supporting access and helping to manage any issues, with advice from local access forums.
These access rights are now the default expectation among non-motorised recreational users in most outdoor settings, ranging from hill and coastal areas to urban paths and greenspace.
Relationship with roads legislation
Scottish access rights are integrated with most other areas of policy and legislation, and are an important consideration in development management under the planning system. The relationship between access rights and roads legislation, in particular the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984, is however less clear. The Roads Act specifies various categories of route for different types of users, including:
- “footways” associated with carriageways (more commonly referred to as “pavements”), which are only for use by walkers;
- “footpaths” away from a carriageway, for walkers only, and;
- “cycle tracks” for cyclists, with or without walkers.
None of these categories is equivalent to the broadly inclusive multi-use model that applies under Scottish access rights, and the Roads Act states that it is an offence to use these routes by modes other than those specified above – so cyclists, for example, could not legally use either a “footpath” or a “footway”, which is associated with a road. This approach is echoed by the Highway Code. These types of route are sometimes clearly demarcated, for example on paths marked for shared use, but the distinctions between them and their boundaries with land where access rights apply may not otherwise be obvious to users. There is particular scope for confusion around the urban fringe, as the existence of access rights is particularly widely understood and recognised in rural settings.
Many types of route, including minor roads, can be designated as “core paths” under the Land Reform Act. This has the effect of overriding the above restrictions so that access rights apply along the route. It is however unclear which Act takes precedence in more typical situations where there is no core path.
The complex and poorly understood relationship between these two areas of legislation results in differences of interpretation between local authorities and a number of associated issues.
- The position is confusing for the public, particularly in urban and peri-urban areas, where signage may restrict the range of users in some locations, while apparently similar routes elsewhere are available to all users under access rights. The UK Highway Code also takes a restrictive approach in line with the Roads Act and does not refer to Scottish access rights. There have been cases in which users (in particular horse riders) have been charged with an offence under the Roads Act in places where access rights might have been expected to apply.
- Unnecessarily restrictive design features, such as selective barriers and tight curves, are sometimes adopted for paths and other infrastructure that would otherwise be suitable for a wide range of users. Such approaches may be inconsistent with equalities legislation and wider policy objectives for health and active travel.
- Further legislation could help to clarify the relationship between the two key Acts, although there are no current proposals to do this (Annex 1 summarises some key issues which could usefully be addressed in this way). For the moment, these issues will therefore need to be addressed by a pragmatic approach.
Advice from the National Access Forum
- Scottish access rights provide the foundation for national promotion of outdoor recreation and active travel. These rights apply to most land (with minor exceptions) and are now widely recognised among NMUs. Planning, provision and management for recreation and active travel should therefore adopt an inclusive approach by default, anticipating responsible use by all users within access rights.
- If further underpinning is considered necessary to support this approach, this can be achieved by designating routes as core paths.
- Where full shared use is not practical, for example on busy urban footways, the more restrictive framework taken by the Roads Act may be appropriate. If choosing to emphasise this in particular places, it would therefore be important to consider the potential challenge of communicating this to the public and the risk of displacing vulnerable users onto adjacent carriageways.
- Although access rights do not depend on the availability of paths or other infrastructure, any such provision should, where physically possible, be inclusive in design to accommodate the full range of potential users. Key sources of guidance on the design of infrastructure for outdoor recreation and active travel are listed in Annex 2.
- It is crucial to liaise with the relevant local access officer to ensure that new developments, including new road and active travel schemes, are planned and implemented in an integrated way which respects access rights, ensures connectivity and is clear and intuitive for users.
- Engagement with local access forums and relevant user groups (including equestrians) is also likely to be important in conjunction with more significant developments, and this decision can be guided by discussion with the access officer.
- Police officers should be aware that access rights and roads legislation are both relevant when assessing whether an offence has been committed - and that the public may reasonably believe that they are legitimately exercising access rights.
About the National Access Forum
The National Access Forum advises on matters relating to Scottish access rights and includes a broad range of recreation, land management and public bodies, along with other relevant interests. The Forum has 26 full members and 66 corresponding members, with the Scottish Government attending as an observer, and is chaired by an independent elected Convenor. This advice was developed by a sub-group of Forum members comprising British Horse Society Scotland, Cycling UK, NatureScot, Police Scotland, Scotways, Transport Scotland and a local access forums’ representative.
Annex 1: Potential areas for future legislative change
The issues highlighted in this note could in part be addressed through legislative change, although there are no current plans to do this. Areas for possible consideration include:
- Amending the categories of “road” in section 151(1) of the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 to provide an option that aligns with the full range of users covered by rights of responsible access under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.
- Clarifying the relationship between:
- section 9(b) of the 2003 Act, which indicates that access rights do not extend to “being on or crossing land for the purpose of doing anything which is an offence”;
- section 6(1)(d) of the same Act, which indicates that access rights do not extend to land “to which public access is…prohibited, excluded or restricted” under other enactments, and;
- section 129(5)(d) of the 1984 Act, which conversely indicates that the offence under that section does not apply “where there is a specific right” allowing use of the route.
These provisions appear to create a circular relationship between the two Acts and it is not clear which would take precedence in any given situation.
Annex 2: Key sources of further guidance
Outdoor access design guide: advice on the selection and design of outdoor access furniture and structures such as gates, fences and boardwalks, published by Paths for All (2018).
Cycling by Design: detailed guidance on the design of cycle infrastructure published by Transport Scotland (2021).
Walking, cycling and horse-riding assessment and review (GG 142): UK-wide guidance setting out the process for Walking, cycling and horse-riding assessment and review (WCHAR) plans as part of trunk road schemes - led in Scotland by TS (2019).
Advice on funding and promotion of active travel from Paths for All.
Further information about Places for Everyone funding administered by Sustrans.
Guidance on publication of routes
Reviewing guidance on the publication of route information
This paper from FLS, SLE and the Convenor seeks Forum views on whether further guidance on:
- publication of previously unrecorded or unmarked walking, cycling (In this context, cycling is considered to include the use of E-Bikes), riding, climbing and water sports routes by parties other than the land manager (In this context, land managers includes owner)
- the periodicity of review and verification required for guidance already published
is required and, if so, the nature of that guidance.
The Forum is asked to comment on the paper and consider whether a further review and updated guidance on this issue is required.
Control of what is published on the internet or social media by an individual is effectively impossible and the land manager is unlikely to be aware of the majority of what is published relating to the land that they manage.
Land managers have identified concerns about the question of responsibility with, from the land manager’s perspective, a difference between ‘promoted routes’ and ‘suggested routes’. The former being routes that are actively promoted and managed by the land manager and requiring a higher duty of care to members of the public than on an unpromoted trail accessed under SOAC, and the latter being routes that people may enjoy but it is recognised that there is not the same duty of care for visitor infrastructure, maintenance and land manager liability as there would be for a promoted route. A key aspect is land manager involvement in the description of the route so that visitors have ‘no nasty surprises’. The text description is also a critical safety tool as the exact route promoted can have safety implications for the land manager and visitors – such as conflict with livestock / planned works / machinery/etc. Management and maintenance effort is therefore focused principally on the trails that are promote by the land manager. FLS, for example, regards promotion as any one of the following: website, waymarking, leaflets and route panels.
Even for the sites of land managers and Access Authorities, there is no guarantee that the information provided has been routinely reviewed and updated and provides information on current, safety related activities such as tree felling, maintenance and repairs. For Access Authorities access information requires on going liaison with the relevant land manager. There is currently no consistent guidance on what the periodicity of review and assessment of route suitability should be.
The Forum has discussed the general issue of route promotion on a number of occasions and cited to individuals preparing access information para 3.63 of the Code: “If you are writing a guidebook, leaflet or other promotional material about access in an area, try to talk to the relevant land managers to see if any local issues relating to privacy, safety or conservation need to be referred to in the publication.” However, it is difficult to pre-emptively identify and target the significant and varied numbers from the limited and irregular end of the spectrum of those publishing suggestions for routes, or simply relating their experiences.
The text description for a route, when done well, is an important safety tool. The text helps the visitor to understand the risks of the route and whether it is suitable for them. The industry standard for this approach, The Paths for All, Path Managers Guide to Grading, however is not always followed. https://www.pathsforall.org.uk/resource/the-path-managers-guide-to-grading
For mountain bike routes there is a grading scheme for routes: Blue, Green, Red and Black to show the severity of the route for the visitor.
Authority of the Promoter
The Authority of the promotor of the route is likely to influence the accuracy expectation of the visitor. For example, if a route is promoted by a local authority or a national park authority the expectation will be high that the information is accurate. Whereas there will be a lower expectation on a crowd sources resource like Strava / Walk the Highlands or the publications of an individual. Access Authorities, in particular, will be expected to provide reliable information which is current and approved by the land manager.
There is no clear and recognised definition of what a “promoted” or “suggested/ recommended” route means and there is the additional difficulty in getting any agreed definition and understanding to the intended audience.
Land managers have concerns that “promoted” access routes require a higher standard than is necessary for access taken under the SOAC. This might also apply if the promotion has not been verified or reviewed to ensure that the information supplied remains current, safe and accurate.
Guidance on frequency of review of information provided would limit potential risks associated with the information no longer being accurate and correct.
Access to information
Land managers are not always aware of what is published on the internet and social media and have concerns that inaccurate information may subject them to an increased liability.
Access takers are not always aware of the different standards of accuracy and currency of the wide variety of information available.
The Forum is requested to:
Consider if the issues, above, are of sufficient concern to undertake further investigation and review of the subject and, if so:
Advise on how best to provide land managers and access takers with the understanding necessary to exercise their responsibilities in the appropriate manner.
Membership review phase 1
NATIONAL ACCESS FORUM – Paper on the first phase of the Membership Review
This brief paper outlines the action taken to review the membership of the National Access Forum as instructed by the NAF on 22 September 2021 and according to the NAF operating principles which require a review of membership every four years.
Members are invited to note the progress with the first phase of the membership review and the resulting changes to full and corresponding member status.
The first phase of the membership review focused on two groups; Recreational bodies, and Land Management bodies. All current full and corresponding members of these groups, totalling some 29 organisations, were contacted by email in March to ascertain if they wished their status to remain the same. See Annex 1 for groupings and members.
Within the Recreational Bodies grouping, five of the current full members wish to remain as full members (British Horse Society Scotland, Cycling UK Scotland, Mountaineering Scotland, Ramblers Scotland, Scottish Canoe Association) whereas Scottish Sports Association wishes to move from full to corresponding membership. Only one of the corresponding members Scottish Cycling wished to be considered for full membership. Some of the other corresponding members have yet to reply and are missing named contacts due to changes in personnel but will be retained on the corresponding members list in the meantime.
Within the Land Management Bodies grouping, all of the current full members wish to remain as full members (Association of Deer Management Groups, British Association for Shooting and Conservation, Historic Houses Scotland, NFU Scotland, Scottish Land and Estates and Confederation of Forest Industries). Only one of the corresponding members, the National Sheep Association Scotland wished to increase their status to full membership. The review also picked up a couple of name changes and a couple of corresponding member organisations have yet to confirm.
Outcome of the Review
Forum members are requested to note the membership responses from the Outdoor Recreational Bodies and the Land Management Bodies groupings. Within the Outdoor Recreational Bodies the Forum is asked to consider the request from Scottish Cycling (represented by Graeme Maclean of Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland) to take up the place vacated by the Scottish Sports Association.
As no places were vacated by existing full members in the Land Management Bodies grouping, and to retain a broad balance, it is suggested that the NSAS remain as corresponding members but develop a closer working relationship on access matters with their counterpart organisations, SLE and NFUS. The Forum is asked if they support this approach.
The review has been particularly useful in identifying the changes in bodies listed and updating the contacts for other corresponding members. It also indicates that the current full members of the Forum continue to actively represent all the major sectors of these two groupings. The second phase of the membership review will focus on the remaining groups namely: Public bodies, Other bodies (educational, commercial and tourism, conservation), Other relevant interests and Professional bodies. This will commence in the summer with a report to the NAF meeting in September.
Janice Winning (NAFsec) - June 2022
Annex 1: National Access Forum Current Members (March 2022) * = new/updated
Full members are indicated in bold, and attend meetings; the other bodies are the Corresponding Member organisations, who are emailed all meeting details, and can submit comments for meetings discussions.
|Outdoor recreation bodies||
British Horse Society Scotland
Cycling UK Scotland
Rough Stuff Fellowship (Off road cycle touring and MTB club)
Royal Yachting Association (Scotland)
Scottish Anglers’ National Association
Scottish Canoe Association
Scottish Carriage Driving Association
Scottish Hang Gliding & Paragliding Federation
Scottish Hill Runners
Scottish Orienteering Association
Scottish Sports Association
Sub Aqua Association (Scotland)
|Land Management bodies||
Association of Deer Management Groups
Fisheries Management Scotland
British Association for Shooting & Conservation
Confederation of Forest Industries - Confor
Historic Houses Scotland
National Sheep Association (Scotland)*
Scottish Association for Country Sports
Scottish Crofting Federation
Scottish Golf Union
Scottish Land & Estates
Forestry & Land Scotland*
Health & Safety Executive
Historic Environment Scotland
Local Access Forums
National Park Authorities
NHS Health Scotland
Office of Rail Regulation
Scottish Local Authorities
Duke of Edinburgh Scotland
Field Studies Council
Outward Bound Scotland
Royal Highland Education Trust
Scottish Advisory Panel for Outdoor Education
Scout Association Scotland
Association of Mountaineering Instructors
British Holiday and Home Parks Association
Scottish Adventure Activities Forum
Scottish Agri Tourism
Scottish Chambers of Commerce
Scottish Youth Hostels Association
Trekking & Riding Association of ScotlandWild Scotland
Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust
John Muir Trust
National Trust for Scotland
Scottish Wildlife Trust
Woodland Trust Scotland
|Other relevant interests||
Fields in Trust
Green Action Trust*
Kennel Club/Scottish Kennel Club
Mountain Bothies Association
Paths for All Partnership
Salmon and Trout Association
Scottish Autocycle Union
Scottish Disability Equality Forum
Scottish Wildland Group
Association of Heads of Outdoor Centres
Law Society of Scotland
Royal Town Planning Institute
Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Scottish Countryside Rangers Association
Scottish Gamekeepers Association
Scottish Outdoor Access Network
Scottish Raptor Monitoring Group
Scottish Government - (observer member)