If You Do One Thing…

15 years on, we cel­e­brate Scotland’s open­ness

The Scots Magazine - - Contents - By FIONA RUS­SELL

Get out­side and cel­e­brate the an­niver­sary of Scotland’s world-lead­ing ac­cess laws

IT’S 15 years since revo­lu­tion­ary leg­is­la­tion brought a sweep­ing change to how peo­ple could en­joy Scotland’s coun­try­side. The Land Re­form (Scotland) Act 2003 es­tab­lished the right to freely roam land and in­land wa­ter, as long as the ac­tiv­i­ties are done re­spon­si­bly.

The ac­cess rights, which are en­vied by many coun­tries world­wide, have opened up a wealth of out­doors op­por­tu­ni­ties to peo­ple in Scotland, as well as vis­i­tors.

Ben Dol­phin, pres­i­dent of Ram­blers Scotland, be­lieves the Scots are lead­ing the way in the 21st cen­tury.

He said, “It’s easy to take our ac­cess rights for granted, but try walk­ing through a for­est, around a field or along a beach else­where in the world, or even other parts of the UK, and you’ll quickly re­alise just how for­tu­nate we are in Scotland.

“Whether you’re strolling along a dis­used rail­way, wild camp­ing, or rid­ing a moun­tain bike to a re­mote bothy and then wild swim­ming in a pris­tine loch, Scotland is a place of fan­tas­tic free­dom and ad­ven­ture.”

In this 15th an­niver­sary year, we meet four peo­ple who re­veal how the leg­is­la­tion has en­hanced their lives.

Ram­blers Scotland pres­i­dent Ben Dol­phin

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