Number 187 on the list of “Things I’m not a huge fan of” is the ‘right to roam’. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind a bracing country walk and I’ve
no not much of a problem with public rights of way and that sort of thing. But why, exactly, should a land owner have no say in whether the public can walk over the vast majority of their land? Why should the assumption be that land is free to roam upon unless the land owner has a damn good reason for it not to be*? And why is it that any time anyone does succeed in closing of some of their land, they’re vilified for it?
Ramblers Association Scotland director Dave Morris said the ruling undermined the intentions of the legislation.
He said: “We think the sheriff has not really understood the land reform legislation and we are particularly unhappy that he’s apparently not taken much account of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
“This gives a green light to landowners to go around the countryside erecting fences without planning permission.
“This is a very serious adverse judgement and may in fact undermine all of the intentions of the land reform legislation.”
And let there be much rejoicing, for such reform legislation could quite happily be done without, thankyouverymuch.
* – ‘course, to my mind every land owner has such a reason: because it’s his and he says so.