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The Countryside Code

Nothing beats spending time outside! The freedom to roam allows us in the UK to use the many available access points and trails to hike, ride, run, and canter around the natural world. We all must understand how to respect and appreciate the countryside since more people than ever like spending time outside.

The Countryside Code (also known as the Scottish Outdoor Access Code in Scotland) is a collection of general rules for people to explore the countryside appropriately. The three main tenets of the Countryside Code—Respect, Protect, and Enjoy—are examined in this booklet.

Honouring Our Freedom To Roam

It is simple to take for granted our freedom to wander. But did you know that the fight for access rights lasted more than a century, paving the way for the Scottish Statutory Access Rights Act and the English and Welsh Countryside and Rights of Way Act of 2000? This code provides rules for treating nature concerning its merits while enabling individuals of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds to benefit from its health and wellbeing advantages. An Ordnance Survey map is the best resource for learning geography and how to get around rural areas.

Adhering to these straightforward rules makes going outside simple and pleasurable.

Be Respectful Of Everyone

  • Respect the neighbourhood and other outdoor enthusiasts.
  • Park equitably by leaving access to driveways and gates clear.
  • As you found them, leave the gates and property. Permanently shut gates once you walk through them. Follow the path, but give others the right-of-way if it’s narrow.
  • Horses, walkers, and farm animals should cause cars to slow down or come to a complete stop.
  • On bridleways, cyclists must yield to pedestrians and horseback riders.
  • Never provide food to horses, livestock, or wild animals.
  • Keep to the designated routes unless broader access is allowed and obey local signage. When in a field, stick to the designated trails.
  • Instead of scaling walls or fences, use gates or stiles.
  • Ruins and historical places shouldn’t be disturbed. Avoid interfering with livestock or farm equipment.

Defend The Environment

  • Take all trash home with you, and leave no indication that you were there (this includes food waste like banana skins)
  • Never start a fire; only use a BBQ where it is permitted, extinguish it after use, and dispose of it properly.
  • Keep canines on the leash and within sight at all times. When near farm animals, keep your dog on a short leash.
  • Since dog faeces is unpleasant and can make farm animals sick, properly dispose of them by bagging them, taking them, and throwing them in the trash once you’ve cleaned up after your dog.
  • Avoid causing harm or disturbing the environment.

Enjoy the Outdoors

  • To be prepared for your route and the weather prediction for the area. Make sure you have the appropriate equipment and a current map with you at all times.
  • Plan your excursion to be aware of potential hazards and escape routes.
  • Provide lots of room for farm animals, especially if you have a dog.
  • Telling a buddy or member of your family where you’re going will keep you safe.
  • Savour the experience, have fun, and create memories

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