Land Reform Act

Walkers

The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) deals with the provision of increased access “sufficient for the purpose of giving the public reasonable access throughout their area” through the provision of a Core Path Network.

The Scottish Outdoor Access Code (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) gives detailed guidance on your responsibilities when exercising access rights and if you are managing land and water.

Note that The Act sets out where and when access rights apply; the Code defines how access rights should be exercised.

Walkers

Quick guide to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code

The Land Reform ( Scotland) Act 2003 establishes a statutory right of responsible access to land and inland waters for:

  • outdoor recreation
  • crossing land
  • some educational and commercial purposes

The three key principles for responsible access apply to both the public and land managers:

  • Respect the interests of other people: Be considerate, respect privacy and livelihoods, and the needs of those enjoying the outdoors
  • Care for the Environment: Look after the places you visit and enjoy. Care for wildlife and historic sites
  • Take responsibility for your own actions: The outdoors cannot be made risk-free for people exercising access rights; land managers should act with care for people’s safety

More information on the Act and the Scottish Outdoor Access Code can be found on SNH's (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) website, and at the Scottish Outdoor Access Code (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) website.