Something I've come to realise, reading my friends' blogs from all over the world, is just how lucky I am to live in Scotland.
Lots of reasons for that of course (haggis, deep fried pizza, deep fried Mars Bars, to name but a few). I guess the 'Scottish Outdoor Access Code' doesn't sound quite so interesting by comparison...
But in fact this Code thingy is one of the best things about this country. Let me explain why.
Regular readers will have noticed how many lovely places I explore on my walks. Mountain paths, forest tracks, routes along the cliffs and down to beautiful sandy beaches, riverside trails, you name it, we go there.
In fact, here in Scotland, we can go ANYWHERE WE LIKE. Well almost. Yes really! The Government says so. That's our Access Code. This is a truly wonderful piece of legislation introduced by the Scottish Government in 2003. It says that you have the right of access (for recreational purposes) over: "most land and inland water in Scotland, including mountains, moorland, woods and forests, grassland, margins of fields in which crops are growing, paths and tracks, rivers and lochs, the coast and most parks and open spaces, at any time of day or night...."
Isn't that just brilliant?
Now there is some boring (but quite reasonable) stuff too, about always acting responsibly, dogs being under close control, not disturbing farm animals etc.
And of course the code isn't perfect.
Had I been drafting the legislation, for example, I would certainly made sure that dogs have rights of access over any cupboards containing goodies and treats. That would only be fair don't you think?
Or am I yet again asking too much?
We totally agree, you should have full access over/to/around and in all cupbosrds containing food.
Access code needs an amendment!
Molly, Taffy and Monty
We wouldn't argue with that Hamish - if you could also get a clause inserted that all cupboards were low down for ease of access by short legged dogs that would be even better.
The current height of cupboards does not allow us ease of access!
Martha & Bailey xxx
My peeps found that to be true when they visted your lovely country 2 years ago. They were interested in looking at some old rocks and some old ruins of some old Roman camp and asked this nice lady at the hotel how to get to them. She said just go down the road a bit, pull off the road and open the farmers gate and go in. Make sure you close the gate and don't pester the cows. Then there were some standy stone thingys in another farmers yard. They stopped and asked the farmer if they could look at them. He said sure, just don't let the sheeps out. Well, she decided those sheep were very big up close and opted for photo take outside the fence. They had curly horns that looked fierce up close. And you could climb about any old pile of rocks. Here in the states it would be fenced off and you'd hafta wear a hard hat to even go inside the property.
If you need help with the treaty legislation, let me know. I can lick envelopes if someone can stuff them.
Yes, you should have full access to cupboards.
Lilly, Piper, Carrleigh and Java
What a great post, Hamish! You have something else that is super. You guys get to ride on trains and buses with your parents! Here that is no go. I can ride on the city bus but only in a CRATE! I would sit nice by my Mom in a seat, but No, No!
I'm not so keen about the eating add-on, I get all I want from my Mom, but the Code of the Country is just excellent!
Thanks for your nice comment about my name Stella/Star and I do like to do nice things most of the time.
And I love to hear from YOU!
Thats neat that you can go anywhere anytime!!
I am with ya all the way about getting access to the cupboards and I would include the fridge too!!! Anytime!!
Hi Hamish..that is a very cool place to live. You are very fortunate. Do you have an accent?
Benny & Lily
Wooos! Woo are one lucky dog! I do not get to go in most historical places, no dogs allowed, it says everywhere.... sigh, I will come to Scotland and help you open (and reach for the basset girls) those cabinets!
-Kira The BeaWootiful
Scotland is a bwilliant countwy and gowgeous too!
I do agwee about cubbowds..not asking too much at all. I hope you don't need my nuwsing, but will come anytme to give massages, kisses etc and cook fow you hamish if you want
Hey there Hamish
You are absolutely right...what a privelege and wonderful rule. Added to that you have some of the best scenery in the world!
We are so restricted here about walkies and there is no control whatsoever, so we have to pick and choose carefully. (Other dogs spell danger too because they are most often not under control)
Wouldn't it be wonderful if we also had access to shopping centres - then I could go with mom? But I suppose that would be pushing it.
MAXDOG IN SOUTH AFRICA
ps Is there perhaps a place in Scotland for us?
Hamish, we too have come to realise how very lucky we are to live here, very lucky indeed!
Let us know if you manage to pass the indoor access code, won't you?
Hey! I just found out about you Hamish from my friends Lilly, Carrleigh, Piper and Java here in the US. My peeps LOVE Scotland. And this legislation is just one of the many reasons! Congratulations on being able to go wherever you want. (Of course.)
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