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The Countryside Code

The Countryside Code

A great deal of the Countryside Code is just common sense. As our green spaces get smaller and more of us have to share them then we need to try and think of other land users and take care not to harm any animals, birds, plants or trees that you we are lucky enough to come into contact with. Ideally we need to try and leave behind no trace of our visit.

In this way we can protect the countryside for now and for future generations too.

As Adults we also have a responsibility to make sure we teach the kids in our care to think of others when they are out having fun in the Great Outdoors - whether walking, cycling or just having fun in the countryside.

sheep speaking Dog "playing" with sheep &making for the main road, while owners have a wee chat(?) (by Skye Cameron age 11)

My own personal rant would be about are cyclists who just won't slow down when riding along canal paths while others are too "cool"(?)  to ring their bells resulting in near-misses or actual crashes into walkers particularly the elderly and children. Most cyclists seem unaware that by law they are required to give way to both walkers and horse-riders on bridleways.

There's a great wee summary here on the Scouts website of the Countryside Code for kids  -  right from the start get the kids to look at sites like this and learn about how to look after our Countryside.

As a dog lover myself I love meeting dogs when i'm out and about but of course if you're got the dog with you then please make sure it's doesn't bother livestock, horses, wildlife or other people!! (And if you do meet me with my slobbering dog while we are walking then I promise to keep her from licking you and your kids :-)


Fortunately there are plenty of Countryside Code guides available to follow - these do differ slightly depending on which part of the world you are located in.

So here's our wee shortlist of useful Countryside Code links which you can explore if you feel you need a bit more guidance. Hope they're of interest and hope you have fun in our great British Countryside

For readers living in England

Countryside Code in England

Government statutory guidance for England

The Ramblers Organisation (Select your location England or Scotland or Wales; find walks in your area)

For readers living in Scotland

Scottish Outdoor Access Code website - You may remember their fab campaigns featuring dogs named "Jess" and "Daftie" to encourage dog owners to avoid disturbing livestock, nesting birds and planted fields as well as advertising the dangers of cattle to dog owners There's also tips and advice for Commercial Dog Walkers here.

Scottish National Heritage - Your access rights and much more

Public Access to the Countryside in Scotland

For readers living in Wales

Welsh Countryside Code

Natural Resources Wales  - Getting Out and about

For readers living in Ireland

The Countryside Code

Traci Davidson

About Traci Davidson

Been with EFD for over 3 years, how time flies! Have a keen interest in animal welfare and the environment.

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