The camping and caravan clubs anti wild camping letter.

Fisherman

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Well I got my copy of the camping and caravan clubs magazine this morning, and the steam is still coming out of my ears. Do these people not realise that a large proportion of their members own campers and motorhomes, and most of them “wild camp”. Scott Currie claims to own a campervan, yet places tuggers and us in the same boat. Not what I would have expected from someone with knowledge of our chosen pastime. I have written to the club, Informing them that I am seriously considering leaving them, and I am serious. I know they have a bias even a dislike of us, I am not niave. But I wrongly assumed that both sides simply ignored this for each other’s betterment. But for me this totally biased letter has crossed a line. I am not stating that what Scott Currie reports does not happen, but his comments clearly infer that we are all alike. Also his patronising insulting comment that he hoped no members would do this just made matters worse.

Heres my reply, I doubt if they will publish it, they don’t want the dark side to be heard do they now. :)


I wish to complain about the letter you published in your June magazine, from Scott Currie regarding wild camping.
His comments were disgraceful and an insult to the vast majority of us who enjoy wild camping in locations were there are no campsites or other forms of accommodation. I have never dumped rubbish anywhere in my life, nor emptied a chemical toilet anywhere other than in the appropriate place. As for parking in front of anyone’s home, I simply would not be interested in doing so, and I think I speak for the vast majority of our community. This letter may cost you members, myself included. I am furious with you for publishing it, and so are many others.
I bought a Motorhome to enjoy the freedom it offers. I also have enjoyed campsites run by yourselves, the caravan and Motorhome club who I am also a member of, and many independent campsites.
I feel you owe myself and many others an apology for publishing this insulting, narrow minded, ill informed letter, written by someone who does not seem to know the difference between a Motorhome and a caravan.

If I don’t receive an apology I and many others on various forums will seriously consider leaving your organisation, and that would be a shame.

Times are changing many campsites now cater for more or as many Motorhomes than caravans, and like it or not most of these Motorhomers enjoy responsible and considerate wild camping, not Scott Curries version of wild camping.

I would be pleased if you published this letter, but somehow I don’t reckon you want the other side of the story to be told. As for recommending that we always stay in campsites, I think I know why you would recommend that, hence your obvious bias in printing such a letter in the first place.

Yours sincerely


And here’s the letter.

2C7C0E9E-EA2D-44A0-A13C-EF3E22C61810.jpeg
 
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mistericeman

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I can't see a great problem with what's written to be honest....
Whilst you without doubt DO abide by not dropping rubbish, emptying toilets etc....
A lot of us HAVE had experience of witnessing it.....

As for the 'wild' camping bit... Its not permitted in a motorised vehicle as per the 2003 land reform act (though a blind eye is usually turned).

Storm in a teacup IMHO.
 

2cv

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I can't see a great problem with what's written to be honest....
Whilst you without doubt DO abide by not dropping rubbish, emptying toilets etc....
A lot of us HAVE had experience of witnessing it.....

As for the 'wild' camping bit... Its not permitted in a motorised vehicle as per the 2003 land reform act (though a blind eye is usually turned).

Storm in a teacup IMHO.
I think that this is confusing wild camping as in a tent to spending the night in a parked vehicle, which may not be on private land.
 

mistericeman

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I think that this is confusing wild camping as in a tent to spending the night in a parked vehicle, which may not be on private land.
As I said... I've always understood that 'wild' camping applied only to none motorised forms...


The rights exist only if they are exercised responsibly, as specified in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. Access rights apply to any non-motorised activities, including walking, cycling, horse-riding and wild camping. They also allow access on inland water for canoeing, rowing, sailing and swimming.

It's pretty clear, although a blind eye is/was usually turned as long as you weren't acting like some sort of ned.
 

2cv

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As I said... I've always understood that 'wild' camping applied only to none motorised forms...


The rights exist only if they are exercised responsibly, as specified in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. Access rights apply to any non-motorised activities, including walking, cycling, horse-riding and wild camping. They also allow access on inland water for canoeing, rowing, sailing and swimming.

It's pretty clear, although a blind eye is/was usually turned as long as you weren't acting like some sort of ned.
I don’t think that any “blind eyes” are needed if parked and staying overnight in a vehicle. The regulations quoted specifically exclude motor vehicles from the rights, but most are not parking off road so the wild camping rules are not relevant.
 

Biggarmac

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Rob Ganley is correct. He can only state the legal position. Wild camping in Scotland is defined as camping with a tent with no motorised transport involved. What we do is free camping or off grid camping. We should be mindful of the rights of local people in the places we visit. The CCC help us by allowing members to use some of their campsites to service our units, even when not staying there. www.campingandcaravanningclub/service-stop-off-points.
The Scottish Islands have for the last few years been invaded by motorhomers (and caravanners) who have no idea of the proper way to behave. The letter writer is from one of the islands, as are many of my relatives. They are all heartedly sick of thoughtless visitors who come with all their food and drink, buy nothing locally and leave mess. I know that many of us pick up the rubbish left by others, mainly car visitors. The letter writer is right to ask us to pay for facilities this year as many small businesses in the highlands and islands, as everywhere else, are having a hard time.
 

Fisherman

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Reply from CCC

Thanks for taking the time to get in touch about this. I've received this response from the editor:

We're sorry you feel we should not have published this letter, however our Mailbag section exists to give voice to members' opinions on all matters relating to camping and caravanning.

Mr Currie was responding to a photo in the magazine that portrayed what could be interpreted as a motorhome being used for wild camping on the Isle of Skye. Wild camping is clearly a very emotive subject and the debate surrounding it could fill many pages so in order to help provide context to Mr Currie's letter we felt it was important to reply, stating the law in relation to wild camping in Scotland in a motor vehicle for purposes of clarification.

Our organisation cannot condone any activity that would contravene laws, local or national, hence the wording used.

We would be happy to receive direct responses to Scott Currie's letter with a view to publication. These would be subject to editorial scrutiny in the usual way.

Kind Regards,

Emily
 

Fisherman

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So we now know that mr Currie lives in Skye, and to be honest I think it adds a new perspective on this debate. I have every sympathy for mr Currie, and I only wish that this had been mentioned in his letter.
Personally speaking I would only venture to Skye in late autumn or early spring.
The last time I set foot on Skye was before I bought my first van, and I was driving a car. Things were not as bad then as they are now. But the main problem in Skye is the amount of traffic and visitors in relation to what facilities are available. Our neighbour was there last year and had to wait over half an hour to get into the toilet the demand was so great. Skyes main problem is not us, but the amount of traffic on the island with nowhere to park. Parking in passing bays on single track roads is common place.

But my gripe with this letter is not about laws and what we can do, can’t and shouldn't do, it’s about perceptions. Had I read that letter ignorant of us and what we do, I would have assumed that many if not most of us behave this way. That time me is what really matters, not the legal rights and wrongs. We have on many occasions lifted mess left in carparks, on one occasion with no bins, we took it away with us and binned it elsewhere.

Also I don’t have any figures, but a large percentage of these Motorhome owners will come from outside the uk, we see them all the time up here, and they nearly all say that they have been to Skye or are heading there. Many are not aware about the lack of facilities. I always recommend not visiting Skye in summer to those I meet. Hopefully one day things will improve with better facilities and less visitors.

We tend to do three nights wilding, then one or two nights in a campsite, that way we are never in such a position as having nowhere to empty our toilet, and grey water.

I think I have calmed down a bit, and I will reply more sensitively to their reply.
 

chrisjones18

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Both the " two " clubs are out pricing themselves with their nightly charges, they only have themselves to blame when people leave
The uk needs to understand the difference between "parking" and "camping" the way the rest of the world does.
The UK government heavily taxes vehicles in numerous ways and free parking facilities should be available in every town........what are they called ???? I wonder..........
Though it wont happen in the uk as the two same clubs opposed them when the question of aires went through parliament years ago .....
Bugger me, I wonder why........
 

davef

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The guy signs of as being from Argyll and Bute - so he wont be from Skye.
 

barge1914

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Rob Ganley is correct. He can only state the legal position. Wild camping in Scotland is defined as camping with a tent with no motorised transport involved. What we do is free camping or off grid camping. We should be mindful of the rights of local people in the places we visit. The CCC help us by allowing members to use some of their campsites to service our units, even when not staying there. www.campingandcaravanningclub/service-stop-off-points.
The Scottish Islands have for the last few years been invaded by motorhomers (and caravanners) who have no idea of the proper way to behave. The letter writer is from one of the islands, as are many of my relatives. They are all heartedly sick of thoughtless visitors who come with all their food and drink, buy nothing locally and leave mess. I know that many of us pick up the rubbish left by others, mainly car visitors. The letter writer is right to ask us to pay for facilities this year as many small businesses in the highlands and islands, as everywhere else, are having a hard time.
Yup, whenever those looking after the local loos provide a donation box I am more than happy to put something in it....perhaps more should so we can show our appreciation.
 

Nabsim

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I dont think the majority of people with motorhomes/campervans go off grid. From what I see and read its a small minority who do this. The majority of folks with motorhomes use them exactly the same as caravans, load up and drive to a site. Why they ever bought a motorhome I have no idea as they would be much better off with a car and caravan.

If the Scottish law is saying motorised vehicles does that mean you could drop off a caravan and legally stay?

The big two clubs are against anything that means you aren't staying on their sites and always have been so I dont know why anyone would be surprised. I am a member of both in spite of this as I do make use of them when needs must. The biggest enemy for motorhomes and camper vans is other motorhome and campervan owners, its nearly always them that post up about indiscretions
 

vindiboy

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Storm in a Tea Cup, the letter was from a member who stated his concerns NOT an official of the CCC everyone is entitled to an opinion and is entitled to Air it, the fact that the club decided to print it is another matter altogether , I love wild camping where ever I can and we also use the CCC club in the UK as it is a great way to get around the Country cheaply using CLs DA Meets and Temporary Holiday sites , we do no use Club Sites unless a rally is being held on one at the time. I have seen some Vanners Wild Camping and some of their actions make me cringe so what must uninitiated members of the public think ? whether Wild Camping is legal or not long may it last I say doing it sensibly is the thing to do, I feel the OP has just drawn more adverse attention to our Hobby.
 

Fisherman

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I have to write a reply to mr Currie, and they have indicated that subject to editorial scrutiny they will publish it.

Possibly I got my knickers in a twist this morning, but I don’t think that letter did us any favours, and portrayed us in a poor light unfairly In my honest opinion.

Of course there are idiots amongst us, but there are plenty more idiots who don’t own Motorhomes, yet it’s us that solely get a bad press. I have met many good people whilst out Motorhoming, I can’t remember them all, but I can vividly remember the two I did meet who did something I thought was not worthy of us.
I reckon that says something.
 

mariesnowgoose

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I have to write a reply to mr Currie, and they have indicated that subject to scrutiny they will publish it.

Possibly I got my knickers in a twist this morning, but I don’t think that letter did us any favours, and portrayed us in a poor light unfairly.

Of course there are idiots amongst us, but there are plenty more idiots who don’t own Motorhomes, yet it’s us that solely get a bad press. I have met many good people whilst out Motorhoming, I can’t remember them all, but I can vividly remember the two I did meet who did something I thought was not worthy of us.
I reckon that says something.
Don't forget that what we do is still a minority activity, best to try and not get sucked into too much navel gazing.
It's not good for our health! ;)

Also, there are many others (cyclists, walkers, joggers, surfers, water-skiers, rock climbers, boating folk etc. ad infinitum) who have been doing some really stupid things since this pandemic started (and some are still doing stupid things and will continue to do them, unfortunately).

What about the tent campers who went to North Yorkshire this last weekend to 'wild camp' and got splashed all over the news?
They were fined and sent home. Which proves you definitely don't need a campervan to be a d*ck! ;)😂
 

hg41hs

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Well I got my copy of the camping and caravan clubs magazine this morning, and the steam is still coming out of my ears. Do these people not realise that a large proportion of their members own campers and motorhomes, and most of them “wild camp”. Scott Currie claims to own a campervan, yet places tuggers and us in the same boat. Not what I would have expected from someone with knowledge of our chosen pastime. I have written to the club, Informing them that I am seriously considering leaving them, and I am serious. I know they have a bias even a dislike of us, I am not niave. But I wrongly assumed that both sides simply ignored this for each other’s betterment. But for me this totally biased letter has crossed a line. I am not stating that what Scott Currie reports does not happen, but his comments clearly infer that we are all alike. Also his patronising insulting comment that he hoped no members would do this just made matters worse.

Heres my reply, I doubt if they will publish it, they don’t want the dark side to be heard do they now. :)


I wish to complain about the letter you published in your June magazine, from Scott Currie regarding wild camping.
His comments were disgraceful and an insult to the vast majority of us who enjoy wild camping in locations were there are no campsites or other forms of accommodation. I have never dumped rubbish anywhere in my life, nor emptied a chemical toilet anywhere other than in the appropriate place. As for parking in front of anyone’s home, I simply would not be interested in doing so, and I think I speak for the vast majority of our community. This letter may cost you members, myself included. I am furious with you for publishing it, and so are many others.
I bought a Motorhome to enjoy the freedom it offers. I also have enjoyed campsites run by yourselves, the caravan and Motorhome club who I am also a member of, and many independent campsites.
I feel you owe myself and many others an apology for publishing this insulting, narrow minded, ill informed letter, written by someone who does not seem to know the difference between a Motorhome and a caravan.

If I don’t receive an apology I and many others on various forums will seriously consider leaving your organisation, and that would be a shame.

Times are changing many campsites now cater for more or as many Motorhomes than caravans, and like it or not most of these Motorhomers enjoy responsible and considerate wild camping, not Scott Curries version of wild camping.

I would be pleased if you published this letter, but somehow I don’t reckon you want the other side of the story to be told. As for recommending that we always stay in campsites, I think I know why you would recommend that, hence your obvious bias in printing such a letter in the first place.

Yours sincerely


And here’s the letter.

View attachment 81874
Plenty of better clubs around , dump them
 
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