Outdoor access

Exemption and Access Orders

Exemption Orders

Where an outdoor event may affect the public taking access in that locality, an exemption order may be required from us to exempt that area of land for the duration of the event and possibly periods immediately before and after the event.

We can exempt areas of land from access rights for short periods of time to enable admission charges for events such as sporting events, Highland games or fetes or for other reasons such as public safety or security.

Not all events require an exemption order. If the event is unlikely to obstruct a known public access route a temporary advisory note or diversion could divert people around the area without causing significant inconvenience. You should consider how serious the risk of non payment is likely to be as it may be possible to manage admission by charging for parking, a programme or some other service.

Rights of way are not covered by exemption orders.

People normally show respect for short term events such as open air weddings or funeral services and a public access exemption should not be necessary.

Current Exemption Orders

The Highland Council order (UCI Mountain Bike World Series) 2024

Notice is hereby given under section 11(9) of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 (“the Act”) that on 2 April 2024 the Highland Council made The Highland Council (UCI Mountain Bike World Series) Order 2024 (“the Order”) under section 11(1) of the Act.

The effect of the Order is to exempt the DH Track, 4X Course, Trials Areas, Car Parks and Nevis Range Curtilage at the Nevis Range, Fort William from the access rights which would otherwise be exercisable in respect of the land by virtue of Part 1 of the Act. Maps of the exempted areas can be viewed at The Highland Council Service Point, Charles Kennedy Building, Achintore Road, Fort William, PH33 6RQ (Monday to Friday 9.30am to 12.30pm). Rights of way are not affected by this Order.

The purposes for which the Order is made are to reduce any risks to the public, staff and competitors; to reduce any risks to security during preparations for and during the event; and to allow a charge to be levied for admission.

The Order will take effect from 8am on 1 May 2024 until 8pm on Sunday 5 May 2024.

Stewart D Fraser

When you need to apply

Where an exemption order is for a period of less than 6 days the order can be processed by us. You should make your application to us at least four weeks before your event.

If the application is for 6 days or more

Where the application relates to periods of six days or more we must follow a formal consultation procedure and the application must be referred to Ministers for approval. You will therefore need to submit your application to us at least 16 weeks before your event.

Access Orders

A Local Authority may use compulsory powers to delineate paths on land in respect of which access rights exercisable. A local authority, where they consider it impracticable to delineate a path by agreement under section 21 of the Act, may make an order (a 'path order') delineating it under section 22 of the Act. The local authority may make a path order only if they consider, having regard to the rights and interests of the owner of the land over which the proposed path passes and persons likely to exercise access rights on or over the land, it appropriate to do so.

The Highland Council (The Peffery Way at Mill Street, Dingwall) Path Order 2021

The Highland Council (The Peffery Way at Mill Street, Dingwall) Path Order 2021 was confirmed by Scottish Ministers on the 31 January 2023.

Confirmation Letter from Scottish Ministers

Copy of The Highland Council (The Peffery Way at Mill Street, Dingwall) Path Order 2021