Litter and access on west Loch Lomondside by Nick Halls

On Monday I drove along the A 82 stopping at laybys & sites used for camping along

the Loch side. Most of the land is owned by Luss Estates who last year blamed campers

for the state of the country-side http://lussestates.co.uk/news/litter-problem-worsens-wild
-campers   Apart from the usual litter thrown from car traffic, which is ubiquitous

throughout Scotland, the laybys showed evidence offly tipping, some of it gross & use

as toilet stops.

 

Litter across the fence from the Auchentullich layby on land that appears owned by Luss Estates
Litter across the fence from the Auchentullich layby on land that appears owned by Luss Estates
Flytipping Auchentullich layby
Flytipping Auchentullich layby

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Traditional camping sites along the Loch side that will be included in the area covered

by the camping byelaws were generally quitelitter free, and the litter in evidence could

have been picked up  in five minutes. I got the impression that by laws are not

motivated by environmental concern but sociological considerations, and LL&TNP
have been pushed into implementing such an arrangement by residents rather than

visitors. I was struck by the fact that fly tipping material looked as if it was local rather

than imported, builders waste, refuse that could have been taken to a tip & farm waste

tossed over a fence [pretty common throughout rural Scotland].

 

 

 

Flytipping Auchentullich layby
Flytipping Auchentullich layby
Abandoned farm fence within what appears to be Luss Estates land
Abandoned farm fence within what appears to be Luss Estates land
Abandoned farm litter - you can see the source over the wall. Again this appears to be Luss Estates land
Abandoned farm litter – you can see the source over the wall. Again this appears to be Luss Estates land
Fly tipping stank A82
Fly tipping stank A82

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The visit to the head of Loch Long revealed the usual post winter mess of wind & tide

born rubbish [which seems to be being cleared by piling it in a heap half way down the

tidal zone.] As this is the only marine salt marsh habitat in the NP it struck me that
environmental concerns must be low on the agenda of the LL&TNP Board.

 

 

 

 

Rubbish Head Loch Long
Rubbish Head Loch Long
A half-completed attempt to collect rubbish at Loch Long. When campers bundle up litter the Park calls it irresponsible
A half-completed attempt to collect rubbish at Loch Long. When campers bundle up litter the Park calls it irresponsible

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From my perspective litter is litter from whatever source it derives, and that left by even

the most degenerate of campers is trivial compared with that derived from other

sources. If litter matters then it is hard to understand why so much attention is focused

on roadside campers as they are probably the least of the NP problems if the

environment matters. A visit to NP facilities at Firkin Point revealed that the toilets
are closed until 31 March & the car park at 16.00. This suggests that the NP has very

little notion of what offering a service to visitors means. The message I get is that the

NP sees its responsibilities as restricting services, limiting access to facilities &

addressing any problem through exclusion.

 

 

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I have visited most of the National & regional Parks in Western Europe the contrast is

stark – visitors from abroad must be pretty confused if they arrive at Glasgow Airport

then visit the NP & discover it is being operated like a town park, with closed facilities,

restricted opening hours, litter everywhere & park rangers evolving into enforcement

officers for bye laws that seem to contradict the very purpose of a NP.

 

 

 

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