Previous Events

An introduction to the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 – 20 years on!

Thursday 22nd February 2024 – online 1pm – 2.30pm

2023 was the 20th anniversary of Scotland’s ground-breaking outdoor access rights and our partners at Forestry & Land Scotland (FLS) are offering their in-house introductory workshop on the Act to SOAN members.

If you:

  • Are new to a role involving outdoor access management;
  • Are delivering active travel projects but need to know a bit more about access rights;
  • Have been involved in the sector for a while but need a refresher…

….this session is for you!

Scotland has unique and progressive rights of access to land for the public, but we know they can be tricky to navigate. In this online session, originally developed for FLS staff, we’ll be celebrating, clarifying and chatting about access law from the perspective of land management, including some reflections on health, safety and wellbeing.

We’ll also be thinking about some activities that were barely getting going 20 years ago – you could say that we’re likely to ‘drone’ on about a wide variety of ‘electrifying’ topics (other puns are available)!

We had a very Successful SOAN Networking Event and AGM

AGM Minutes Available to view here:

People make Paths

Engaging communities in the management and development of community path networks

Meaningful engagement with the local community is fundamental to the success of paths projects. It helps to create a sense of ownership and can inspire local volunteers to get involved in improving their walking, cycling, wheeling and riding network.

This event will look at how we can work with and enable community groups to develop and deliver projects, whether for active travel or recreation. There’ll be an opportunity to hear about successful projects and benefit from ‘lessons learnt’ along the way. Afternoon workshops will provide a forum for discussion and learning, with topics including path funding and the volunteer experience. There will also be a session focused on Core Paths Plan reviews and how to engage communities in this process. A full programme will follow shortly.


Each attendee chooses two out of four topics, each workshop is run twice.  

Workshop Descriptions

 Funding for community path projects, an overview of identifying sources of funding for community path projects. Session led by Tom Whalley from Paths for All’s Community Path Team.

Community path groups from a volunteer’s perspective, Representatives from Blairgowrie and Rattery Access Network will provide an overview of what it’s like to be part of a volunteer path group. What they gain from taking part and what challenges they and their group face.

Mapping Scotland’s paths in partnership with communities, Ramblers Scotland’s Scottish Paths Map currently has around 42,000 miles of paths which are now being checked (and added to) by 400 volunteers. We’ll explore the potential uses of the data and give examples of how communities and access authorities have already engaged with the map for their own purposes using our tools and systems. This includes mapping paths for active travel connections, creating new routes and highlighting inequalities in path provision.

Core paths reviews, next steps and how to engage the community, in this process Core paths Plan reviews, next steps and how to engage the community in this process. This session was delivered by Tony Masson from West Lothian Council and Malcolm Combe (please note that this workshop is only available during session 1).

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