Whats The Legal Definition Of Camping?

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PDA1

Settler
Feb 3, 2011
646
3
Framingham, MA USA
If you really want to know, search for the ban on camping in parts of the Loch Lomond National Park.
There, thast wasn't difficult was it? Now troll off:)
 

Lister

Settler
Apr 3, 2012
991
0
33
Runcorn, Cheshire
I could be wrong here but I don't think wild camping is actually illegal, but to camp without the landowners permission is trespass, not a law but a civil offence.
Unless it's on the Railway*, in which case, under the Railways Act, it is a criminal offence :p

* Term "Railway" includes all parts of the railway infrastructure including stations, tunnels, depots and outhouses/signalboxes.
 
Where I used to live in Southend there are signs at Hadleigh Castle which state that its private land and that camping is prohibited, yet of course you can go walking over there whenever you feel like it. So Im guessing, if it falls down to civil law, that what constitutes camping is therefore down to the landowners discretion?
 

fishfish

Full Member
Jul 29, 2007
2,352
3
48
wiltshire
but to camp without the landowners permission is trespass, not a law but a civil offence.
i believe under an act of parliament (so not law) there must be intent to commit an offence to be tresspass,ie criminal damage or theft,and if i remember right the criminal justice act was the said act. also as a civil matter the police have no juristiction over this matter,they can only get involved if an offence againt an act of parliament,statute or common law has taken place ie public order ,swearing or acting in a manner as perscribed by the public order act,an assault,theft or criminal damage. the police can be asked by the land owner to enforce a court order to remove you,but given the fact that a camper will be gone within 24 hours makes it unlikely that a land owner would bother with civil proceedings. Dont be supprised if the police do try to provoke you so as to be able to remove you from your chosen place of rest,it is a common practice.if you do get nicked remember:

You will be asked to give the police your name and
address and your date of birth - you don’t have to
give any details, but it may delay your release.
They also have the right to take your fingerprints,
photo and non-intimate body samples (a saliva
swab, to record your DNA). These will be kept on
file, even if you are not charged, but if you later
sue the police you should try to get them
destroyed.
The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994,
removed the traditional ‘Right to Silence’.
However, all this means is that the police/
prosecution can point to your refusal to speak to
them, when the case comes to court, and the
court may take this as evidence of your guilt. The
police cannot force you to speak or make a
statement, whatever they may say to you in the
station. Refusing to speak cannot be used to
convict you by itself. I reckon the best policy if
you want to get off is to remain silent. The best
place to work out a good defence is afterwards,
with your solicitor or witnesses, not under
pressure in the hands of the cops. If your refusal
to speak comes up in court, I think the best
defence is to refuse to speak until your solicitor
gets there then get them to agree to your
position. You can then say you acted on legal
advice.
If you are arrested under the Terrorism Act 2000,
the police can keep you in custody for longer. They
have already used this against protestors and
others to intimidate them. Remember being
arrested is not the same as being charged.
Keeping silent is still the best thing to do in
police custody.

If you are arrested the police will trawl the net and use
information they find on social networking sites etc. So
if you boast about things or post pictures this is doing
the cops job for them. They will also be able to see who
your online friends are.
 
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i believe under an act of parliament (so not law) there must be intent to commit an offence to be tresspass,ie criminal damage or theft,and if i remember right the criminal justice act was the said act. also as a civil matter the police have no juristiction over this matter,they can only get involved if an offence againt an act of parliament,statute or common law has taken place ie public order ,swearing or acting in a manner as perscribed by the public order act,an assault,theft or criminal damage. the police can be asked by the land owner to enforce a court order to remove you,but given the fact that a camper will be gone within 24 hours makes it unlikely that a land owner would bother with civil proceedings. Dont be supprised if the police do try to provoke you so as to be able to remove you from your chosen place of rest,it is a common practice.
If you are civil with police (or any landowner who happened by you) I very much doubt you'd have a concern. Most police couldn't be bothered to do the paperwork for such a petty thing. Besides, I wasn't asking this with the intention of actually pitching up a tent on someone elses land - I was just intregued as to whether the law is actually defined as to what camping is.
 

Shewie

Mod
Mod
Dec 15, 2005
24,260
18
44
Yorkshire
To camp on private land without permission is prohibited and therefore classed as trespass and therefore a civil offence.

Mentioned here

Like I said though, I'm probably wrong as civil law certainly isn't one of my strong points :)
 
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robin wood

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Oct 29, 2007
3,054
1
derbyshire
www.robin-wood.co.uk
bottom line is if you are trespassing it makes no difference whether you are walking standing or lying down in a bivy or a tent the landowner has the right to ask you to leave and if you choose not to he has the right to use the minimum force required to remove you. That may mean picking the corner of your bivy and dragging you off his land. If he uses more force than the minimum required he commits an offense. If you choose to leave without bother and have caused no damage then no offense has been committed.

Now if it is land where you have right of passage eg a public footpath or access land that generally means you are allowed to come and go and travel through but it does not allow you to lie down and take a kip whether in a bivy or not, same rules apply as above. Many landowners such as the National Trust are taking a lighter hand on this sort of thing and in many places if you wildcamp at dusk and are away at dawn no one minds. We all know plenty of places though where folk come out for a party leave rubbish everywhere and get the whole idea a bad name so the laws need to be there to enforce when needed, it's a very sensible and very English system. If you think folk who sleep on park benches or on the streets do so without hassle you have clearly never tried it or talked to anyone who has.
 

boatman

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Feb 20, 2007
2,444
4
74
Cornwall
The discussion shows up the nonsense of the law as perceived on this forum. Civil offence, no arrest. In order for the police to be involved the stay must be prolonged which has to be for more than one night. All a landowner can do is to ask you to leave. Going equipped for camping/bivvying is being made to sound like going equipped for burglary. We have a thread "fear of the dark" when it seems we should have a thread "fear of going outside in case I break the law".
 

Lister

Settler
Apr 3, 2012
991
0
33
Runcorn, Cheshire
The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994,
removed the traditional ‘Right to Silence’.
That's one thing that has always (and probably still will) puzzled me:

You are told you have the right to remain silent and yet if you refuse to give evidence (say fingerprints, DNA samples, encryption passwords) you are done for refusal to give evidence. by being silent you are being non-existant, then you course you have the whole "right to privacy" crap, surely by forcing a DNA profile from you they are invading side right to privacy? I guess if you only have the right to vocal silence, it still puzzles me that they could do you for witholding encryption passwords....

re: Wild Camping, the phrase i tend to use when i want to do things and SWMBO say no is: "forgiveness is easier to get than permission" :lmao:
 

cbr6fs

Native
Mar 30, 2011
1,620
0
Athens, Greece
After a bit of searching i found this.
http://www.go4awalk.com/ask/wildcamping3.php

Article 6 states:

6 Camping

(1) No person shall knowingly use any vehicle, including a caravan or any structure other than a tent for the purpose of camping on the access land or land set out for the use or parking of vehicles except on any area which may be set apart and indicated by notice as a place where such camping is permitted.

(2) No person shall knowingly erect a tent on the access land for the purpose of camping:

(a) in any area listed in Schedule 2 to these byelaws;

(b) within 100 metres of any public road or in any enclosure.

(3) No person shall camp in a tent on the same site on the access land for more than two consecutive nights, except on any area which may be set apart and indicated by notice as a place where such camping is permitted.
So to me it seems that the main problem is not sleeping but the erection of a tent.

Of course what is classified as a tent will be open to interpretation, i don't think many judges would know the difference between a tent, bivvy or tarp setup.
 

British Red

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Dec 30, 2005
25,534
404
Mercia
After a bit of searching i found this.
http://www.go4awalk.com/ask/wildcamping3.php



So to me it seems that the main problem is not sleeping but the erection of a tent.

Of course what is classified as a tent will be open to interpretation, i don't think many judges would know the difference between a tent, bivvy or tarp setup.
That only applies to Dartmoor - you are quoting from the National Parks & Access to the Countryside Act, 1949 amendment Dartmoor Commons Act, 1985.
 

salad

Full Member
Sep 24, 2008
1,777
131
47
In the Mountains
The Laws over here in Germany are very specific as to what a tent is( this is banned in a forest).
This is great news for people who like to sleep in a hammock or under a bivi and tarp as these are not forbidden :) they also have a by law that says all people are allowed to "stop for a rest" ie "sleep" as long as you dont use a tent then yer fine
 

fishfish

Full Member
Jul 29, 2007
2,352
3
48
wiltshire
The Laws over here in Germany are very specific as to what a tent is( this is banned in a forest).
This is great news for people who like to sleep in a hammock or under a bivi and tarp as these are not forbidden :) they also have a by law that says all people are allowed to "stop for a rest" ie "sleep" as long as you dont use a tent then yer fine
hammocks all the way guys!
 

TreeCamper

Member
Sep 8, 2012
12
0
Cornwall UK
www.youtube.com
I have quite often been out for a walk with my hammocking gear for excersise and to get fit carrying it.

Then as it was getting dark found that I was lost and for safety reasons had to stay overnight;-)

As soon as it was daylight I could see the way out and LNT.
 

boatman

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Feb 20, 2007
2,444
4
74
Cornwall
I have found that sleeping under, for example, disused railway bridges over cuttings is like sleeping in a wind tunnel. better to find a hollow on the adjacent ground.
 
Mar 15, 2011
1,116
5
on the heather
I have heard 3“storeys” here.

1 Bivouacking is not camping.
2 Anywhere you lighting a fire can be classified as a camp.
3 No more than two consecutive nights in a bothy.


I recently met an RSPB officer who had just moved up from England, He asked me about the local area, birds, and where and where he couldn't go, I told him about the law of access in Scotland No1 all MOD land is off limits, I then told him about the Right to Rome Scotland Act, and our responsibilitys to the act, I also told him that as long as you don’t block any access with your car you can go more or less anywhere you like, He then said what if someone comes and tells me to move on or go, to which I replied “hey man this isn’t England if your not damaging any crops and someone comes and tells you to leave, then just tell them to go away”.

PS.I have never had any problems camping in Scotland.
PPS I also avoid official campsites like the plague.
 
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