Countryside (Scotland) Act 1967

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1967 c. 86


Countryside (Scotland)Act 1967

1967 CHAPTER 86

An Act to make provision for the better enjoyment of the Scottish countryside, for the establishment of a Countryside Commission for Scotland and for the improvement of recreational and other facilities; to extend the powers of local planning authorities as respects land in their districts; to make financial provision with respect to the matters aforesaid; and for connected purposes.

[27th October 1967]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

I The Countryside Commission for Scotland

Part I

The Countryside Commission for Scotland

S-1 The Countryside Commission for Scotland.

1 The Countryside Commission for Scotland.

(1) There shall be established a Countryside Commission for Scotland (in this Act referred to as ‘the Commission’) who shall exercise the functions conferred on them by this Act for the provision, development and improvement of facilities for the enjoyment of the Scottish countryside, and for the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty and amenity thereof.

(2) In the exercise of their functions the Commission shall have due regard to the need for the development of recreational and tourist facilities and for the balanced economic and social development of the countryside.

(3) The Commission shall consist of such number of members not exceeding fourteen, as the Secretary of State may from time to time determine, and the members shall, in accordance with subsection (4) below, be appointed by the Secretary of State, who may appoint one of them to be chairman.

(4) The Commission shall be comprised of—

(a ) persons appointed after consultation with such associations of local authorities as appear to the Secretary of State to represent local planning authorities;

(b ) persons appointed after consultation with such organisations as appear to the Secretary of State to be representative of countryside interests; and

(c ) such other persons as the Secretary of State may think fit.

(5) The provisions of Schedule 1 to this Act shall have effect with respect to the Commission.

(6) The Secretary of State may, after consultation with the Commission, give to them directions of a general character as to the exercise of their functions, and the Commission shall give effect to any such directions.

(7) In Part III of Schedule 1 to the House of Commons Disqualification Act 1957 (which specifies offices the holders of which are disqualified under that Act) as it applies to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, there shall be inserted at the appropriate point in alphabetical order the entry ‘Chairman of the Countryside Commission for Scotland’.

S-2 The countryside.

2 The countryside.

(1) In this Act ‘the countryside’ means the areas which are for the time being designated as such on maps prepared and approved by the Secretary of State in accordance with subsections (2) to (5) below, or as amended by him under subsection (6) below, or, before the approval of those maps, such areas as are described in subsection (8) below.

(2) The Secretary of State shall, as soon as may be after the passing of this Act, prepare maps relating to the areas of local planning authorities designating the parts of those areas which are to be treated as the countryside for the purposes of this Act, and in preparing those maps he shall consult with the Commission and the local planning authorities concerned and shall have regard to the following considerations—

(a ) whether land is of a rural character or otherwise;

(b ) in the case of extensive areas of open land within burghs or other centres of population, the suitability of that land for open-air recreation;

(c ) the indications as to the use or proposed use of land given by a development plan for the time being in force by virtue of the Act of 1947;

(d ) whether land is for the time being treated as part of the countryside by virtue of subsection (8) below.

(3) The Secretary of State shall refer the maps mentioned in subsection (2) above to the Commission and to the local planning authorities concerned, who may make representations to him with respect thereto.

(4) Having considered any representations made to him under subsection (3) above the Secretary of State may make such amendments, if any, to the maps as he considers appropriate and may from time to time approve those maps.

(5) The Secretary of State shall complete his approval of all the maps referred to in subsection (2) above within one year from the passing of this Act or within such longer period (not exceeding two years from the passing of this Act) as may be specified in an order made by statutory instrument by him, and any such statutory instrument shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(6) After the completion of his approval of the maps in accordance with subsection (5) above the Secretary of State may, having regard to any changes in the circumstances affecting the areas concerned, from time to time prepare and approve amendments to those maps, and the provisions of subsections (2) to (4) above with regard to the preparation and approval of maps shall, apart from any provision as to time, apply with any necessary modifications to the preparation and approval of those amendments.

(7) Every local planning authority shall make available for inspection by the public at all reasonable hours and without charge copies of the maps relating to their district which have been approved by the Secretary of State under this section, including any amendments of those maps which have been approved as aforesaid, and copies thereof, including reproductions on such scale as may be appropriate, shall be made available by them on sale to the public at a reasonable cost.

(8) Before the approval by the Secretary of State of maps relating to an area, ‘the countryside’ in relation to that area means the landward areas of counties and the areas of small burghs containing according to the last published census a population of less than 5,000 inhabitants, but excludes such areas or includes such other areas as the Secretary of State, having regard to the considerations mentioned in paragraphs (a ) to (c ) of subsection (2) above, may, after consultation with the Commission and the local planning authorities concerned, by order from time to time designate.

S-3 Duties of the Commission.

3 Duties of the Commission.

3. The Commission shall have the following duties—

a ) to keep under review all matters relating to the provision, development and improvement of facilities for the enjoyment of the countryside, the conservation and enhancement of its natural beauty and amenity and the need to secure public access to the countryside for the purposes of open-air recreation; and to consult with such local planning authorities and other bodies as appear to the Commission to have an interest in those matters
b ) to encourage, assist, concert or promote the implementation of any proposals with respect to those matters made by any other person or body, being proposals which the Commission consider to be suitable
c ) to exercise the functions relating to development projects or schemes conferred on them by section 5 below;
d ) to consult with local planning authorities regarding the exercise of their powers under section 48 below and from time to time to advise them thereanent;
e ) to advise the Secretary of State or any other Minister or any public body on such matters relating to the countryside as he or they may refer to the Commission or as the Commission may think fit.
S-4 Powers of the Commission.

4 Powers of the Commission.

4. The Commission shall have the following powers—

a ) where it appears to the Commission that it would assist them in the exercise of their functions, to establish promote or assist in the establishment of committees or other appropriate bodies, to promote or assist in the promotion of conferences or meetings, to participate in such committees, bodies, conferences or meetings, and to defray in whole or in part the expenses of participants;
b ) where it appears to the Commission that the provision, development or improvement of recreational or tourist facilities or the conservation or enhancement of the natural beauty or amenity of any area of the countryside involves special problems or requires the application of special professional or technical skill, on being so requested by any local planning authority concerned, to place at the disposal of the authority the services of officers or servants of the Commission on such terms as may be agreed with the authority and are approved by the Secretary of State;
c ) to carry out or commission the carrying out of such inquiries, investigations or researches, either on their own account or jointly with other persons, as the Commission may deem necessary or expedient for the purposes of their functions;
d ) to engage in any activity which they may consider appropriate for the purpose of educating and informing persons in the proper use of, and behaviour in, the countryside;
e ) to provide or assist in the provision of publicity and information services relating to the countryside, to places of beauty or interest therein or to the functions of the Commission;
f ) to make such charges for any of their services as they think fit;
g ) to make to any public body recommendations as to the making of...

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