Cairngorms National Park

View to Braemar

Local Outdoor Access Forum

The Cairngorms Local Outdoor Access Forum is the statutory body that advises the Park Authority and others on matters relating to outdoor access. The Forum is made up of individuals representing land management, community interests, recreational users, public agencies.

The objectives and functions of the Forum are:

  •  To act as the local access forum for Cairngorms National Park and to undertake the functions of that body in terms of Section 25 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003;
  • To advise the Authority in the review of the Core Paths Plan;
  • To advise the Authority in the review of its Outdoor Access Strategy;
  • To advise the Authority and any other person or body consulting it, on the existence and delineation of rights of way and the exercise of access rights;
  • To promote responsible access and land management through assisting the Authority in publicising the Scottish Outdoor Access Code;
  • To promote discussion and the sharing of knowledge, awareness and good practice in outdoor access matters;
  • To support the provision of appropriate infrastructure that improves responsible access to the countryside for all; and
  • To offer advice that will assist in the resolution of outdoor access disputes.

View meeting papers, minutes and agendas

Who’s Who – Pen Portraits

Eric Baird – Community (Convener)

Eric is Head Ranger with Glen Tanar Charitable Trust Ranger Service, on Royal Deeside. At Glen Tanar, he works with a wide range of community groups, helping them to enjoy the outdoors responsibly.He also sits on the Council of the European Federation of National Parks and Protected Areas: this, he says, enables him to bring a broader perspective to access issues: something he has felt important since he first studied the topic internationally as a Winston Churchill Fellow in 1991.Whilst admitting that ‘he gets out less than he’d like to’, he does enjoy cycling the trails in and around Glen Tanar, canoeing on the Dee, and Nordic ski-ing in the full moon through the old forest of Glen Tanar.

Nick Cole – Community

I have been resident in Meigle since 1997 while I was serving with Tayside Police. Prior to that I was with the Scottish Office Home and Health Department. My early background was in the Army – Royal Signals, and when I left them after 15 years I joined the Metropolitan Police. I have always had a passion for the outdoors and have since early retirement been building up a small outdoor trekking and training business and also run the Paths for All health walking group based in Blairgowrie. That provides walking opportunities from a barely able up to very serious hill bagging and long distance trails. As a Winter Mountain Leader I organise the Blairgowrie Walking Festival, and help lead on the Angus Walking Festival. I am in the Southern half of the Park every week throughout the year and enjoy showing people around the various hills, glens and other localities. I am a member of the Perth and Kinross Outdoor Access Forum, and have been its convenor since it was established. I am committed to equal opportunities which includes fair sharing of access to the outdoors. I have had extensive experience of dealing with protracted access issues in particular those relating to paddle sports and fishing in the Perthshire area.

Peter Mackay – Recreation

I climbed my first Munro on Coronation Day and am still at it with the help of mountain bikes. I started ski touring as a teenager with a circuit of four of the main Cairngorm tops and have pottered on skis ever since. In the last 25 years my wife and I  have made  independent  trips kayaking and hill walking in Greenland ( half a dozen times) and Prince William Sound in Alaska (last one in 2007) and I paddle or scull on Loch Insh daily. I was on the SNH Board as the recreation representative at the time of the access and national parks legislation, and more recently was the lead editor of the 5th edition of Scotways `  “Scottish Hill Tracks” and am the Scotways local representative in Badenoch. We live in Kincraig.

Ruaridh Ormiston – Community

Ruaridh was born and bought up Newtonmore and Strathmashie and has always been interested in the outdoors. Since 1992 he has run the Newtonmore Riding Centre, pony trekking pioneers since 1952. Frequently involved in film and television work the centres ponies have been the star of progammes and adventures following old drove roads. He also farms 350 acres of land throughout Badenoch and Strathspey involving Highland Cattle, Highland ponies and conservation projects. He is also an engineer in the oil industry.

Trevor Thornley – Community

Trevor is a charity trustee and active volunteer with the Dava Way Association; the association improves, maintains and promotes the Dava Way, a multi-use route running between Grantown-On-Spey and Forres that is one of Scotland’s Great Trails. During an extensive career in the Royal Air Force, Trevor spent a number of years as a member of the RAF Kinloss Mountain Rescue Team. He has climbed many of the Scottish mountains and recently discovered the joys of mountain biking.

Vicky Hilton – Land Manager

Vicky is currently the Countryside Manager for The Crown Estate, at Glenlivet Estate, Tomintoul. Previously she has worked as a countryside ranger at various locations across Scotland for both the National Trust for Scotland and private estates. In her free time she is a keen dog walker, mountain biker and cross country skier and occasional horse rider. Through this variety of experience Vicky has an all-round understanding of access from both a land management perspective and as a recreational user.

Anne-Marie Nuttall – Recreation

Anne-Marie has been exploring Scotland’s mountains since 1985. She is a lecturer in physical geography at the University of the Highlands and Islands, where she specialises in glaciers and their interactions with climate and the landscape. Whenever possible she likes to be out in the hills, either walking, climbing, ski-touring, wild camping, mountain biking or teaching students about the natural environment.



Please note that new members updates are pending.

Do you have any other questions?


Doug Stewart, Outdoor Access Officer, tel: 01479 870533