TV host Ben Fogle calls for wild camping changes
Broadcaster and adventurer Ben Fogle has called for a relaxation on wild camping restrictions in England amid concerns about access to private land.
Wild camping is allowed in most of Scotland and on Dartmoor in Devon but currently is illegal elsewhere in England and Wales without the landowner's consent.
The Countrywise presenter, who regularly camps throughout the UK, said the limitations were “unfair” and that there was “a lot to be said” for England following Scotland’s lead on the issue.
Camping magazine's editor, Iain Duff, caught up with Ben ahead of the Caravan, Camping & Motorhome Show 2017, where the broadcaster will be appearing. During a lengthy chat he spoke passionately about his belief that camping and enjoying outdoor life is key to bringing families closer together in the face of competition from technology like video games and social media.
But he also expressed concerns about legal constraints over access to land. He said: “My interpretation of the legalities is that you are quite restricted. The outdoor purist in me thinks that’s a bit unfair – because we should be able to go wherever we want. A lot of the UK is now privately owned or you have to stick to the paths, and before you know it, it’s going to be an entirely groomed country where everything is entirely managed.
“I know you’re not allowed to wild camp in much of England and I know you can in lots of Scotland and there is a lot to be said for that.”
Ben is a busy man and Iain met him in between trips to Egypt for a documentary and the next of his 'New Lives in the Wild' series in New Zealand.
The adventurer takes his adventures to extremes of the world that most people would not have the time, inclination or money to do. But he also is a big fan of family camping and outdoor life and a strong advocate for exploring the UK.
He will be flying the flag for camping at the Caravan, Camping & Motorhome Show at the NEC in February.
The show will help holiday-makers of all types to see new tents, camping gear, caravans and motorhomes ahead of their own spring and summer adventures.
Visit the show between 21 and 26 February 2017 at the NEC in Birmingham. You can win tickets with our sister title Caravan magazine too.
Enter our competition here for the chance to win one of 10 pairs of tickets for the show.
We will have more for you about Iain's interview with Ben very soon.