We currently use OpenStreetMap as the base map for the Scottish Path Map. OpenStreetMap is used by many online mapping services, including those provided by some Scottish Government agencies.
OpenStreetMap is built by a community of mappers that contribute and maintain data about roads, trails, cafes, railway stations, and much more, all over the world.
OpenStreetMap is not designed specifically as a tool to support walking, so its contributors simply map geographic features that exist on the ground.
This means that there may be geographical features present on the base map where access rights do not apply.
The Mapping Scotland’s Paths project has received generous funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
Project partners include Argyll & Bute Council, British Horse Society, Inverclyde Council, West Dunbartonshire Council, North Ayrshire Council, Renfrewshire Council, Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park, RSPB Scotland, Green Action Trust, Woodland Trust Scotland, Scottish Forestry, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park, Paths for All, ScotWays and NatureScot.
The project also draws on existing open-source data including Open Street Map© contributors.
In Scotland we have world-class rights of public access to most land and inland water thanks to the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003.
Everyone in Scotland has statutory rights of access, as long as these rights are exercised responsibly. Guidance on responsible access is given in Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
The Code has three main principles:
- Respect the interests of other people
- Care for the environment
- Take responsibility for your own actions.
This ScotWays list is a useful reminder of where Scottish access rights do not apply.
We regularly update this page as the project progresses. If you work for a partner organisation and would like more regular updates, please let us know and we will add you to our distribution list for regular email updates. We'll keep Ramblers Scotland members informed throughout the project.
If you have data which could contribute to the project across Scotland, we'd love to hear from you! Ideally, we will need data in a shapefile or other GIS format.
If you are a community group, please feel free to contact us to discuss ways in which we could potentially work together.
You can also receive our Mapping Scotland's Paths newsletter by emailing us.
Volunteering to assist with the Mapping Scotland’s Paths project will generally involve going out and about exploring your local area. You will be able to either gather information about paths which are in our network to make the data more robust and useful or capture new paths that have not previously been mapped.
We will be expanding the project and recruiting more volunteers at multiple points throughout 2021 and beyond.
If you are interested in getting involved, find out more information about the volunteering opportunities here.
Our project manager joined on a two-year contract in summer 2019. The first meeting of the Proof of Concept partners took place in early October 2019. The Proof of Concept dataset was completed by summer 2020, with the further roll-out across Scotland announced in August 2020.
Throughout 2021 we will be expanding our volunteer base to get more people involved in gathering data about their local path network.
With the extension due to furlough, the project is currently due to run until November 2021. The aim is for the project to continue beyond this date and work is underway to scope out Phase 2 of the project and to secure funding for this. We want to ensure a sustainable future for the database we’re creating.