A warning has been issued to businesses using bothies
The Mountain Bothies Association (MBA) has issued a statement reminding commercial businesses that they should not be using bothies overnight.
“We are concerned about an increasing number of commercial businesses (guided tours, adventure holidays etc.) using or intending to use bothies that we maintain,” said the MBA in a recent press release. “There are a number of reasons why such use could be damaging to our interests and to legitimate bothy users and we believe that it could affect the sustainability of the bothy network.”
The organisation has warned that there have been a number of occasions when a bothy owner has threatened to close their shelter due to over exploitation by a business. It also says that there have been incidents when legitimate bothy users have been made to feel unwelcome, inconvenienced or even refused entry when commercial groups have been in residence.
The MBA added: “Our volunteers who maintain the bothies, not unreasonably, feel aggrieved to know that their hard work is contributing to the profits of a business that probably does not support our organisation in any way.”
The organisation points out those businesses are fine to use bothies for daytime visits or to seek shelter in the event of a genuine emergency.
The MBA is a charity that maintains around 100 cottages, huts and similar buildings throughout the wilder parts of Scotland, England and Wales for use as open shelters for walkers and other outdoor enthusiasts. All work is undertaken by volunteers and financed by membership fees, donations and legacies.