Following the occasional seasonal over use, by motorhome and campervans, of some public car parks in Fife, the Fife Coast & Countryside Trust last year (2019) produced a consultation paper giving background information, identifying the issues, and providing proposals for the management of what they term "Freedom Camping".
The paper concentrated on the car parks at Kinsgsbarns, Elie Ruby Bay, and Craigmead, but it is thought that, if successful, similar management plans could be introduced in other locations.
The paper is a well thought out document, and the Trust are to be commended in that their proposals seek to provide effective management of motorhome and campervan overnight stays in Fife, rather than simply introducing a ban - sadly all too common in some other places.
The Paper can be downloaded here: Freedom-Camping-Options-Paper-on-Motorhome-Use-in-Fife.pdf
We have been in contact with the Trust's Head of Operations, this is what he has told us (on 17 June 2020):
"After the Options Paper was produced, we then went into consultation with local communities and other stakeholders. It was agreed that for Kinsgsbarns and Elie Ruby Bay that an overnight parking charge would be introduced (£10 per night), with Craigmead donations only. The charging process would be managed under the auspices of a Parking Charge Notice scheme. The operating model is self-financing with any income after costs are paid invested back into the accommodating areas. (Edit: We understand that the £10 fee will in fact be for 24hrs, not just overnight)
One area that is proving to be problematic is that the introduction of Elsan points as it has been suggested that this would be deemed as operating a Camp Site rather than facilitating safe overnight parking. Therefore we are in discussion with the Local Authority planning department however, this did not stop us putting in other measures to facilitate improved Overnight Parking for Motorhomes and Campervans.
For Kingsbarns we have regraded the carpark and will be installing 8 bays in the next 4 weeks, we have also invested into a new Public Toilet block with a dedicated toilet cubicle for Motorhomes and Campervans users. At Elie Ruby Bay the upper carpark has been regraded and we will be installing 5 bays in the next 4 weeks with access to the toilet block facilitated for Motorhomes and Campervans Users.
The proposals for Craigmead is to install approximately 5 post that identify suitable overnight parking spaces for Motorhomes and Campervans with access to the Public toilet Block from 08:30 – 18:00 (April – October).
It was our intention to have all this in place by the very latest mid-April unfortunately the Covid 19 Pandemic has stopped our plans. As with all other stakeholders FCCT are reliant on Scotland's route map through the crisis and have adopted phased approach in relation to the restrictions in place. Therefore, we are unsure of when we can get the scheme into operation however, we are committed to the proposals outlined in the Options Paper and will implement when its deemed safe to do so."
We will, of course, keep an eye on these developments and provide updates when we get any further details.