Aberdour Silver Sands is one of Fife’s most visited beaches, with thousands of people enjoying it for a day out and more each year.
The number of visitors enjoying Fife’s beaches and outdoors has increased significantly in the past few years and Aberdour Silver Sands is no exception. In 2022, Fife Coast and Countryside Trust (FCCT) recorded days when over 5,000 people descended on this beauty spot. This volume of visitors creates significant challenges, even when people use the site responsibly which unfortunately is not always the case.
Following the challenges of 2022, FCCT has worked closely with Fife Council, the Aberdour Community Council, and local Elected Members to identify a suite of interventions aimed at making Aberdour Silver Sands safer and more enjoyable for everyone to visit. This includes some cautious provision for those wishing to stay overnight in motorhomes with the designation of bays that may be used on a first come, first served basis.
This will hopefully encourage the local community to see motorhome users as a positive opportunity for businesses in the area, as well as encouraging those in the motorhome community, through newly installed signs, to be respectful of the area and environment that they are enjoying.
Following consultation with communities, landowners, and stakeholders, FCCT have developed a plan to accommodate up to 11 vehicles overnight and will be implementing a system of management used elsewhere in Fife. At present, no parking charges are to be introduced, but FCCT staff will be on hand to advise and oversee the new rules. This has all been made possible through partnership working between FCCT and Fife Council’s Environment and Building Services Department.
FCCT’s Head of Conservation & Engagement, Sarah-Jane Latto, explains: “We are thrilled at the number of people who now come from far and wide to enjoy the beauty of Fife’s outdoors, as well as those who have discovered the many benefits of time in the outdoors and now make regular use of the numerous sites that we manage.
“We are eager to remind people that the freedoms we enjoy in Fife thanks to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code come with responsibilities – particularly to be respectful of others and leave no trace or negative impact on the places that we share.
“Aberdour Silver Sands is a particularly beautiful part of Fife’s coastline, but by no means the only one. Unfortunately, on occasion in the coming months it may be overcrowded, and we would encourage members of the public to explore other sites if this is the case. For our part, we will do everything in our power to ensure a safe and enjoyable summer season for all.”
Councillor Altany Craik, Fife Council’s Spokesperson for Finance, Economy & Strategic Planning said “We have worked hard to be attentive to the various needs of the local community and those making use of Aberdour Silver Sands. FCCT and colleagues in Fife Council have worked hard to develop solutions to some of the problems experienced in this location and I am grateful to them for being responsive to issues as they have been raised by colleagues on the Community Council on behalf of constituents in this area.”