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Thread: HCC Guidelines

  1. #1

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    Just thought some might be interested, I have now got the final draft of the guidelines as required for caches placed on land owned or managed by Hampshire County Council Countryside Services.

    They are so close to those already applied by Geocaching, we have lost very little, if anything.

    • Ensure the cache container is clearly marked, stating that the content is harmless and giving the placers e-mail address or other contact method.
    • Only items that would be deemed safe and acceptable for an unaccompanied child to find should be placed in the cache.
    • No cache may be placed in such a way as to risk damage or disturbance to any Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) or Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM). Protect our heritage.
    • When placing a cache on a right of way, the onus is on the placer to seek the permission of the landowner.
    • No items of food or drink of any kind should be placed in the cache.
    • Caches must not be buried. Holes must not be dug in order to place a cache.
    • Caches must not be hidden in animal holes or runs.
    • Cache containers must not be placed inside a polythene bag.
    • Fences should never be crossed when placing or seeking a cache.
    • No caches should be of a commercial nature, either in location or content.
    • After placing a cache on countryside sites, the site manager must be informed to ensure that the cache does not compromise the management of the site.
    • Maintenance of the cache is the responsibility of the placer.
    • When leaving the cache site, after finding or hiding a cache, there must be no visual sign of disturbance.
    • For reasons of safety and security Hampshire County Council discourage geocaching on their land during the hours of darkness.
    • Please do not bring geocaching into disrepute, never drive your car anywhere other than on the highways and byways, and always park sensibly in approved places only.



    Bear in mind that these are only for HCC land, but obviously, they would make very reasonable guidelines for the whole of the UK, there is only one point missing which is that no caches should be placed in or an a dry stone wall, but Hampshire doesn't have any dry stone walls.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Progress&#33; Well done, T & J, and thanks for persevering with this&#33;

    Those guidelines seem absolutely fine to me - there&#39;s certainly nothing there that I would take issue with.

    Could you clarify a few minor points in there?

    quote:
    and giving the placers e-mail address or other contact method.
    /quote

    Would a url for geocaching.com or gagb.org.uk be an acceptable contact method? I&#39;m reluctant to give out personal contact information, and would prefer not to put one of my email addresses or phone numbers in caches. (I can set up an unlimited number of throwaway addresses, so it&#39;s not a problem - I&#39;m just curious).

    quote:
    When placing a cache on a right of way, the onus is on the placer to seek the permission of the landowner.
    /quote

    If the guidelines are for HCC land, then does this mean that we need to ask permission from HCC if a cache is on a right of way on their land, but don&#39;t need to ask their permission if it&#39;s anywhere else on their land?

    I don&#39;t mean to nitpick, I&#39;d just like to know.
    ​​Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light. (Dylan Thomas)​


  3. #3

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    I realise your&#39;e not nit-picking, no worry.

    An email address would suffice, I&#39;m sure, better that it is your email rather than GC.com though. Before all the trouble on the GC.com forums about the GAGB, we were going to issue a phone number for all members to put in their caches (to be used in the event of trouble only). Not sure if this will or will not happen now. :angry:

    Right&#39;s of way might be managed by HCC (I think all of those in Hampshire are) but the land they cross is actually owned by other persons. Therefore, it would be difficult for HCC to grant you any permission other than the normal use (passage ?) over those rights of way. Really, the permission of the land owner should be sought.

    Quite how you can find out who the land owner is, is another matter. No good asking HCC because they most likely won&#39;t be able to tell you. (Data Protection Act ?).

    Not a complete answer, but, I hope it helps.

    Please bear in mind that the guidelines have yet to recieve their final approval, but it is unlikely that much if anything will change.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  4. #4

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    Thanks, T & J, for the clarifications&#33;

    Re the rights of way, I missed the obvious - HCC are responsible for all rights of way in Hampshire, not just those on their land, so of course we&#39;re talking about permission from landowners other than HCC here.

    Re contact details, I&#39;ll just use throwaway addresses. I get so much spam and so many (foiled) viruses, together with a liberal sprinkling of crank mail, that I&#39;m almost paranoid about giving out contact info&#33;
    ​​Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light. (Dylan Thomas)​


  5. #5
    Paul G0TLG Guest

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    Huge well done to Tim and June: It&#39;s really good to see that the hassles of a few weeks back haven&#39;t stunted your enthusiasm for doing a great job on behalf of all of us...

    I sympathise - I recently gave up a voluntary job (that I loved doing) with a charity, because of the disproportionate amount of aggro caused by a small number of people. I&#39;m pleased that you&#39;re obviously made of sterner stuff than I was&#33;

    Paul G0TLG

  6. #6
    Team Paradise Guest

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    Well done indeed T&J and all others involved.

    One question...

    After placing a cache on countryside sites, the site manager must be informed to ensure that the cache does not compromise the management of the site.
    Will there be a process or email address or something for this, as I doubt it&#39;s very easy to find the &#39;site manager&#39;.

  7. #7
    washboy Guest

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    Well done, T&J

    At the risk of appearing to be pedantic ( ) I&#39;d like to seek clarification of a couple of points:

    [*]Only items that would be deemed safe and acceptable for an unaccompanied child to find should be placed in the cache.
    This needs fleshing out with examples of bad things and an indication of how young or old "child" is. I mean, a simple button/badge has a dangerous pin but I&#39;d trust an 8yr-old with one. A bag of marbles could be dangerous for a little child. I accept it should be common sense but not all cache placers are wise in the ways of littluns. I&#39;m not&#33; :unsure:

    [*]No caches should be of a commercial nature, either in location or content.
    I don&#39;t understand how any cache on HCC owned/managed land could be commercial in location. Agreed re content, though.

    All in all, I think the HCC conditions are fair and sensible.

    It would be good if a list of site managers could be sourced, indicating their respective site locations. That way, perhaps they could be contacted before placing caches. They might have valuable suggestions to make re placement, etc.

  8. #8
    marinor Guest

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    Excellent work T&J

    btw is there any truth in the rumour that Beagle2 is carrying a T&J MKIV for the first Mars cache?

  9. #9

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    Originally posted by Team Paradise@Jun 9 2003, 11:27 PM
    Well done indeed T&J and all others involved.

    One question...

    <snip>

    Will there be a process or email address or something for this, as I doubt it&#39;s very easy to find the &#39;site manager&#39;.
    If it is a park status, (as most large areas are) the will be a sign at the entrance/car park with a contact telephone number on it.

    Early on during the conversations about this, we did ask that there be a single email address or similar method of contact, but they are worried that it might become a major task for one contact point to handle. Once things have settled down perhaps it will work itself out.

    The reasoning behind the requirement to contact them was given to us by way of example. On HCC land there are two patches of a wild flower called a red-something-or-other, I think they said these are the only 2 patches in the whole of the UK.

    I wouldn&#39;t know the difference between the "red-something-or-other" and a daisy (other than the colour of course) and I&#39;m sure most cachers are the same. If an unknowledgeable cacher like me were to put a cache amongst, or close to, one of these small patches, the result would be a disaster.

    I know you didn&#39;t ask for the last bit, but thought it interesting.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  10. #10
    THE BRAMBLERS Guest

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    [QUOTE] Well done indeed T&J and all others involved.

    One question...

    Will there be a process or email address or something for this, as I doubt it&#39;s very easy to find the &#39;site manager&#39;. [QUOTE]


    Thank you Team Paradise, it certainly has been hard work what with drawing up guidelines, presenting them to various committees, organising the Winchester event, re-opening negotiations with Forest Enterprises and even finding time to reach 100 cache finds&#33; :

    With regard to your question, there aren&#39;t usually any telephone numbers on the site entrance boards. We are going to produce an HCC web page on geocaching and there will be links to all HCC countryside sites where there will be contact numbers.

    David and Debbie

  11. #11
    Chris n Maria Guest

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    Big Congratulations to all Involved

    Well done folks it is all looking really rather sensible and very constructive.

    A couple of question follow from this:
    Publicity: How will people know about these guidlines ?

    Approvals: How will these guidelines be adopted by the UK approver(s)?

    No agenda here - just wondering :unsure:
    Chris

  12. #12

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    Jun 2003
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    By Washboy
    At the risk of appearing to be pedantic ( ) I&#39;d like to seek clarification of a couple of points:
    No worry, this is constructive and so should not be seen as being pedantic.

    This needs fleshing out with examples of bad things and an indication of how young or old "child" is. I mean, a simple button/badge has a dangerous pin but I&#39;d trust an 8yr-old with one. A bag of marbles could be dangerous for a little child. I accept it should be common sense but not all cache placers are wise in the ways of littluns. I&#39;m not&#33; :unsure:
    I think this is more a case of covering "*ss". And quite reasonably too. I guess it really means things that are generally acceptable should be ok. Drugs (even aspirin) are a no-no as would be alcohol or explosives. I agree that it would be foolish to give the button/badge to a four month old and just as foolish to give a 6 year old a ciggarette lighter. However, it would be very dificult to make rules to cover every possible situation. On the whole, perhaps this is really aimed at the situation which might arise if a cache is accidentally found by unsupervised kids.

    The covering *ss bit is the reason for them discouraging caching at night. One of the officers read a cache page which warned about a dangerous situation, (cliff edge or similar) The first log said "Great cache to do at night". If HCC condone caching on their land, they must ensure that they do not condone a dangerous aspect of it.
    I don&#39;t understand how any cache on HCC owned/managed land could be commercial in location. Agreed re content, though.
    Initially we drew up the guidelines for presentation to HCC as suitable for the whole of the UK, so that wording is ours I&#39;m afraid, as is the dry stone walls mentioned earlier.

    All in all, I think the HCC conditions are fair and sensible.
    Thank you. I would also like to thank HCC for allowing publication of these guidelines before they are fully approved.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  13. #13

    Join Date
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    Originally posted by Tim and June@Jun 9 2003, 08:44 PM
    [*]When leaving the cache site, after finding or hiding a cache, there must be no visual sign of disturbance.

    First time I&#39;ve used a &#39;quote&#39; on this forum... Hope I&#39;ve got it right.

    Well done guys.

    Umm... has anyone got any suggestions as to how we get the stinging nettles to stand up again after we&#39;ve been crashing about in them for ten minutes looking for wild tupperware :P
    John
    Age and treachery will always triumph over youth and ability.

  14. #14

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    Umm... has anyone got any suggestions as to how we get the stinging nettles to stand up again after we&#39;ve been crashing about in them for ten minutes looking for wild tupperware
    If you had read between the lines you should have realised that you have to master the art of ho vering.. Upside down&#33;&#33;&#33; :wacko:
    Moss The Boss... Sorta

  15. #15

    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Hampshire, UK
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    Originally posted by Tim and June@Jun 9 2003, 08:44 PM
    I have now got the final draft of the guidelines as required for caches placed on land owned or managed by Hampshire County Council Countryside Services.

    They are so close to those already applied by Geocaching, we have lost very little, if anything.

    <snippage>
    T & J,

    For a while I thought that we&#39;d lost an awful lot , but now you&#39;re back here, and Mk4 bears are appearing, it looks like it was only a temporary setback.

    Good to see you back.

    (Oh, and thanks for all your hard work on our behalf.)
    One day my sigline will stop changing.
    Until then, it's "Lost in the woods? Not if you remembered to waypoint the car!!".

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