Guided Fossil Walks Code of Practice

The Parish Council as owners of the Foreshore within the Parish of Charmouth grant permission to carry out fossil walks on and across its beaches. The beaches in question stretch from the “Vine Yard” below the head of Evans Cliff to the East (at the present fall) to Canary Ledges in the West “Black Ven”.

Permission is granted subject to the following conditions set out below:

  • That the Council reserves the right to withdraw its consent if the conditions set out below are not adhered to, if the policies in reference to fossil walks on its beaches are altered, or if the Council feels it necessary for any reason.

  • This Code of Practice is reviewed every 12 months.

  • The walk organiser/leader must hold an insurance indemnity for public liability, proof of which must be shown to the Council.

  • The Council will determine where the walk leader meets the clients when permission is granted.

  • Before any walk, health and safety instructions should be given to clients along with information about the Code of Responsible Fossil Collecting within the World Heritage Site.

  • That good practice should be carried out at all times in the use of appropriate tools.

  • That the walk leader and his/her clients should respect other users of the beach at all times.

  • That the walk leader and his/her clients should consider the status of the site.

  • Groups should be no more than 30 people per walk leader at any one time in the interest of both safety and value for money (with the exception of school parties who have their own staff to ensure staff to pupil ratio).

  • Walks should be carried out within a 3 hour window either side of low tide.

  • With regard to adverse weather, leaders should carefully consider the state of the sea, which can affect the height of the tide and the state of the cliffs in terms of rainwater, which causes landslides and rock falls.

Permission must be applied for in writing with proof of public liability insurance and is only valid on receipt of a confirmation letter from the Parish Council confirming meeting point etc.
Applicants should address applications to Clerk to the Council, Charmouth Parish Council, The Elms, St Andrews Drive, Charmouth, Dorset DT6 6LN.

March 2015