The Book of Trespass

Thought this looked interesting on the shelf so I took a punt on it. Essentially this book is about land. More specifically, the author has stumbled upon the surprisingly interesting subject of who owns the land and who has access to it in the UK. The answer is not that many to both questions, at least as far as he is concerned. 

Having read his book, I am inclined to agree with him. I say he has stumbled across the topic but clearly this is a life long passion of his. He is clearly an outdoors type with clear sympathies with all manner of protest groups to the extent that you can almost smell the mustiness coming from the pages. I don’t mean that in a bad way. The book is exceptionally well researched and referenced. The legal research he must have had to look into would not have been for me. 

It is quite incredible how little land we as the public have access to. It becomes ever more heartbreaking when one considers what our landscape used to look like before we swarmed across it and that the last bastions of the wild are now the trophies of only a very exclusive few. It reminds me that we live in a very unequal society. The last page of the book made me almost tear up. 

It would be interesting to hear a balancing reply from the land owning perspective. In some ways this book was superbly and eloquently argued and yet I can’t help but think he lets himself down when he admits at least on 2 occasions to trespassing on properties in order to take class A drugs. This book needs to be taken seriously and that was perhaps a mis-step. Nevertheless, a powerful piece of writing and deserves to be listened to. Whether it will be or not is another matter. 

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