A variety of Codes of Conduct have been produced locally and nationally which are relevant to our coast. This section contains links to the most important of these. Please also see our recent Wild Recreation Guide for the Berwickshire, Northumberland and North Tyneside coast which provides good practice guidelines and links to relevant codes of conduct.

Codes of Conduct are a popular mechanism for raising awareness of the potential impacts of activities and of influencing behaviour to reduce impacts on the natural environment. Codes of Conduct exist for a range of activities which are relevant to the Berwickshire and Northumberland coast.

Wildlife Watching and photography

The Northumberland Wildlife Watching Boating Code of Conduct

We are very fortunate in Northumberland to share our waters with an astonishing variety of marine life, including grey seals, whales, dolphins, porpoises and sea birds. These special animals draw many visitors each year and they are an important asset to local wildlife tourism businesses. The international significance of these species means they are also protected by various nature conservation laws so we must avoid disturbing them.

This code of conduct has been developed with boat operators to formalise the best practice they have developed over many years of operation, and through their experienced interaction with local marine life.

Scottish Marine Wildlife Watching Code

This Code applies to Scotland only. It aims to:

  • help minimise disturbance to marine wildlife
  • help you to enjoy watching marine wildlife
  • improve your chances of seeing wildlife
  • provide a standard for the wildlife watching industry
  • help you to stay within the law

A Guide to Best Practice For Watching Marine Wildlife

This guide serves to complement The Scottish Marine Wildlife Watching Code. Produced to provide more detailed information and advice on how to behave responsibly when watching marine wildlife.

The Scottish Outdoor Access Code

Provides detailed advice on responsible access to the outdoors

The Nature Photographer’s Code of Practice

Produced by the Royal Photographic Society

Bait Collection and Hand Gathering

NIFCA Blyth Estuary Mussel Collection Code of Conduct

NIFCA Periwinkle Gathering Code of Conduct

Angling Trust Bait Digging Code of Conduct


Other Recreational Activities

You, Your Canoe, and the Marine Environment

Produced by British Canoeing

The Outdoors Swimmer’s Code

Produced by the Outdoor Swimming Society

Lindisfarne NNR Rockpooling Code of Conduct

Produced by Natural England

Northumberland Coast AONB Codes of Conduct

The Northumberland Coast AONB has produced individual codes of conduct for:


Dog Walking

Horse riding


Powered Craft

Berwickshire Marine Reserve Codes of Conduct

A Guide to Recreational Activity in the Berwickshire Marine Reserve