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(1)Where it appears [F1to Scottish Natural Heritage as respects any land in Scotland [F2, to the National Park authority for any National Park, as respects any land in the National Park] or] to [F3a general or district planning] authority, as respects any land in their area which is or which gives or forms part of access to open country,—
(a)that it is requisite that the public should have access to that open country for open-air recreation; and
(b)that in the circumstances it is expedient that for that purpose the land should be acquired by [F4 Scottish Natural Heritage [F5, the National Park authority] or, as the case may be, the general or district planning authority],
[F6Scottish Natural Heritage or, as the case may be,] the authority . . . F7 may, . . . F7 acquire the land by agreement, whether by way of purchase, feu, lease or excambion [F8or, with the consent of the Secretary of State, acquire the land compulsorily: provided that the authority may not acquire the land compulsorily unless it is impractable to obtain such access by an access agreement or an access order.].
(2)[F9Scottish Natural Heritage [F10, a National Park authority] or, as the case may be, a general or district planning authority] may carry out on land acquired by [F11it or] them for the purposes of this section, and for the time being held by [F11it or] them for those purposes, such work as [F12it or] they may consider requisite for providing convenient means of access to the land or otherwise for the said purposes.
(3)While land acquired by [F13Scottish Natural Heritage [F14, a National Park authority] or, as the case may be, a general or district planning authority] under this section is held by [F15it or] them for the purposes thereof, it shall be the duty of [F16Scottish Natural Heritage or] the authority so to manage the land as to give to the public access for open-air recreation to so much thereof as appears to [F16Scottish Natural Heritage or] the authority to be practicable, having regard to the nature of the different parts of the land, to anything done thereon which may result in danger to the public or to persons employed thereon unless public access to the land or to adjoining land is restricted, and to all other relevant circumstances.
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