SHOPS serving people who come camping in East Lothian could be asked to provide advice on local rules and guidelines when they make a sale.

Calls for a new campaign to raise public awareness over camping rules will be made at a meeting of East Lothian Council this week, after claims the county has the highest number of visitors per kilometre of coastline in Scotland.

Conservative councillor Craig Hoy will bring a motion to a virtual meeting of elected members asking for additional measure to support the work of the countryside rangers service in protecting the coastline and overseeing unprecedented numbers of campers.

Among changes proposed in the motion, which is seconded by Councillor Lachlan Bruce, leader of the opposition, are calls for businesses selling equipment to campers and shops serving them to provide advice to customers about local rules, alongside a public awareness campaign.

Mr Hoy, who is his party’s candidate for next year’s Scottish Parliament election in the county, also calls for a report to be brought to council by officers revealing the number of campers, caravans and mobile homes which visited during the summer season, along with the issues that were raised.

The county saw huge numbers of people travel to its coast over the summer, with large numbers wild camping at beaches and rural spots where there were no toilet facilities available.

Mr Hoy praised the efforts of the rangers but said the council had to prepare for the fact next year was likely to bring another wave of people seeking staycations .

He said: “With many people still not able to take their annual holiday, an increasing number will come on camping trips to coastal areas such as Yellowcraig and Tyninghame. This concentration at our coastal areas, cannot be sustained and action is needed before next summer.”

The Conservative Group is calling for new policies and possibly by-laws in the county.

Mr Hoy criticised the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, which covers camping, as vague and lacking clear definitions.

He called on the council to write to the Scottish Government and NatureScot asking for a review of the code.

He said: “The code is too vague, lacks clear definitions of different forms of camping and fails to offer specific rules to manage our coastal and countryside areas.

“Currently, anyone can say they are wild camping and pitch a tent almost anywhere, which is not sustainable.

“By bringing on board those who sell camping equipment, we would be able to ensure that the increasing number of novice campers fully understand how to camp responsibly.”