Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club


Scottish Score Championships

Image of the Dalkeith Park map

Dalkeith Country Park

Sun 21st Nov 2021

Info updated: 23rd Nov
Type of event: Regional, Score
Type of terrain: Parkland, Woodland


Provisional results are here

ORGANISER'S COMMENTS - Tyler Morrison writes:  It was third time lucky for the Scottish Score Championships and we were treated to a day of fine November weather. The courses were well enjoyed by all and there was little evidence of the very recent new out of bounds area having had any impact on competitors’ enjoyment of the day and few would have realised the 'excitement' in organizing and planning over the last fortnight.
Thank you to the whole ESOC team of volunteers who made the day run so smoothly.  And finally, it was all well worth it to see such a great turnout - thank you to everybody who came along and well done to the new Scottish Score Champions.

CONTROLLER'S COMMENTS from Peter Halling: I hope you all enjoyed the event – at least the weather should have helped!  We did suffer a bit from the late added restrictions imposed by the park. A large SSSI of oak woodland in the NE had always been out of bounds, but we had permission to cross it via one path, connecting in the N with a second bridge over the River North Esk. This made it possible to choose loops using both bridges to connect controls. We also lost a few controls in areas to the S of the SSSI, which meant we calculated it might just be possible to collect all the controls – in fact one person managed this on each of the 60 min and 70 min courses.

There was a mix of opinions about the choice to have all controls with equal point value. I had first suggested this possibility to Martin, based on experience at a Score Champs at Dollar many years ago which used the same policy. As a competitor there, I found it particularly hard to select which controls to take – many different loops looked equally good. This is in contrast with many score courses, where “head for the high point values first, then see what time is left” seems to pay off. Certainly my impression on the day at Dalkeith was that the system produced a large number of different choices of control order, which is what gives score events their special nature.

For the 70 min course we needed controls in the urban section to get the required minimum length. Because of the different map scales for the park and the urban, it would be hard to make correctly a close call decision on whether to prioritise controls in the park or the urban. So to prevent one bad early decision ruining someone’s race, I ruled that it needed to be obvious what was the right strategy if you studied the map for a few seconds. There were clearly more points to be scored by doing a loop in the town, and I think most people did this.

Thanks to Martin Caldwell for all his planning work, including finding some nice control sites, and making the necessary last minute changes up to the map printing deadline. And thanks to Tyler Morrison for a calm and smooth job as Organiser, even coping with an enforced change to the Start location at less than a week’s notice.

General Information

Last minute Final Details. Please read these in conjunction with the information already on this web item (if you should happen to notice any slight differences then the information on the attached document should be taken as correct). 

The start times were self selected and are already shown on Fabian4

COVID 19: You should not attend the event if you are showing any symptoms of Covid 19 even though you have pre-entered. You should also not attend if you have specifically been asked to quarantine or self-isolate.  The event will be managed to take account of all Government.   Additionally, the event will be run in accordance with Scottish Orienteering Association (SOA) Guidelines around social distancing and hand sanitising so please:
- do not arrive too early at the call up area (no more than about 10 minutes before your start time);
- keep a 1m distance from others outwith your household;
- use the hand sanitiser provided at the Start and Download.
These extra precautions are only required during your ‘race’ and in what the SOA defines as the 'field of play'.  For this event the field of play will be from the time you enter the car parking field until you download after your run.  THOSE WHO ARE ESPECIALLY VULNERABLE: If you have such vulnerabilities that require extra precautions, you are advised to take responsibility for implementing these extras.

BRITISH ORIENTEERING PARTICIPANT CODE OF CONDUCT: All competitors are asked to read and abide by the British Orienteering Participant Code of Conduct in relation to Covd.  Anyone making an entry on behalf of someone else should advise them of this.

The 2021 SCOTTISH SCORE CHAMPIONSHIPS will be run in accordance with the SOA Rules and Guidelines for the Scottish Score Championships. Eligibility criteria to be a Scottish Champion are listed below under Course Information.

Terrain: Dalkeith Country Park is managed parkland, but with some wilder wooded parts. There is an extensive path and track network. The park is mostly pretty flat though there are steep slopes with dangerous crags in places, especially along the river banks, with some contour detail and a number of open fields surrounded by fences. The park is divided in two by the larger of the 2 rivers in the Park, the North Esk. The South Esk also flows through the easternmost part of the park and these rivers join in the far north east of the park.  The rivers must only be crossed at the bridges.   The Park has many visitor attractions which are out of bounds to orienteers and will be marked as such on the map.

Map: The park was originally mapped by Peel Land Surveys in 2007 and updated in 2014 by Stirling Surveys. Some recent corrections have been made owing to changes to paths and fences.  A small part of the Dalkeith town centre is on the 70 minute Score map.  The scale of the map is yet to be confirmed.

Course Maps and Control Descriptions: Course maps will be printed on waterproof paper.  It is still to be confirmed if all control descriptions are on the maps and/or whether loose control descriptions will be provided. 

Yellow Course Maps: These will be available for competitors to collect in the call up area near the entrance to the first start box.  

Call up and Warm Up:  On the edge of the parking field.

Timing: SI electronic timing will be used.  SIAC will be enabled.  If you don’t have your own dibber, these can be hired free of charge via the online entry system.  There will be a £30 charge if it lost. 

Toilets: Portable toilets will be available in the parking field.

Start, Finish and Download: All in or close to parking. 

Other Users: Dalkeith Country Park is very well used by the general public including tourists, other runners, horse riders and dog walkers although the numbers will depend on weather conditions on the day.  Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering. We need to maintain good relations with the park in order to have events here in the future.

Dogs: Dogs are allowed in the parking field and should be kept under close control at all times. 

Safety:  All competitors take part in this event at their own risk.  Note too that there are some steep slopes and crags close to rivers, please take care if your course takes you near these. Do not attempt to cross either of the main rivers except at the marked crossing points. 

There may be (or have recently been) some cows or other animals in fenced fields in the park. Please remember the risk of infection and wash hands well before eating (ensure juniors are reminded to do this too).

First Aid: Basic first aid can be provided by event officials with relevant certificates but we suggest you bring your own first aid supplies and, where possible, administer yourself. The nearest Accident and Emergency department is at the Royal Infirmary about 6 km away – follow signs for Edinburgh City Centre which will take you by the A7 right past the hospital entrance.

MEDICAL CONDITIONS: You have the option of downloading and completing this Medical Form. It could be life saving if the organisers are aware of any existing medical conditions in the event of an incident. You can leave it with the Organiser in a sealed envelope that will only be opened if required and destroyed after the event. If you can't track down the Organiser leave at Download for passing on to the Organiser. 

Shadowing:  Parents or guardians may follow a child around their course, but must declare to the organisers if they have assisted in any way. Adults who shadow should do so only after they have completed their own course.  If a shadower runs their own course after having been out with a child, they must declare themselves non-competitive. 

Acknowledgement:  We are grateful to Buccleuch Estates for permission to hold the event.


map location

Nearest town: Dalkeith


Dalkeith Country Park is just South of the Edinburgh City Bypass (A720) at Sheriffhall roundabout. Enter the Park by Kings Gate on A6094 soon after leaving Sheriffhall roundabout. There is a 1-way system and a low speed limit, please stick to Park rules and look out for other Park users. There is a single parking fee of £3 per day for all Park users.  This is payable on entry to the car parking area (near Restoration Yard). Card payment is preferred but cash (please have correct money) will be accepted.

This event is also easily accessible by public transport:  Buses 3, 33 or 49 from central Edinburgh will take you to central Dalkeith, while bus 140 from Penicuik or Musselburgh will drop you at Dalkeith Corn Exchange close to the park's Town Gate entrance. From the centre walk North along High Street past the Corn Exchange, and enter the park at the main gates straight ahead. Follow the main park road which bends to the right and then back left, then turn left on to the road coming from the Kings Gate entrance. Another 200m will take you to the entrance to Parking/Assembly, on your right. About 1km total from central Dalkeith. Please check bus times as services are less frequent on Sundays. Check Lothian Buses

Registration & Start Times

No registration or enquiries at the event. 

Start Times: 11am to 1pm.

Course Closure Time: Courses close approximately 80 minutes after the last start time.  As this is a Score event we expect all competitors to stick to the time allowed for their chosen course.

Start: There is a single start.  Call up for the start will be in the parking field.  

Course Information

Scottish Score Championships Courses:

70-minute: M20-35, W21 (note that the inclusion of urban elements on this course means under 16s cannot enter - this is not however a Championship course for under 16s)

60-minute: M/W16-18, W20, W35, M/W40+

40-minute: M/W14-

Yellow Course - aimed at juniors who don't wish to enter the 40 minute score but open to anyone.

NOTE RE 70 MINUTE SCORE: The 70 min Score course also has some controls in urban terrain. The urban map (at 1:4000) is printed on the reverse – note this is larger scale than the 1:7500 park map. Although it is not compulsory to enter the urban area, if you choose to there is one transition control shown on both the park and urban maps, which must be visited in both directions when changing between them. The control is on the pedestrian gate to the park and has zero point value. Near the park gates is the fairly busy Dalkeith-Musselburgh Road, which needs to be crossed to access the urban controls. Because of sharp bends traffic is fairly slow. Controls are placed such that the road may be crossed anywhere along a reasonable length, but competitors must take care.

NOTE RE DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY ON SCORE COURSES: The 70 minute and 60 minute Score courses are both technical difficulty (TD) 5 i.e. the hardest level.  The 40 minute Score course is TD3 i.e. medium difficulty and the Yellow Course is TD2 i.e. aimed at juniors who have some experience of orienteering either on a previous yellow course or on a number of White courses.

ELIGIBILITY TO BE A SCOTTISH SCORE CHAMPION: This is the same as for the Scottish Individual Championships.  Members of Scottish open Clubs will be automatically recognised as “Scots”. Other orienteers (see below for further definition of 'Scots') wishing to be classed as “Scottish”, such as those born in Scotland or long-term Scottish residents currently living outside Scotland or competing for their university, must make their status known to the organiser by the day before the event.  

“Scots” who are not currently a member of a Scottish open club are any one of the following a] born in Scotland b] have at least one Scottish parent c] be a member of the Scottish Orienteering Association.  

Explanation of colour courses

  • White are very easy with all controls on paths. They are mainly used by 6-10 year olds and family groups.
  • Yellow use simple linear features like paths, walls and streams. They are mainly used by under 12’s and family groups.
  • Orange progress to basic use of the compass and route choice. They are ideal for novice adults or experienced youngsters.
  • Light Green are ideal for improvers as the navigational difficulty begins to increase and uses simple contours and point features.
  • Green are used mostly by experienced under 18’s and adults wanting a short but challenging course with a very hard navigational difficulty.
  • Blue are a longer, more physically demanding course in comparison to the green. The distances are more varied between controls and the course attracts experienced orienteers.
  • Brown & Black are very physically demanding and have a very hard navigational difficulty. They are for experienced orienteers only.
  • Score means visiting as many controls as possible in any order in a specific time, like 45mins.

Entry Details

There is a single parking fee of £3 per day for all Park users.  This is payable on entry to the car parking area (near Restoration Yard). Card payment is preferred but cash (please have correct money) will be accepted.

Pre entry was available via Fabian4 from Monday 8th November to Thursday 18th November. Entry on the day of the event (EOD) will not be available.

Entry Fees

  to midnight 18th Nov

40, 60 & 70 Minute Score Courses

Seniors (born 2000 or earlier) BOF/SOA member £10
Seniors (born 2000 or earlier) non BOF/SOA member £12
Juniors (born 2001 or later) BOF/SOA member £5

Juniors (born 2001 or later) non BOF/SOA member

Students BOF/SOA member £5
Students non BOF/SOA member £6
Yellow Course (ONLY)  
BOF/SOA member £5
Non BOF/SOA member £6

Free standard SI card hire, if required, but there will be a £30.00 charge if it is lost.
Hire of SIAC cards is £2.50 and a charge of £60 will be made if it is lost.

Contacts / Officials

Early enquiries:  

Planner: Martin Caldwell (ESOC)

Controller: Peter Halling (ESOC)

Organiser: Tyler Morrison (ESOC)

Safety and Risk

A comprehensive risk assessment will have been carried out by the organiser, but participants take part at their own risk and are responsible for their own safety during the event.

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