Community Land Scotland has welcomed the opportunity for communities to express their views on the sale of Langholm Moor. The consultation process, which is looking at the future of the 25,000 acre landholding, opened at the end of May and closes today (28th June).
Langholm Moor is ecologically and economically significant for the South of Scotland and Community Land Scotland has received a number of enquiries from communities in the area that are interested in purchasing one or more parcels of land.
Ian Hepburn, Chair of Community Land Scotland said “Estates of this scale rarely come on the market in the South of Scotland. We warmly welcome this move by Buccleuch to consult on the sale of the Langholm Moor. Buccleuch has stewarded this land for years and it would be fantastic to see them leaving a lasting legacy by giving communities the opportunity to buy the land. Community Land Scotland has a Protocol for Negotiated Sales with Scottish Land and Estates, of which Buccleuch is a Member, which sets out a step-by-step process for landowners that are selling land to communities to follow. We hope than any interested communities will be given the opportunity to use the Protocol.”
Scoping work undertaken by the Scottish Government in 2017 showed that there were fewer than 1000 acres of land in community ownership in Dumfries and Galloway and the Scottish Borders. This compares with 385,000 acres in the Western Isles alone.
Linsay Chalmers, Development Manager with Community Land Scotland said “We have seen an explosion of interest in community landownership in the South of Scotland in the past couple of years. Communities in the Borders and Dumfries and Galloway are looking to the Highlands and Islands of Scotland and seeing that community landowners are successfully reversing years of decline and depopulation. These issues are just as pressing in the South of Scotland as in the Highlands”.