Scotland has the most unequal landownership pattern in the developed world, with half of Scotland’s privately owned land owned by 0.008% of the population. This concentration in landownership has an adverse effect on Scotland’s communities, making it more difficult to stem depopulation, tackle urban decline and stop wealth leaking out of communities.
Since the Scottish Parliament was established in 1999, a series of rights for communities have been introduced. These include the introduction of:
The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016 also made Scotland the first country in the world to set out landowners’ responsibilities as well as their rights.
Land reform in Scotland is often described as a journey. It’s one that we are still on, with a new Land Reform Bill and Community Wealth Building Act set to be introduced in this Parliamentary term.
We have a huge opportunity this year with the introduction of the Land Reform Bill. We need to make sure this legislation delivers the conditions we need for further community ownership and to break up monopoly landholdings.
There are also opportunities to refine implementation of existing legislation to improve conditions for prospective community owners and to make it fundamentally easier for communities to buy land and assets.
We are advocating for a robust and ambitious Land Reform Bill which delivers the following legislative changes:
Land Reform Resources
Land Reform News
John Watt reflects on his long career working in Scottish community development and land reform, the progress that has been made and the challenges that remain. In 1997, following a
Community Land Scotland has published research by Professor Mike Danson on the impact of community land ownership in locations which were previously under monopoly ownership.