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Community Land Scotland

Linn an fhearainn / 100 Years of Community Ownership is funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The ambition of the project is to create a living archive of community ownership, one of the most important political, economic, and social movements in Scotland in the last 100+ years.  
 
The project will celebrate the work of all the communities who have pioneered these achievements and provide valuable resources to inspire and support new and would-be community ownership groups to start their own journey. 

The project involves an Oral History and Archive training programme which will provide the skills for all participants to contribute to a new archive website that shares individual communities’ stories and builds a collective legacy of all of Scotland’s community owners.  

As part of the year of activities, we have the Community Ownership Electric Road show, the Simon Fraser Memorial lecture and accompanying events and, in June, an exhibition in partnership with the Travelling Gallery, Where We Stand, will tour various parts of Scotland.  

More details of all these happenings can be found below. 

Where we Stand

A partnership with the travelling gallery to tell the story of community ownership

In partnership with Travelling Gallery, we are delighted this exhibition will travel around Scotland in Summer 2024; celebrating 100 years of community ownership in Scotland. Through a series of exciting artworks from contemporary artists Where We Stand will tell the stories and achievements of the pioneers of community ownership, a movement that has transformed Scotland. 

Artists include Virginia Hutchison, Richard Bracken and Colin Tennant & Saskia Coulson; and new commissions by Francia Boakye, Kate O’Shea, and Emma Duncan, Jan Little & Helen Walsh.  

New commissions are being realised by North Edinburgh Arts; Isle of Eigg Heritage Trust, Govanhill Baths Community Trust and Bothy Project; and Langholm Initiative & Creation Mill. 

Events

Final tour dates and specific locations will be available here soon.

Oral History Workshop for Community Owners​

Capturing your story​

Community Land Scotland recognises the importance of community owners telling their own stories, so we’re running workshops to support people to present their stories themselves. 

Join us for an exciting online workshop to help community owners collect and share their own oral history which documents the path towards community ownership. This engaging workshop, led by Iain Craig, will help with practical tools for collecting stories as well as creating space for discussion and skills sharing, drawing from the expertise of the participants. 

This Training is available for all communities that own land or buildings. If you’d like to express an interest in future in-person trainings, or to be kept informed of up coming online dates, please contact: gavin.cowan@communitylandscotland.org.uk

Ultimately, communities will add their unique content to the new archive website, to build a resource which informs of and reflects on the journey of community ownership in Scotland to date, from the perspective of those who know it best.  

The Simon Fraser Memorial Series

Looking at the last 100 years of reform and what the next 100 years may look like

The lecture series is dedicated to the memory of Simon Fraser, a solicitor and pioneer of land reform in Scotland. Simon was instrumental in the success of some of the early community buyouts including Eigg, Knoydart and Gigha as well as the Assynt Crofters buyout. 

Simon said of the Eigg buyout ”It is a triumph for all that is good in humanity and certainly one in the eye for everything that is mean-spirited and self-seeking.”.

The first inaugural Memorial Lecture in Edinburgh in February shed light on Simon’s life and contribution to land reform, as well as looking forward to the future and asking, what next? There are several more talks and events planned  in partnership with various groups across the country. Upcoming events and those past events that were recorded can be found below.  

Past Events

Edinburgh

The Edinburgh Simon Fraser event featured insights from experts and cultural figures, who highlighted the historic impact of community ownership on communities.

Watch The Simon Fraser Memorial Lecture here

Gigha

Gigha marked its 22nd birthday in grand style with a spectacular celebration, featuring a flag-raising ceremony and speeches delving into the profound impact of community wealth building on the local community.

Community Ownership Electric Roadshow

Bringing stories of community ownership together

In Spring 2023, to celebrate 100 Years of Community Ownership, we visited communities across the Northeast of Scotland and Tayside to share inspiring stories of community ownership. Over the course of one week in February, we met with groups in Angus, Stirling, Dundee, and Aberdeen. 

We partnered with Kirrie Connections, Creative Stirling, Creative Dundee, and the Fittie Community Development Company to host these four information sessions to explore the benefits and opportunities of community ownership.