Scotland to celebrate it's first Community Land Week

Allotment style gardens
Hannah Downey

Community Land Scotland (CLS) was established in 2010 as a response to the need for a collective voice for community landowners in Scotland - There are currently  90 members, of which 55 are community landowners owning and managing approximately 500,000 acres between them and 35 are working towards owning land. CLS represents these existing and aspiring community landowners to reflect their views in promoting changes to legislation to empower communities, while acting as a point of contact for any communities in Scotland who wish to find out more about community land ownership.

This year, from the 11th to the 19th August, community landowners across Scotland will invite people to take part in events as part of the first ever Community Land Week. The aim of the Week is to help the public get a better understanding of how taking ownership of land and assets can also help communities take control of their own future. Events will include guided walks around renewable energy projects and community-owned forests, opening ceremonies for new projects and talks on community landownership.

Community Land Week is being coordinated by Community Land Scotland and the Scottish Government. Linsay Chalmers, Development Manager at Community Land Scotland said: “Often there is a blaze of publicity when a community land buyout takes place but people don’t get to hear about what happens afterwards.  This Week gives us an opportunity to help community landowners share stories about what they have achieved’.

So far, sixteen events have been confirmed, with communities from the North of Lewis to Edinburgh to the very South West point of Scotland will be taking part. If this year’s event proves to be a success with the public, it’s hoped that an even larger event will run in 2019.

One of those taking part is Sleat Community Trust on Skye, which will be running several events, aimed at both the public and other Community Trusts. The aim is to share information about the wide range of projects and activities they have been involved in including their community-owned forest, the development of a trading site at Armadale, community broadband, renewable projects and community broadband to name just a few. There is also the Machrihanish Airbase Community Company in Kintyre, which you can learn more about in the video below.

 

MACC from Community Land Scotland on Vimeo.

More details can be found on the Community Land Scotland web site: www.communitylandscotland.org.uk