Crofters denied sight of report

THE SCOTTISH Government is refusing to send a copy of a major report on crofting to local crofters, according to isles MSP Tavish Scott.

He said he had received a letter from environment minister Mike Russell, which stated that it would not be the best use of public funds.

Mr Scott will chair a series of meetings across Shetland next week in conjunction with the Scottish Crofters Foundation, the NFU and others on the future of crofting. That follows publication of the Shucksmith Report which proposes radical reform of crofting, including the abolition of the Crofters Commission.

Mr Scott said: “Ministers have called the Shucksmith Report the most important for years. So crofters need to know what’s in it. So I am surprised that ministers are unprepared to ensure that every registered croft has a copy.

“Quite how every croft is meant to know the detail of this report without having a copy is not clear. The minister seems to want to publicise his own thinking but not that of an independent report. That is disappointing but possibly not surprising.

“I look forward to the discussions on the future of crofting that we are planning next week. It is important that crofters and people who care about the future of agriculture across the isles have an opportunity to put their views. My office does have copies of the report so in the absence of government’s help, anyone who does wish a copy, please get in touch.”


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