Author: Sara Smith

Tenant Farming Commissioner issues Sporting Rights Code of Practice

Scotland’s Tenant Farming Commissioner, Bob McIntosh, has issued a Code of Practice to be followed by agricultural tenants, landlords, agents acting on their behalf and the holder of sporting rights.

The Code of Practice for The Management of Relationships Between Agricultural Tenants and the Holder of Sporting Rights is the third to be published by the Commissioner under the authority of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016.

The Tenant Farming Commissioner (TFC) is responsible for issuing a suite of codes to guide and shape the behaviours and processes which accompany the interactions and negotiations between landlords and tenants, including agents and intermediaries acting for either party.

Bob McIntosh said: ‘’ It is normal for landowners who let agricultural land to retain the game sporting rights, and to exercise those rights either themselves or to lease them to a third party.

The aim of this code of practice is to minimise conflict between landlords, tenants and the holder of the sporting rights on tenanted land “The code explains that good communication and cooperation between the landlord, tenant and holder of sporting rights is key and provides a series of actions and behaviours which if followed should minimise conflict.

“I have worked closely with the Scottish Tenant Farmers Association, NFU Scotland, Scottish Land & Estates and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in developing this code so that, wherever possible, agreed positions are reasonable and fair to both landlords and tenant farmers.

“As with all codes issued by the Tenant Farming Commissioner, if a landlord or tenant feels that the other party, or an agent of that party, has acted in a way that breaches the code of practice they are able to make a complaint to the Commissioner. “

The Code of Practice for The Management of Relationships Between Agricultural Tenants and the Holder of Sporting Rights can be found on the Land Commission’s website www.landcommission.gov.scot.

Scottish Land Commission – Conference

We held our first land reform conference on Thursday 28 September 2017 at the Carnegie Conference Centre, Dunfermline.

140 attendees joined us to look at the ‘The Vision of Land Reform 2022 and beyond’ and guest speakers included:

  • Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, Roseanna Cunningham
  • Laurie Macfarlane, Economics Editor at openDemocracy and co-author of the critically acclaimed book Rethinking the Economics of Land and Housing 
  • Sarah Skerratt, Professor of Rural Society & policy, Director of the Rural Policy Centre, SRUC

Workshop notes are available here.

Conference presentations: Sarah Skerratt, Laurie Macfarlane, Andrew Thin & Hamish Trench

Tenant Farming Commissioner invites landlords & tenants to take part in survey of views on agents’ conduct

Scotland’s Tenant Farming Commissioner, Bob McIntosh, is encouraging landlords and tenants to take part in a survey of views and experiences of the conduct of agents engaged to act on their behalf in matters relating to agricultural holdings.

The survey is part of the review of agents which the Tenant Farming Commissioner is tasked to complete under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016.  The Tenant Farming Commissioner must complete the review and make recommendations to Ministers to improve the operation of agents of landlords and tenants by March 2018.

The Scottish Land Commission has commissioned Research Resource, a social and economic research agency based in Glasgow, to carry out telephone interviews with a representative sample of tenant farmers and landlords to find out about their views and experiences with regard to the operation of agents.

Bob McIntosh said: “In order for the researchers to deliver a robust factual report it is important that we have a representative sample of both landlords and tenant farmers.

“Participating in the survey is entirely voluntary, but I would encourage both landlords and tenants to take part so that we can get a true understanding of the current situation with regard to the operation of agents and the impact it has on relations in the sector.

“Information provided will be completely confidential.  Research Resource will only report back results of the survey from tenant farmers and landlords overall and individual responses will not be traceable.

”The information will be collected and collated in an independent, open and fair manner and the findings will be discussed with key representative bodies before I make recommendations to Scottish Ministers.”

A representative sample of tenant farmers will also be interviewed and these will be selected from the Scottish Government’s agricultural census database.

If you are a landlord, who would like to be considered to take part in the survey, please note your interest here www.researchresource.co.uk/surveyofagents.html  or contact Lorna Shaw at Research Resource on 0141 641 6410  lorna.shaw@researchresource.co.uk.  The telephone interviews will take place from the end of October and throughout November and will take approximately 15 minutes.

 

Have a look at our FAQs about the survey to find out more.

Meet & Greet – Glasgow

NEW DATE ADDED:

Tuesday 28 November 2017 from 6pm

City Halls, Glasgow

This is your opportunity to find out more about the new Scottish Land Commission, who we are and what we do.

We would also like to hear from you and what you think the priorities for land reform should be.

This event is free and tea and coffee will be provided. For more information call 0300 244 4452 or email info@landcommission.gov.scot.

Review of agents begins

Tenant Farming Commissioner starts work on the review of the conduct of agents of landlords and tenants

 Scotland’s Tenant Farming Commissioner, Bob McIntosh, has begun work on the review of agents. The review will look at the views and experiences of tenant farmers and landlords with regard to the conduct of professionals engaged by either party to act on their behalf in matters relating to agricultural holdings.

Under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016, the Tenant Farming Commissioner must complete the review and make recommendations to Ministers to improve the operation of agents of landlords and tenants by March 2018.

Bob McIntosh explains:

“This is our first substantial piece of research and it is important that a broad range of evidence is collected on the views and experiences of landlords and tenants regarding their satisfaction with the conduct of agents acting on their behalf.

“This research will help to get a true understanding of the current situation with regard to the operation of agents and the impact it has on relations in the sector. The findings from the completed report with be discussed with key representative bodies, who will be given the opportunity to make submissions to inform the review, before recommendations are made to Scottish Ministers.”

The Scottish Land Commission has issued a notice on Public Contracts Scotland asking for contractors to submit tenders to carry out this important piece of research. More information on the contract specifications can be found here: www.publiccontractsscotland.gov.uk.

Tenant Farming Commissioner issues guidance on relinquishment of 1991 Act tenancies

 Scotland’s Tenant Farming Commissioner, Bob McIntosh, has issued a short guide to the provisions in the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016 for the relinquishment of 1991 Act tenancies.

The new arrangements for relinquishing tenancies were introduced by the 2016 Act with the aim of enabling tenants to realise the value in a secure tenancy when they relinquish it, in the hope that this would release more tenanting opportunities for new entrants to farming.

The guide describes the main features of the legislation, however landlords and tenants involved in relinquishment cases are advised to obtain appropriate professional advice relevant to their own particular circumstances.

The guide can be found here.