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Author Topic: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?  (Read 437 times)

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« on: May 15, 2019, 12:08:30 pm »
This is a hypothetical question. If you were a smallholder in Scotland, would you register your holding as a croft if you were able to do so?
As things stand, crofters are eligible for a 40% capital grant and assistance with house building / renovation. Smallholders are eligible for the Small Farm Grant Scheme whihc is the same as teh crofters' scheme but with an income bar on eligiblity. I BELIEVE there are also discounts available of services from SRUC / SAC Consulting.

As a crofter, you have three duties - you have to live within 32km of your croft, you have to cultivate it (horticulture, agriculture, woodland or other purposeful use) and you must not neglect it. If you wanted to sell it for, say, a housing development, you would need the permission of the Crofting Commission to decroft the land and that may not be granted. I guess that might have a detrimental effect on the value of your croft.
As a croft, you're part of a unique Scottish "brand".
We would, for sure. We meet the duties anyway and we'd like to protect our smallholding from the encroachment of future development.

What would you do?
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Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2019, 03:59:15 pm »
We would remain independent.
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Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2019, 05:12:03 pm »
We would remain independent.
"Independent"?

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2019, 07:01:21 pm »
We would remain independent.
"Independent"?


OK, no differently dependent, or subject to outside control, than we already are. I don't see any benefits from converting to a croft.  When we first moved here we were still subject to feudal laws, and had to ask our neighbour, our feudal overlord, for permission for any changes or enterprises we undertook! No, this was not in 1268, it was 1995  :D  That soon changed but we are content with what we have here.  We don't need to earn a living from our land, which gives us plenty of freedom in what we do.  The only positive I can see from being a croft is the community around you, but where we live that would not be present any more than we already have.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2019, 07:04:56 pm by Fleecewife »
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

oor wullie

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Strathnairn
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2019, 08:41:21 pm »
I think I would (register a smallholding as a Croft) not because it would make much difference to my everyday activities but because it ties the land for future generations of landiwners making them live locally and use it for agriculture.

The biggest problems here are  property that sits empty due to being owned by people who don't live here and land that is neglected (because the owners want it empty as a shooting property).   Putting more land under crofting tenure would (hopefully) leave a better place for the future.

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2019, 11:16:35 pm »
It's not a position I am ever going be in but I think I would go for registering as a croft. When we moved to Lochranza, we owned a house that was built from the remains of a croft house. The field systems were still in place all on the sides of the valley. We were informed that there was going to be no building on the edges of the village. During the eleven years we were there, the edges of the village were gradually built upon, the field round our house was added to the golf course and planning permission granted for the building of a distillery. All this on the land that was supposed to be 'safe' and was also flooded several times a year. With the extra housing the floods were deeper. (we weren't affected because our house was on elevated land). If the houses on the village outskirts had still been crofts, the building couldn't have happened.

doganjo

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
  • Qui? Moi?
    • ABERDON GUNDOGS for work and show
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Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2019, 09:53:34 pm »
When I lived up north with my late partner, farming and non farming neighbours alike called our place a croft, although we weren't in the highlands. 

When I wanted to move down here on my own, I viewed a property called C***** Croft.

I bought the place I'm in now as I wasn't successful on that one, but it's only an acre,

I would register as there is no lower size limit








Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2019, 11:27:41 pm »

When I wanted to move down here on my own, I viewed a property called C***** Croft.



Off topic somewhat but several years ago my mother and step father viewed and then bought a bungalow called Corner Croft. When my mum saw the name, she was convinced that I would love the bungalow because of it. It was a modern bungalow in the middle of a huge estate in a large seaside town. She just couldn't understand why I wasn't thrilled by the name. At the time I was living in the former croft house on the Isle of Arran.  :roflanim:

doganjo

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
  • Qui? Moi?
    • ABERDON GUNDOGS for work and show
    • Facebook
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2019, 09:25:41 pm »
This one was really a croft type - 2 acre paddock, stock fenced, small cottage, half acre garden, large barn, hardstanding for equipment and a fenced area for poultry.  I was gutted when I found out my lawyer had missed the closing time.
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2019, 06:13:56 pm »
No, our land is already section 75, so stays agricultural land. I prefer to stay away from subsidies or grants as it would tie me into conditions etc. I do what I want to do, not what someone tells me to do - simple.

oor wullie

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Strathnairn
Re: Converting smallholdings to crofts - what would you do?
« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2019, 07:53:48 pm »
No, our land is already section 75, so stays agricultural land. I prefer to stay away from subsidies or grants as it would tie me into conditions etc. I do what I want to do, not what someone tells me to do - simple.


Perfectly valid approach in some circumstances but one I don't really follow in this case.

I'm a crofter and I do what I want but sometimes I get grants to help me do things that I wouldn't be able to do without them.

I've recently decided that a decent big hay shed would be useful and something I want.  I wouldn't normally be able to afford it but the crofters grant is paying 60% of the cost.  The only condition that I'm tied into is that the shed remains in agricultural use for 3 years which is hardly onerous.


 

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