Tractor in the outer Isles

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Comment From SCF On Events At Commission’s Board Meeting

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

SCF chair Fiona Mandeville said: “Surely now the convener will do what he should have done weeks ago – stand down and let the people who genuinely care about crofting get on with their work. So much time and energy has been wasted during this inexcusable debacle. We have had enough of Kennedy and want to see the back of him. By his action in walking out from the board meeting today and not meeting the Minister’s request for an apology, we take it that he has finally abdicated.

“We welcome the Commission board taking this decisive action at last and look forward to working with them to rebuild trust in the Commission and to developing strategies for crofting, taking up again all the positive initiatives which had been set aside while Kennedy was in control.

“We also naturally welcome the apology issued by the board after the convener’s departure.”

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SCF Welcomes Prospect Of Commission Apology

Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) has welcomed the news that Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing has told the Crofting Commission to apologise to crofters for their behaviour over common grazings, and has launched a review of the Commission.

“It has taken a long battle to get to this point”, said SCF’s Chair, Fiona Mandeville, “but it is extremely good that it is reported that Mr Ewing has made clear his support to crofters by directing the Commissioners to issue a full, unequivocal, public apology for their mistreatment of common grazings committees. This whole episode has been badly damaging to individuals, to crofting communities and to crofting itself, so we hope an apology may be the first step in a healing process.

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Deep Concern That Constable Is Still In Place

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) has written to the cabinet secretary for crofting, Fergus Ewing MSP, expressing deep concern that crofters’ democratic rights are being flouted by a constable appointed, perhaps illegally, by the Crofting Commission.

“The majority of shareholders of the Upper Coll grazings have voted,” said SCF chair Fiona Mandeville, “yet this constable, whose legality of appointment is refuted by lawyers, is completely ignoring them. The shareholders have demanded that the constable, Colin Souter, who was appointed by the Crofting Commission, stands down so that they can reinstate a democratically elected grazings committee. Why is he still there?

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SCF Regrets The Loss Of Commission’s Helm

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) have expressed good wishes to Catriona MacLean, the CEO of the Crofting Commission, who is moving on, and its concern that the organisation is left without a helm.

“We have worked closely with Catriona for over three years and have seen the Crofting Commission become much more competent in its administrative functions”, said Fiona Mandeville, Chair of the Federation. “Her helmsmanship has been very significant in keeping some sensibility over the grazings debacle that has led crofters to lose confidence in the commissioners. We are therefore viewing her departure with not a little trepidation. The importance of appointing a strong successor as soon as possible cannot be over emphasised.

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SCF And Sleat Grazings Committee Meet To Discuss Future Of Commission

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) met last week with crofting representatives of Sleat, Skye, to discuss proposals to replace the Crofting Commission.

“The ideas put forward by the Sleat General Grazings Committee on replacing the Crofting Commission with a more democratic and community-empowering model are valid and have a great deal of merit,” SCF chair Fiona Mandeville said. “We had a very open and constructive preliminary meeting and intend to take this further to get SCF members’ opinions and to explore options.

The ideas are akin to the suggestions made by the Committee of Inquiry on Crofting in 2008,” Ms Mandeville continued, “a very comprehensive study into crofting. The fact that there are significant similarities gives further credibility to the Sleat General Grazings Committee’s proposals.

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