Crofting Convener seeks to stop SRDP funding for Common Grazings

I don't believe it - Crofting Commission up to their neck in it

“I don’t believe it!”

Whilst the media concentrated last week on Fergus Ewing’s letter to Colin Kennedy stating that the Scottish Government disagreed with the way the Common Grazings debacle had been handled there was another significant element to his letter. This was that:-

there is nothing in the CAP rules that prevents the Scottish Government approving applications for SRDP funding in respect of a common grazings by a Grazings Committee.

This would suggest that the Convener of the Crofting Commission was seeking to prevent common grazings committees receiving SRDP funding! Why on earth would a crofter elected to represent the interests of crofters on the Crofting Commission seek to do that?

Furthermore what does SRDP funding have to do with the crofting regulator? Absolutely nothing!

It is worrying indeed that the Crofting Commission and/or their Convener might be spending any time or resources at all on seeking to deprive grazings committees of funding in the first place never mind them seeking to divest those committees of monies as soon as received.

It was made clear in the letter that this view on SRDP funding was Colin Kennedy’s own view and not one shared by the Board of the Crofting Commission. I will explore that fact further in my next blog post.

Brian Inkster

Image Credit: ©BBC – Victor Meldrew in One Foot in the Grave

5 thoughts on “Crofting Convener seeks to stop SRDP funding for Common Grazings

  1. Malc

    Hello All,

    A couple of years ago our Common Grazing had a rent revue by the SLC and found to our cost that because we have SRDP payments this entitled the Land Lord to get a cut of it by way of increasing the rent per summing and in my case that went from £0.03p per head to £1.42 per head, this was a systemic increase in rent, all because of the SRDP payment, so if the Scottish Government take that away then will we be entitled to go back to the SLC and get our rent reduced back down, I think not……..

  2. Duncan MacLeod

    Quite extraordinary. So we can guess the Convener has written or otherwise communicated with the the Minister trying to persuade him he must stop grazing committees getting SRDP funding.

    Such action would be in serious breach of the first, the most important section section of the crofting legislation, which tells the Commission why it exists.

    Crofters (Scotland) Act 1993 Section 1 (2) states:
    The Commission have – (a) the general functions of – (i) regulating crofting (ii) reorganising crofting (iii) promoting the interests of crofting (iv) keeping under review matters relating to crofting.

    So “promoting the interests of crofting” is one of the Commissions most important functions. The Convener and the Commission now need to tell us how trying to argue grazing committees shouldn’t be allowed to get funding that lets them develop and manage their grazings better. And can make crofting more attractive to inactive shareholders is IN THE INTERESTS OF CROFTING.

    If this is the Convener’s great idea his position is untenable. But why have the rest of the Commission allowed him to argue this? Looks like the Convener does whatever he likes and the Commissioners sit in silence and let him. Is this a dictatorship instead of a democratic board?

  3. Linda Brackenbury

    The whys and the wherefores are many and no answers forthcoming..or at least none that anyone with half a brain can understand,

    the keyword here is “Adrenalin”,

    the more attention there is, the more he thrives, he will not step down, why should he?
    he is enjoying himself too much, he gets a kick out of other peoples pain, the more attention he gets the more he will want, you only have to ask the people of the Island of Coll many of whom have experienced a lifetime of misery from him, in saying that the people of Coll may not answer for fear of reprisal,
    and of course with regard to those in the Outer Hebrides..they are paying for his that mentally or financially or both..
    all at the expense of the crofters concerned and of the public purse.
    The only time the convener is likely to look glum is when he himself has to dig into his own pocket.

    I doubt there is a lawyer in the country who can truthfully say they see a motive,
    sometimes, there is no real motive..but rather a made up one, allegations flow freely from him..
    as for the CC, continuing to condone such antics, well in my humble opinion (and I am not a crofter)
    that just goes to show that they like so many others in authority, they can be fooled liked any one else..
    and as such are unfit for present day crofting.

    The convener is like a cancer that has not yet been arrested, has not been in remission but continues to spread into every corner that such authorities allows, he is looking for the commission and the government to bow down to him..
    and no matter what they offer him he will not go away..

    It is high time the government stepped up on this one, Fergus Ewing MSP really needs to get his finger out..and do something other than write a namby pamby letter..which means little or nothing to he who does the damage!

  4. Roy Pentland

    The convener is a multimillionaire and owns half of the Isle of Coll, he’s no more a crofter than I am William Wallace! He’s a savvy businessman who is running circles around the minions at the Crofting Commission. You only have to do a google search to reveal how many properties, wind farms, holiday cottages, farms, crofts and businesses he owns. One wonders how he acquired that lot?? The Crofting Commission is weak and no doubt intimidated by this wealthy landowner but the only ones to suffer will be the genuine crofters because those in the Crofting Commission have no backbone and fear the backlash if they upset the one known as the “The Island Bully”

    1. Linda Brackenbury

      Spot on there Roy Pentland..
      F.O.I is an eye opener to many, court cases aplenty in the public domain not to mention records of his own.
      One has to ask how such a person gets into a position such as his.


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