Publication - Consultation paper

Crofting consultation 2017

Published: 28 Aug 2017
Agriculture and Rural Economy Directorate
Part of:
Farming and rural

We are seeking the views of crofters, and those with an interest, on the pathway of any potential new legislation to reform crofting law.

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Crofting consultation 2017


Assignation - the term used to describe the transfer with Crofting Commission consent of a croft tenancy from the crofter" to a person of their choice.

Common grazings - Areas of grazing land used by a number of crofters and others who hold a right to graze on that land.

  • Grazing Committee - a committee set up to manage the common grazings. They are elected by the crofters who use the land and to be regulated (protected by law) the committee must be recorded with the Crofting Commission
  • Grazing Constable - a person appointed by the Crofting Commission in the absence of a Grazings Committee who has similar powers and duties as a Grazing Committee
  • Grazing Share - a right to graze stock on a specific Common Grazing.

Crofting Census - a form issued annually by the Crofting Commission to a tenant or owner-occupier crofter to ascertain if they are complying with their duties. (Also known as an "Annual notice")

Crofters Duties - Both tenant and owner-occupier crofters have a duty to be resident on, or within 32 kilometres of their croft; not to misuse or neglect the croft; and cultivate and maintain the croft or put the croft to another purposeful use.

  • Absenteeism - when a crofter does not reside on or within 32 kilometres of a croft without prior agreement of the Crofting Commission.
  • Misuse - when a croft is being used for something which is not considered as cultivation. Tenants require the consent of their landlord or, failing that, the Crofting Commission if they wish to put their croft to another purposeful use.
  • Neglect - This refers to the management of the croft which should meet the standards of Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition ( GAEC).
  • Cultivate - This refers to the croft being used for cultivation or put to another purposeful use. This includes horticulture, keeping livestock including poultry and bees, growing of crops and the planting of trees
  • Maintain - This refers to the maintenance of the croft; to enable the croft to be cultivated it must be maintained in a fit state except where another purposeful use is incompatible with the croft being kept in such state.
  • Purposeful use - This refers to any planned and managed use which does not adversely affect the croft, the public interest, the interests of the landlord, or the use of adjacent land

Decrofting - The term used when land is removed from crofting tenure by a direction of the Crofting Commission.

Deemed Croft - When a crofter purchases their croft land and the grazings shares pertaining to that croft remain held in tenancy they are "deemed" to be a separate and distinct croft in their own right. As such these "deemed crofts" are given an individual entry in the Commission's Register of Crofts

Intestate Succession - When the executor of a deceased crofter notifies the landlord of the croft of the details of the person who has succeeded to the tenancy: in the case when a crofter dies without making a Will, or does not state in their Will who they wish to succeed to the tenancy of the croft, or where a bequest has failed.

Letting - The agreement between the landlord and tenant of a croft.

  • Short Term Let - a period not exceeding 10 years where an owner-occupier crofter may, with Crofting Commission consent, let their croft to a tenant under a short term lease.

Standard Security - a document which gives a mortgage provider certain rights over the mortgaged property

Subletting - Where a croft tenant with the consent of the Crofting Commission allows another person (known as the subtenant) to work all, or any part, of their croft and/or the shares in a common grazing for a fixed period of time.

REC Committee - Scottish Parliament Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee

Testate succession - When a crofter makes a Will and they name the person(s) they wish to succeed to the croft tenancy following their death.


Email: Crofting Bill Team,

Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road