Overcoming barriers to community land-based activities: gudiance

Guidance on good practice in overcoming barriers to community land-based activities.

Appendix B: Classification of alternative land ownership barriers to community activities

Table 2. Classification of alternative land ownership barriers to community activities (Roberts and McKee, 2015: 15)

Categories of barriers


Underlying cause

Deficiencies in ownership rights

A. Ownership unknown or unclear

A.1 Information on title deeds are incomplete, missing or difficult to access

A.2 Ownership in dispute

A.3 Owner lacks legal capacity (including executors/administrators)

B. Ownership rights divided

B.1 Land held in Trust [functionality of Trust]

B.2 Land subject to leases or licences [or subordinate real rights]

B.3 Land subject to mortgages or other securities

B.4 Land subject to restrictive Title conditions/real burdens

B.5 Land subject to servitudes or rights of way

B.6 Land subject to options or conditional contracts

Landowner behaviour

C. Assembly of ownership required

C.1 Ransom strips

C.2 Multiple ownership

D. Unacceptable terms

D.1 Restrictive terms of conditions of sale/transfer of lesser rights

D.2 Different valuations

E. Owner unwilling to sell or lease land

E.1 Retention for continued current use (includes for occupation/investment/making available to others on non-profit basis)

E.2 Retention for control or protection/conservation

E.3 Retention for subsequent own development

E.4 Retention for subsequent sale (due to indecision, postponement, uncertainty or speculation)

External factors affecting communities

F. Structural barriers facing communities

F.1 Inability to raise funding

F.2 Regulations and limitations to advisory support

F.3 Lack of legitimacy

Internal factors affecting communities

G. Community constraints and decisions

G.1 Potential liabilities of ownership disproportionate to community benefits

G.2 Differing community aspirations

G.3 Lack of community capacity

G.4 Lack of willingness to engage with landowner


Email: Graeme Beale, socialresearch@gov.scot

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