Revised Land Rights and Responsibilities Statement - Principle 2
This Principle received majority support from respondents, with community organisations in particular in favour of retaining it with its current wording. Some respondents noted that Principle 2 has different applications in urban or rural situations and appears to be more firmly directed towards the rural policy space.
The embedding of access to land was seen as critically important, with other comments including that more should be done to promote community access to land and assets. It was suggested by some that Principles 2 and 3 be combined as they cover similar themes relating to a more diverse pattern of land ownership.
Scottish Government Response
Following the consultation, the Scottish Government has decided not to make any changes to Principle 2. The principle, which focusses on encouraging a more diverse pattern of land ownership and tenure, with more opportunities for citizens to own, lease and have access to land, still reflects Scottish Government policy and aspirations for land ownership in Scotland.
The Scottish Government considers that the pattern of land ownership influences land use, and that there may be occasions when the scale or pattern of land ownership and control can be a barrier to sustainable development. A wide and diverse availability of land and buildings allows businesses, organisations and individuals to pursue projects of all scales and purposes. The Scottish Government is committed to land reform on an ongoing basis, and over the summer 2022 published a consultation paper 'Land Reform in a Net Zero Nation' on further measures to support this principle.
The Scottish Government noted the comments in support of combining Principles 2 and 3, and of keeping them as stand-alone principles. The Scottish Government has elected to keep Principles 2 and 3 separate to reflect the different focus of each – Principle 2 on diversity of land ownership and tenure, and Principle 3 on community ownership and use of land. Both principles reflect the importance of, and differing roles, that diverse ownership and community ownership have to play in helping to support Scotland as a modern, sustainable and successful country.
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