Scottish Vacant and Derelict Land Survey 2018

Data collection undertaken to establish the extent and state of vacant and derelict land in Scotland.

This document is part of a collection

2. Background to the Survey

2.1 The Scottish Vacant and Derelict Land Survey (SVDLS) is a data collection undertaken to establish the extent and state of vacant and derelict land in Scotland. The survey has been operating since 1988, and is managed by the Scottish Government Communities Analysis Division. The data is sourced from local authorities and the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Authority. Most authorities submit data annually with a Survey base date of 31st March.

2.2 The main purpose of these statistics is to provide the evidence base for monitoring the extent and state of urban vacant and derelict land, the remediation of vacant and derelict land and progress in bringing it into re-use, and to inform the programming of rehabilitation, planning and reuse of urban vacant and derelict sites.

2.3 The statistics are used by the Scottish Government to help allocate and monitor the impact of the Vacant and Derelict Land Fund (VDLF). The VDLF is one element of regeneration investment and aims to tackle long-term vacant and derelict land in Scotland. Its objectives are to stimulate economic growth, create jobs, promote environmental justice and improved quality of life, and to support communities to flourish and tackle inequalities.

2.4 The statistics contribute to the Government's performance indicator for sustainable communities that measures progress on Housing and Regeneration outcomes. Further information on this can be found at:

2.5 Other uses of the statistics by Scottish Government and other stakeholders are published at:

2.6 Vacant land is land unused for the purposes for which it is held and is viewed as an appropriate site for development. This land must either have had prior development on it or preparatory work has taken place in anticipation of future development.

2.7 The main part of this bulletin covers vacant land (referred to as Urban Vacant) that is located within settlements of over 2,000 in population (as defined in council local plans, see (Annex Section A.7). Some local authorities have also surveyed for vacant land within settlements of under 2,000 in population. Further information on those results can be found in Annex Table 2.

2.8 Derelict land (and buildings) is land which has been so damaged by development, that it is incapable of development for beneficial use without rehabilitation. In addition the land must currently not be used for the purpose for which it is held or a use acceptable in the local plan. Land also qualifies as derelict if it has an un-remedied previous use which could constrain future development. For both vacant and derelict land, site records must be at least 0.1 hectares in size to be included.

2.9 From 2011 urban vacant and derelict land within Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority (LLTNP) is separately identified. Previously sites within the national park boundaries were recorded within the relevant local authority boundary. Therefore the amount of vacant and derelict land within Argyll and Bute, Perth and Kinross, Stirling and West Dunbartonshire local authorities for 2011 onwards is not directly comparable with that for years prior to this.

2.10 In previous surveys local authorities were asked to indicate up to three preferred future uses for sites as defined in the most recent local plan or other approved local authority planning policy documents. After consultation with relevant stakeholders it was agreed that these data would no longer be collected. Therefore from the 2013 bulletin onwards there is no analysis of future use provided.



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