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Community ownership is integral to regeneration and sustainable development in both rural and urban Scotland. We are working to make community ownership a normal and routine option for a community to acquire and own land that could provide local housing, business development, community facilities, recreation facilities, greenspace, as a fundamental way to create more vibrant communities and regional economies.

With more than 211,998 hectares of land (2.6% of the total land area of Scotland) under community ownership, many parts of Scotland are already demonstrating the value that this form of ownership can bring. Recent legislation also extends the option to include urban land, buildings and communities.

Community ownership is not an end in itself, but a means to achieving a range of positive outcomes from social and economic development to environmental management and restoration. Communities have many options to secure and develop land and for those that are interested in exploring the community ownership option, there is a wide range of financing models.

Our aim is to achieve a culture shift so that community ownership becomes a routine option for communities, so that it is a planned and proactive approach to community development, rather than reactive, driven by specific problems or land coming onto the market.

Land ownership

Case Studies

West Harris Trust

The West Harris Trust was formed in 2008 to purchase three crofting estates belonging to the Scottish Government.

link to West Harris Trust case study

L’Arche de La Nature: A forest for the many

The L’Arche de la Nature municipal forest in Le Mans, France has parallels for community forestry in Scotland.

link to L’Arche de La Nature: A forest for the many case study

Culduthel Community Woods

Culduthel Woods Group is undergoing the legal process of acquiring the ownership of currently ownerless woodland in Inverness.

link to Culduthel Community Woods case study

Aultnaskiach Dell Community Woodland

The owners of Aultnaskiach Dell wanted to safeguard the woods from potential development so asked locals if there was interest in a community buyout.

link to Aultnaskiach Dell Community Woodland case study