Scottish land reform updates

(both updates via the excellent Senscot weekly briefing)

When the Community Empowerment Act extended the right to buy to all of Scotland – there was an optimism about what this could mean for communities in our cities. However, news this week that the community buy-out of Edinburgh’s Sick Kids Hospital has been thwarted is a further dent to this optimism – and not the first example of this in the city. Once again property developers have won the day. Questions need to be asked about whether or not the Act – in urban areas – has bitten off more than it can chew.

More info at http://www.scottishcommunityalliance.net/articles/2619/

Andy Wightman, Scotland’s intrepid land reform campaigner, claims in a report published this week that there are almost 4000 derelict sites in Scotland; the Scottish Greens want to give local councils the power to tax them – a ‘vacant site levy’. According to their research, 70% of this land is suitable for development – and taxing it would generate £200m a year to build affordable homes. In Jan 2016, the Greens tried to amend the land reform bill to tax vacant land – but the SNP rejected it. The worsening shortage of affordable housing suggests that this report will get some serious consideration.

Next network meeting and Leicester Land for What? information

Saturday 11th November @ Graceworks, Leicester
(Wycliffe URC, The Common, Evington, Leicester, LE5 6EA)

10.00am – Land for What?
An introduction to land as a common ground social justice issue
11.45am – Biscuits and tea
12.00am – Understanding the housing crisis in song and pie charts
1.00pm – Shared pot-luck lunch
(Bring a dish if you can… there will be plenty of food provided if you can’t)
2.00pm – Land Justice Network meeting (2-3 hrs)
Agenda to be participatory agendered soon

Please reserve your place here –
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/land-for-what-leicester-and-quarterly-land-justice-network-meeting-tickets-37908182394

There is the possibility of a minibus coming up from Brighton via London. Please email landjusticeUK@gmail.com if you are interested, letting us know whether you’d prefer to go up Friday evening or Saturday morning.

Also worth dropping us a line if you can offer a car share or need assistance with travel costs (we have some budget to support expenses).

There’s a Three Acres And A Cow show at the same venue on the evening before if you fancy – https://threeacresandacow.co.uk/leicester-show – Friday 10th November.

Celebrate the 800th anniversary of the Charter of the Forest

Network member the New Putney Debates have put together a fine line up to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the Charter of the Forest.

They kick off with an event this Sunday 17th September which involves a boat trip from London out to Runnymede with more amazing speakers and contributors than you can shake a stick at:

Continue reading Celebrate the 800th anniversary of the Charter of the Forest

Towards a Land Reform Bill workshop

Workshop One: Land taxation to benefit the many, not the few

This will run from 13:00 – 16:30 at UCL on Saturday 16th September 2017
(University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT)

Please sign up here – https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/towards-a-land-reform-bill-land-taxation-to-benefit-the-many-not-the-few-tickets-37268716735

Continue reading Towards a Land Reform Bill workshop

Land for What? London – Public and Community Space

A session exploring the effect of privatisation and austerity on parks, recreation, community and public spaces Hosted by Kate Swade (Shared Assets) with Dave Morris  (National Federation of Parks and Green Spaces).

Network Launch and Planning Meeting (June 10th)

Do you want to take an active role in guiding and organising the next stage of Land for What?

Hundreds of us came together in November to discuss the past, present and future of land in the UK. We learned a lot from each other, felt inspired, and made lots of great connections. Now we’re going to work together to kick off the next stage.

We’ve organised a Network Launch and Planning Meeting for June 10th in London. This meeting will bring people together who are enthusiastic about creating a network of groups and people who are working on land issues in the UK. We’ll share some ideas about how we think this network might work but we are also open to suggestions. The coalition who organised the conference will not be running this network – instead it will be the people who step forward now.

This event won’t be about hearing from speakers it will be about the roles each of us can play in developing this network. We’re looking for people who want to take an active role in guiding and organising the development of Land for What (or whatever it becomes).

So check out the new eventbrite page, and sign up if you want to get involved in guiding or organising the next part of this journey. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/land-for-what-network-launch-and-planning-meeting-tickets-34070140708

Please also sign up to the mailing list if you haven’t already. 

And finally, you can also now see videos from the November conference on our youtube channel.

Two upcoming Land for What conversations in Peterborough and Norwich (March 18th-19th)

We’ve got two workshops coming up in Peterborough (18th March) and Norwich (19th March).

Join Three Acres And A Cow, Norwich Farmshare, Community Land Scotland, Landworker’s Alliance, Shared Assets and other guests to explore and raise our awareness of land as a common ground issue connecting housing, food and farming, energy, environment and public and community space.

We’ll increase our knowledge about land ownership and the history of land struggles; connect to share skills and experiences; and inspire participants to take learning and energy for change back to their communities.

Please sign up in advance so we have an idea of numbers (follow the links below). Look forward to seeing you there!

Norwich event

Peterborough event

Report of discussions at Land for What on 12th-13th November 2016

On the weekend of 12th-13th November 2016, hundreds of people with diverse backgrounds and interests gathered to talk about the issues surrounding land, and to look for spaces for solutions. This report summarises some of the sessions from the weekend. Thanks to everyone who submitted a session summary. We hope it can be useful for people who weren’t able to make it to the event, and will help inspire further discussions.

Read the full report here