STFA Response to SL&E statement on Roxburghe rent case

STFA Response to SL&E statement on Roxburghe rent case

Following today’s comment on the Roxburghe rent case by Scottish Lands and Estates STFA have issued the following statement.

Scottish Lands and Estates are following the Roxburghe factor’s unhelpful line in the blame game.  It is wholly inappropriate and in poor taste to try and apportion blame in a court decision which may yet be subject to appeal.  There are always two sides to every dispute and Lord Johnstone’s remarks are at odds with others involved in the case.  Moreover, contrary to the tone of Lord Johnstone’s comments, the tenant would have preferred to have settled the rent but not at a rate which, like for like, would be much higher than neighbouring farms on the estate.

There have already been inaccurate and misleading assertions made by Roxburghe Estates in their press release and these need to be addressed*.  SL&E should also get their facts right.  The rent of Roxburghe Mains, according to the Land Court’s papers was last reviewed in 1999, not 1996 and should be seen in context.  An important pint as Scottish Government statistics show  ‘between 1998 and 2008 there was little change in the average rent (and hence a reduction in real terms). The average rent then increased by 15 per cent between 2008 and 2011’. In comparison the rent on Roxburghe Mains, fixed by the Land Court rose by 78% between 1999 and 2009.

Rather than trying to justify what the Court has described as a “dramatic rise” Scottish Lands and Estates should now reflect on the suitability of the current rent review process.  Calls for “constructive and transparent discussions” between landlord and tenant will not heal the sores created by a dysfunctional system which plainly favours one side and takes little account of the productive capacity of the holding.


*See previous news release