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“I need some help to farm my land.”

“I need land to help me get into farming”

“Let's work together”

Existing farmer looking for a share farmer

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Type of farm:

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0212 123 45 67



24 Some Street

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SLMS at the Royal Highland Show.

The Scottish Land Matching Service will be hosting ‘drop-in’ sessions on the NFU Scotland / NFU Mutual stand (Avenue O, Number 572) at the Royal Highland Show starting this Thursday.

Allan Young and Ian Davidson will be on the stand from 2 pm until 4 pm on Thursday and Friday if you want to drop in for an informal chat about the service, how it might be able to provide assistance and the different options that might be available to those thinking about the future and succession.

We look forward to seeing everyone at the Royal Highland Show.

Organic Market Garden Opportunity

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Phone: 07741 902648

December update from SLMS.

As we approach the end of another year who would have thought that Covid19 would still be having such an impact on our lives. The uncertainty caused for individuals and businesses alike is extreme and the impact that has on mental health cannot be underestimated.

Farming and crofting are not immune from that uncertainty even although the daily routine of tending to crops and animals goes on. At times like this it can be really difficult to think about the future, but it is something we should all try and do because even in more “normal” times no one knows what lies around the corner. Having said that it has been encouraging in the last three months that Scottish Land Matching Service (SLMS) has been contacted by more people just at the early stage of planning for the future and seeking some independent advice. It is good to talk.

SLMS was set up to try and address the shortage of opportunities for new entrants and those young people trying to develop their business by matching them up with someone at the other end of their farming / crofting career who was looking to take a step back from day to day. That lack of opportunities was largely down to two factors: 

  1. difficulty in accessing land 
  2. difficulty in accessing capital

With the price of land on a seemingly steep rise then (a) becomes even more difficult for any aspiring new entrant / developing business and makes (b) almost impossible as the figures against land at extreme values simply don’t add up. 

A major factor in the rise in land price must be down to what could be termed as “carbon speculation” as non-land-based businesses seek to offset their own carbon footprint by purchasing land largely for planting trees. We are keen to speak to businesses who are purchasing land for this purpose as the likelihood of 100% planting coverage is very unlikely and there must be options to create opportunities for new entrants on the unplanted land within that mix. 


September Update from SLMS.

With restrictions on movement having eased I have had the opportunity to visit two businesses that SLMS helped through the process of setting up a joint venture.

At the end of August, I had the opportunity to visit a small farm in Renfrewshire where I helped set up a joint venture agreement between the established farmer and someone who was looking for the opportunity to develop his small sheep enterprise.

I had first met with both parties in July 2020 and from there drew up a simple joint venture agreement for their consideration. That progressed and they have been up and running for around a year when I went back this year. It was interesting to hear their reflections on that first year and it was really clear that through effective and constant communication they have established a strong and trusting working relationship. I wish them well for the future.

Last Friday Allan and I supported Cabinet Secretary Mairi Gougeon on a visit to Rottal Estate in the Angus Glens near Kirriemuir courtesy of owner Dee Ward. SLMS assisted Dee in setting up a joint venture with Adrien Drocourt to develop an organic market garden at Rottal. The joint venture has been running since May and the quality and variety of vegetables being grown at 800ft up the Angus Glens is a real credit to the skills and enthusiasm that Adrien has brought to the table. That compliments well with Dee providing land and infrastructure as well as marketing and commercial know how. Cab Sec, Allan and I certainly enjoyed tasting some of the more unusual vegetables!

In between these visits Allan and I met up with Douglas Bell in his new role as managing Director of the Scottish Tenant Farmers Association (STFA). Really useful discussion on how to find opportunities for those looking to move forward from short term seasonal lets into something with a little more security that would allow better planning for development of their business. Joint ventures can play a part in delivering these opportunities. More broadly we agreed that if the opportunity arose for me to speak to further STFA meetings then I would be happy to do so to get the SLMS message of different ways of doing things out to a wider audience.

Ian Davidson