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The Scottish Government has been criticised for failing to include a crofting representative on the new National Council of Rural Advisors.


The body’s remit is to provide advice on the implications of Scotland leaving Europe as part of the UK and provide advice and recommendations on future rural policy and support.

Politicians and crofting representatives have questioned the make-up of the group, which sees no representative or expert from crofting included.


Rural affairs minister Fergus Ewing suggested that there would be no changes to the body and that members had “not been appointed to represent sectoral interests or particular stakeholder groups.”


However, stakeholders could instead “contribute policy papers and relevant research and analysis.”


Scottish Conservative MSP Donald Cameron said:

“I am disappointed that the Scottish Government have decided to shut the door to the crofting sector and not invite someone from crofting to sit on the new panel.


“The Scottish Government say that members weren’t appointed to represent sectoral interests yet there are several representatives from farming and agribusiness on this new Council, so frankly that argument doesn’t wash.”


Mr Cameron added: “It’s even more galling that Fergus Ewing, a SNP MSP who represents a constituency with a large number of crofts, has decided to snub the sector in this way.


“Many in crofting will see this as yet another example of a central-belt focused SNP Government that cares little for rural Scotland.”

Rural advisors forum excludes crofters

5 Sept 2017