Highlands & Islands

Constable appointed amid Lewis common grazing row

Ewe and lamb Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption Common grazings are areas of land shared by crofters for raising livestock

A grazings constable has been appointed to manage land on the Isle of Lewis at the centre of a dispute between the Crofting Commission and crofters.

Upper Coll grazings committee was dismissed last month by the commission amid a row about its accounts.

Former committee members say they have done nothing wrong and are preparing to challenge the dismissal in court.

A constable is a person appointed by the commission to administer common grazings in the absence of a committee.

'Widespread resentment'

The Crofting Commission, crofting's regulatory body, said it would not be commenting further on live cases and has urged shareholders in common grazings to work together to resolve any disputes.

A spokesman added that shareholders and committees which adhere strictly to their own grazings regulations need not be concerned.

The Scottish Crofting Federation, a group that represents crofters' interest, said the commission's behaviour in the row was causing "widespread resentment and bewilderment".

Common grazings are areas of land shared by crofters and others who hold a right to graze stock on that land.

There are more than 1,000 common grazings covering at total of 500,000ha across Scotland, according to the Crofting Commission.

Grazing committees manage these areas of land and their members are elected by crofters.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites