The Scottish Gamekeepers Association has given the following response to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's proposals for 'radical' land reform, warning that jobs of rural workers and their families will go if owners become 'targets'.
A Spokesman for The Scottish Gamekeepers Association said: “It is highly important, when considering land reform that Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish Government should see it as a duty to protect jobs of rural workers in fragile areas. Should it make land reform an ideological vehicle to punish landowners on sporting estates, the real affect will be to sacrifice the jobs of working people such as gamekeepers, stalkers and land and river ghillies, and their families, who will be the first people to suffer if investments are withdrawn and taken elsewhere.
“As has been shown recently with the Isle of Gigha, public money doesn’t always mean things are easy or futures necessarily sustainable. There has to be an acknowledgement that some rural business models already deliver successfully in the public interest.
“We welcome greater accountability of land ownership and trust this will also extend to charities and government agencies, who are sizeable landowners in Scotland.”