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BEFS NEWS

Historic Environment Scotland have launched their search for a new CEO. They are seeking an ambitious, inspirational, and transformational leader who will embed a culture of innovation, enterprise, and teamwork. There have been reappointments of Terry Levinthal, Andrew Davis, and Emma Herd as members of the Historic Environment Scotland board.

Hosted by Historic Environment Scotland and the Scottish Government on behalf of Scottish Ministers, the Scottish Historic Environment Forum (SHEF) took place in Stirling last week, bringing together over 100 representatives from across the sector to explore next steps for and delivery of Scotland’s Strategy for the Historic Environment, Our Past Our Future. BEFS director, Ailsa Macfarlane was invited to speak and presented an overview of how delivery of the strategy can be fully integrated within the wider policy landscape, and the opportunities that this presents for sector advocacy. Look out for BEFS producing a graphic of inter-related policies shortly!

First Minister, Humza Yousaf carried out a mini reshuffle in early February. BEFS welcome Kaukab Stewart as the new Minister for Culture, Europe, and International Development. Ms Stewart is the first woman of colour appointed to a ministerial role in the Scottish Government and takes the place of the most recent Culture Minister, Christina McKelvie, who has taken up the post of Minister for Drugs and Alcohol Policy.

It is of note that the Scottish government has merged two portfolios to create a single department responsible for net zero, energy and the economy, with the First Minister stating that: “The new, green economy is a massive economic opportunity for Scotland. If we grasp it, we can help the world tackle climate change while delivering well-paid jobs and sustainable growth in Scotland for generations to come. That is why we will now bring these two portfolios together.” This move may streamline some approaches but other aspects such as ‘Fair Work’ and ‘Just Transition’ seem to have lost their place amongst Cabinet and Ministerial titles – with the Wellbeing Economy moniker doing the heavy-lifting for all facets. Whilst Net Zero and the Economy are rightly linked, the tie to Energy may direct thinking (and funding) down ever narrower pathways which fail to fully consider our existing buildings and places.

BEFS is pleased to note that there is a little hope to be found in the recent Scottish Government publication Culture in an independent Scotland – where it was good to see the historic environment strongly represented with both the importance of heritage itself, as well as tourism, and the contribution towards Net Zero highlighted.

When considering complexity of issues, we would like to draw attention to this short article from Jocelyne Fleming at CIOB: Draft cladding legislation has uncovered an uncomfortable truth. Here we can see that Cladding legislation does indeed uncover both what we know (data), how we assess (single building assessments), and what options there might be for the future of building (and occupant) safety and health.

And finally, The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarded £10.7 million to help the Cairngorms National Park become the UK’s first net zero national park. Cairngorms 2030 is a programme that will bring together 20 long-term projects on nature restoration, active travel and sustainable transport, community development, health, and wellbeing.

 

CONSULTATIONS

Devolving powers for a Scottish Building Safety Levy
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government announced in its 2023-24 Programme for Government that it was seeking the transfer of powers from the UK Government to create an equivalent tax to the UK Government’s Building Safety Levy.
This consultation, launched jointly by the UK Government and Scottish Government, invites views and evidence in relation to the proposal to devolve the requisite powers to the Scottish Parliament.
Closes 19 February 2024

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities, and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Managing Change Underwater Heritage
Historic Environment Scotland
Views are being sought on the draft Managing Change guidance on Underwater Heritage. The aim of this guidance is to be a practical guide on increasing the understanding of underwater heritage along with identifying and managing the impacts of change in underwater heritage, while protecting the cultural significance of these issues. The new Underwater Heritage guidance will be part of the Managing Change in the Historic Environment guidance series. This guidance will be relevant to underwater marine planning, including work on the new National Marine Plan 2.
Closes 5 March 2024

Home Energy Model: replacement for the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP)
UK Government
The Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) is the methodology currently used by the government to estimate the energy performance of homes across the United Kingdom. The Home Energy Model will replace the SAP for the energy rating of dwellings. This is a consultation on the Model while it is still at a formative stage, so that industry can participate in the development process.
Closes 6 March 2024

Social Housing Net Zero Standard in Scotland
Scottish Government
The social housing sector has led the way on energy efficiency in recent years and is well placed to build on this further while building in longer term ambition to transition to clean heating. This consultation seeks views on a new Social Housing Net Zero Standard (SHNZS) in Scotland. This new standard will replace the second Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing (EESSH2).
Closes 8 March 2024

Proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill
Scottish Government
There is no way to meet a legal obligation to reach ‘net zero’ without changing the heating systems in most buildings. The purpose of this consultation is to make everyone aware of the proposal to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work, and to invite views on those proposals.
Closes 8 March 2024

Scotland’s draft Circular Economy and Waste Route Map to 2030
Scottish Government
This consultation invites views on the proposed priorities to accelerate more sustainable use of our resources, support delivery of a circular economy to 2030, and reduce emissions associated with resources and waste. It outlines what the Scottish Government intend to do, by when, and how they will work with others, to drive sustainable use and management of our resources, and delivery of Scotland’s circular economy up to 2030. The direction and actions set out in this Route Map are complemented by the Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill and its provisions.
Closes 15 March 2024

Guidance on inclusive design for town centres and busy streets
Scottish Government
When the design of town centres and busy street environments does not fully consider the needs of all members of the community, people may become excluded from these areas and the essential functions that they provide. Potential barriers to access should be removed and not included in any scheme. This draft guidance was developed in response to research which identified that street design should consider the needs of everyone and should consider all Protected Characteristics under the Equality Act 2010.
Closes 29 March 2024

Managing the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh World Heritage Site
The City of Edinburgh Council
The Old and New Towns of Edinburgh were given World Heritage Status in 1995; recognising the striking contrast and quality in architecture between the medieval Old Town and the Georgian New Town. A Management Plan identifies issues and opportunities within the World Heritage Site and sets out priority areas for action to preserve and enhance the site. While the Management Plan covers a ten-year period, an action plan is developed alongside it focusing on a two-year period. The City of Edinburgh Council would like to hear your views on the new plan, specifically whether you feel they are doing enough to protect and enhance the Site, and any other ideas or suggestions which you may have.
*NEW* Closes 8 April

Scottish National Adaptation Plan (2024-2029)
Scottish Government
The effects of climate change are already being felt by people in Scotland. That is why, as well as taking action to reduce emissions, we must also take steps to adapt to climate change. This consultation seeks your views on the Scottish National Adaptation Plan 2024-29. The final Adaptation Plan will only be effective if it is informed by Scots’ local and lived experience of climate change. During the public consultation period on this draft Adaptation Plan a formal public consultation will be opened on the Scottish Government’s ‘Citizen Space.’ Alongside this the Scottish Government will run a series of events tailored to both delivery partners and the public, to gather a wide range of views on the policy proposals in this draft Adaptation Plan.
Closes 24 April 2024

 

CONSULTATION RESPONSES

Budget Scrutiny 2024-25: Funding for Culture Published responses (Scot Parl February 2024)

Planning Ambitions: Findings from the Call for Ideas on Planning Performance (Improvement Service February 2024)

Building warrant fees: consultation outcome report (Scot Gov 08/02/2024)
Report on the outcomes of the 2023 building warrant fees consultation.

Building warrant fees: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 08/02/2024)

 

PETITIONS

Scottish Government submission on PE2075: Prioritise local participation in planning decisions (Scot Gov 31/01/2024)

 

NEWS RELEASES

Social values of National Trust for Scotland heritage places: Towards an organisational approach. Phase One Research Underway (University of Stirling & National Trust for Scotland 19/01/2024)

Climate Emergency ‘Deep Dive’ (National Heritage Science Forum 24/01/2024)

11 organisations call for embodied carbon regulation manifesto commitments (Planning, Building & Construction Today 01/02/2024)

FAI Economic Commentary 2023 Q4 (Fraser of Allander 07/02/2024)

Cairngorms National Park Awarded £10.7 Million to become UK’s First Net Zero Park through the delivery of Cairngorms 2030 (Cairngorms National Park Authority 05/02/2024)

 

PUBLICATIONS

Series 2 Issue 3: Report on Local Authority Historic Environment Staff Resources 2023 (Historic England 05/02/2024)

Industry calls for action on the just transition from Scottish Government (BE-ST & CLF 07/02/2024)
Report exploring the industry’s response to the Scottish Government’s Just Transition Discussion Paper for the Built Environment and Construction.

Enhancing our understanding of short-term rental activity (PLOS One 07/02/2024)
A daily scrape-based approach for Airbnb listings.

Rewiring Scotland (Our Scottish Future 13/02/2024)

 

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

Correspondence between the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee and the Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, External Affairs and Culture regarding the Budget 2024-25 (Scot Parl 29/01/2024)

Scottish Budget 2024-25: pre-budget scrutiny undertaken by the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee (Scot Parl 30/01/2024)

Correspondence between the Minister for Housing and the Convenor of the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee regarding Short-term let licence application levels across Scotland (Scot Parl 30/01/2024)

Correspondence between the Convenor of the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee and Katie Hagmann, COSLA Resources Spokesperson regarding Budget scrutiny 2024-25 (Scot Parl 30/01/2024)

Correspondence between the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition and the Convenor of the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee regarding the consultation on a draft Scottish National Adaptation Plan (Scot Parl 30/01/2024)

The Repairing Standard Statutory Guidance (Scot Gov 31/01/2024)

Culture in an independent Scotland (Scot Gov 01/02/2024)

Chair and Land Commissioners appointed to the Scottish Land Commission (Scot Gov 01/02/2024)

Auditor General: Decarbonising Heat in Homes (Audit Scotland 01/02/2024)

Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC):Cross Sector Working Group minutes December 2023 (Scot Gov 01/02/2024)

Scottish Budget 2023 to 2024: spring budget revision (Scot Gov 01/02/2024)

Business Insights and Conditions Survey weighted Scotland estimates: data to wave 100 (Scot Gov 02/02/2024)

Members reappointed to Historic Environment Scotland Board (Scot Gov 02/02/2024)

Long-Term Plan for Towns: toolkit for Town Boards in Scotland (UK Gov 05/02/2024)

Planning permission appeals: housing development statistics (Scot Gov 06/02/2024)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee  5th Meeting, 2024 (Session 6), Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill Evidence session with the Minister for Housing (Scot Parl 06/02/2024)

Correspondence between the Director of the UK Collaborative Centre for Housing and the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee regarding the impact of The 2024-25 Housing Budget and Delivering Housing to 2040 (Scot Parl 06/02/2024)

Local government finance: Budget 2024-25 and provisional allocations to local authorities (Scot Parl 06/02/2024)

Green Heat Finance Taskforce minutes: 29 November 2023 (Scot Gov 06/02/2024)

Government confirms plans to permanently remove RAAC from all schools and colleges in England (UK Gov 08/02/2024)

Planning Applications Statistics 2023/24: Quarterly [April 2023 to September 2023] (Scot Gov 14. /02/2024)

 

OPINION & COMMENT

Religious heritage: whose heritage? for whom? (Future for Religious Heritage 29/01/2024)

Draft cladding legislation has uncovered an uncomfortable truth (Scottish Construction News 31/01/2024)

Manifesto for Housing 2024 (CaCHE 31/01/2024)

Scottish Government urged to scrap council tax freeze by town halls after talks deadlock (Daily Record 01/02/2024)

The story of how Glasgow became the UK’s archetypal motorway city (BBC Sounds 03/02/2024)

Lorna Slater urged to tackle Scotland’s ‘huge climate blind spot’ (The Herald 04/02/2024)

New lottery operator unable to meet pledged targets (Arts Professional 05/02/2024)

A lost decade for home insulation (New Economics Foundation 06/02/2024)

What a new plan to save the UK’s churches says about their purpose in society (The Conversation 07/02/2024)

The stunning Church of Scotland properties currently up for sale (The Herald 07/02/2024)

Blog: Scrapping the Council Tax is Straightforward (Andy Wightman 08/02/2024)

Is this the end of the finest art nouveau building in Britain? (The Times 08/02/2024)

Call for UK utility firms to face higher fines for ‘street scars’ on pavements (The Guardian 09/02/2024)

‘Vital’ cash boost for landmark Glasgow church sees HUGE plans in the pipeline (Glasgow Times 13/02/2024)

Town centres are in decline – why is this happening? (The Herald 14/02/2024)

 

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Link to Parliamentary Questions and Answers

 

MOTIONS

S6M-12138
Submitted by: Evelyn Tweed, Stirling, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 12/02/2024
That the Parliament congratulates Historic Environment Scotland on becoming the first heritage organisation in Scotland to be accredited for its commitment to LGBT+ inclusivity by being awarded the LGBT Charter Foundation Award by LGBT Youth Scotland; understands that Historic Environment Scotland achieved the charter mark through an extensive analysis of its policy and practices by LGBT Youth Scotland to ensure that the organisation works with an inclusive framework and that this included delivering training and live workshops to staff across the organisation at more than 300 sites that they care for, including Stirling Castle and Doune Castle in the Stirling constituency, and further understands that Historic Environment Scotland has committed to building on the lessons learned during the process to further develop an inclusive organisation for all staff and visitors.

S6M-12103
Submitted by: George Adam, Paisley, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 07/02/2024
That the Parliament agrees that Jamie Greene be appointed to replace Sharon Dowey as a member of the Public Audit Committee.
Status: Taken in the Chamber on 8 February 2024

S6M-12104
Submitted by: George Adam, Paisley, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 07/02/2024
That the Parliament agrees that Brian Whittle be appointed to replace Graham Simpson as the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party substitute on the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee; and
Graham Simpson be appointed to replace Brian Whittle as the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party substitute on the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee.
Status: Taken in the Chamber on 8 February 2024

 

EVENTS

For further listings, please see our events calendar

Keep Scotland Beautiful – Heat in Buildings consultation events
Date & Time: Various – from Monday 29 January to Tuesday 5 March 2024
Location: Sites across Scotland and online
Keep Scotland Beautiful are holding several public events across Scotland as part of the Scottish Government’s consultation on proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill, these are vital for people to learn what is being proposed in this consultation and share opinions through facilitated discussion.

Under One Roof – Tenement Repair and Retrofit Webinar: South Ayrshire
Date & Time: Wednesday 21 February 2024; 12-1:30pm
Location: Online
Join Under One Roof for a free and informative event, in partnership with South Ayrshire Council, aimed at owner-occupiers and landlords who want to learn more about maintaining and managing their tenement building. Topics covered will include tenement maintenance and common repair management. There will be presentations from Under One Roof’s tenement experts, as well as a Q&A session.

SHBT – New Towns: an ambiguous Scottish and global heritage
Date & Time: Wednesday 21 February 2024; 6-7:30pm
Location: Riddles Court, 322 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PG
Come along and hear ongoing findings from the ‘Building a Modern Scotland’ research team, in this presentation by Dr Diane Watters, Dr Valerie Wright and Prof Miles Glendinning. The session sets the Scottish postwar New Towns programme in its wider international context, first by focusing on the original concept and later vicissitudes of Cumbernauld, the most internationally renowned of the series, and then by more briefly glancing at one fragment of its wider global impact.

RIAS (Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland) BookshopLATES: Pevsner Buildings of Scotland-Lothian
Date & Time: Wednesday 21 February 2024; 6-7pm
Location: RIAS, 15 Rutland Square, Edinburgh EH1 2BE
Join authors Jane Geddes, Aonghus Mackechnie and Ian Gow and photographer Steve Wallace for a discussion of their recent work revising the Pevsner Buildings of Scotland Guide to Lothian. Hear about the wonderfully diverse architecture of the region and discover how much has changed since Colin McWilliam’s pioneering volume was originally published in 1978.

UCL – Energy retrofits and traditional buildings: Let’s keep things in proportion
Date & Time: Thursday 22 February 2024; 5:30-6:30pm
Location: Online
What should we do to reduce the energy use and carbon footprint of traditional buildings, particularly heritage ones? Some people want to do nothing; others to apply draconian standards. Join University College London for a virtual guest lecture with Bill Bordass, Research, and policy adviser at the Usable Buildings Trust.

AHSS Lecture – Hill House, Helensburgh
Date & Time: Thursday 22 February 2024; 7:30-9pm
Location: St Andrews West Church & Renfield Centre, 260 Bath Street, Glasgow G2 4JP. Also streamed online via Zoom.
Liz Davidson, Project Director for the house, talks about the ongoing consolidation and conservation undertaken by the National Trust for Scotland. Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £5 / students £2 /

RSA Scotland – Fellows Festival
Date & Time: Thursday 29 February 2024; 2-6pm
Location: French Institute of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1RN
All are welcome to join the RSA Fellowship for the 2024 Fellows Festival event in Scotland.
The theme of inspiring inclusion is going to take centre stage in this packed programme of speakers and topics to engage, motivate and excite. As the organisation embarks on their 270th anniversary year, they will demonstrate how our heritage has defined their commitment to courage, reflecting on how three centuries of social impact has shaped our behaviour and looking at how we can be even braver and bolder in our social change ambitions.

AHSS Lecture – Context and Re-Use: Two Projects in Edinburgh’s New Town
Date & Time: Monday 11 March 2024; 6:30-8pm
Location: Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL (wheelchair accessible). Also streamed online via Zoom.
Alasdair Graham, Partner at David Chipperfield Architects, London, presents two of the practice’s current projects in Edinburgh: the renovation and extension of Jenners department store and the new concert hall, the Dunard Centre, both located within the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The lecture outlines David Chipperfield Architects’ approach to working in sensitive urban contexts and re-use projects. Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £5 / students £2 /

SHBT – Panel discussion: Concrete Conversations: The Conservation of Scottish Modernism
Date & Time: Wednesday 13 March 2024; 6-7:30pm
Location: Riddles Court, 322 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PG
How do, and could, we preserve modern architecture? How can a conservation movement which originated two centuries ago with the preservation of ancient monuments engage with buildings and environments of a vastly different sort today? This panel event concludes a series on conserving Scottish Modernism by bringing together current leaders in architectural conservation in Scotland to discuss how the organisations and frameworks with which they work might address the evolving question of caring for the past, in the present.

SURF Awards – Shared Learning Workshops
Shared learning workshops with contributions from the winner and highly commended projects in the Removing Barriers to Employability, Housing and Regeneration, Improving Scotland’s Places and Community Led Regeneration, and Creative Regeneration categories in the 2023 SURF Awards.
Removing barriers to employability: SURF Awards Shared Learning Workshop
Date & Time: Thursday 2 May 2024; 10am-1:30pm
Location: Glasgow Women’s Library, 23 Landressy St, Bridgeton, Glasgow G40 1BP
Effective approaches to housing led regeneration – SURF Award Shared Learning Event
Date & Time: Thursday 9 May 2024; 10am-1:30pm
Location: Grassmarket Centre, 86 Candlemaker Row, Edinburgh EH1 2QA
Delivering place-based regeneration initiatives: SURF Awards Shared Learning Workshop
Date & Time: Thursday 16 May 2024; 10am-1:30pm
Location: Kinning Park Complex, 43 Cornwall St, Glasgow G41 1BA
Using creativity in regeneration: SURF Awards Shared Learning Workshop
Date & Time: Thursday 23 May 2024; 10am-1:30pm
Location: Civic House, 26 Civic St, Glasgow G4 9RH

 

TRAINING

Stirling City Heritage Trust – Level 3 Award in Energy Efficiency for Older and Traditional Buildings – Retrofit Course
Date and Time: Wednesday 28 & Thursday 29 February 2024; 9am-4:30pm
Location: 2-day course at Enterprise House, Springkerse Business Park, Stirling FK7 7UF
The course will be delivered by Professor John Edwards, an expert in sustainable buildings, having helped develop British Standard (BS7913) for older and traditional buildings and was involved in producing BSI PAS 2030, PAS 2035 and PAS 2038. The course cost is being subsidised through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund as part of the SCHT Retrofit Project and Historic Environment Scotland. The subsidised course fee is £300 (normally £690) & includes: Course fee, course e-book and an examination fee.

C&BS – Introduction to being a Board Member (March course)
Date and Time: Thursday 7 & 14 March 2024; 10am-1pm
Location: Online
Do you have new trustees who have joined your Board recently or have you taken on a trustee role yourself? This course covers everything you need to know to launch your Board career, from trustee duties, roles, meeting management, advocacy and fundraising to strategic planning, finances and much more!

 

VACANCIES

The Heritage Trust Network – Volunteering opportunities
Youth Forum
The Heritage Trust Network is seeking young people aged 18-30 who are interested in the rescue, restoration and management of historic buildings, structures and places who want their voice heard in the heritage sector. Volunteers will be involved in: shaping the new Youth Forum; creating recommendations and advice to help members involve young people in heritage in a democratic way; co-designing, leading and taking part in online and in-person events; and creating online content including social media posts, blogs or vlogs
If you are interested in joining, please fill out a short application form here
Digital Heroes Project Volunteer
Are you digitally skilled, interested in helping heritage organisations and available to volunteer? The Heritage Trust Network are seeking people based in Scotland to join their Digital Heroes project which matches up digitally skilled young people with one of their member organisations to help them undertake a digital project. Examples include doing social media posts, digitising an archive or creating a digital marketing plan. If you are interested in volunteering as a digital hero, please fill out a short application form here

 

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Get The Latest Built Environment News, Policy Developments, Publications & Consultations

BEFS NEWS

Watch this space: with the 2024 Scottish Historic Environment Forum (SHEF) meeting next week, we look forward to hearing the address from Minister Christina McKelvie MSP, and bringing readers further details of Our Past Our Future (OPOF) delivery planning in due course.

Considering matters of strategy delivery, A Culture Strategy for Scotland: Action Plan was recently released. This document significantly updates the Culture Strategy and notes the substantial work across the heritage sector in relation to green recovery and traditional skills. There is much about collaborative working and obvious synergy with Our Past Our Future.

January has been a busy month at BEFS. The Places of Worship Forum met mid-month to further address the strategic future for places of worship. With growing public attention in this area we are extremely mindful of the steps necessary to support both heritage and communities during this time of transition. It was interesting to see the recent asks from the National Churches Trust: Every Church Counts: A Six Point Plan to Save the UK’s Church Buildings.

The Conservation Officers Group also met in the last few weeks; as ever many topics are raised for future discussion. An area of interest which is always of note is data around planning decisions, and greater understanding of consistency of decision making. It might be of interest to readers to further explore the Spatial Information Service | Improvement Service. There are many aspects to the data work of the Improvement Service, but (some) planning data is part of what they gather – the local authority specific hub can be found here.

When it comes to decision making, the Architectural Heritage Society of Scotland have issued a call to South Ayrshire Council for transparency and preservation of the remaining North Wing and clock tower of Ayr Station Hotel, a historically significant landmark. Following the fire at the hotel in September 2023, concerns have now been raised over the lack of transparency in the decision-making process concerning the demolition of the South Wing of the hotel.

All local authorities have been challenged by the recent investigations around Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC).  Concerns have been raised about the use of RAAC in the construction of public buildings; mostly in flat roofing between the 1950s and 1990s. Aberdeen City Council has produced a straightforward FAQ guide for those concerned about their property. Please see the full guide here – RAAC Council Housing – Aberdeen City Council.

And finally, BEFS team are delighted to welcome Malini Chakrabarty who joins us this week as Communications Lead. Malini has extensive experience in digital communications in addition to an academic background in media and public policy research; so look out for exciting new communications initiatives from BEFS this year.

 

CONSULTATIONS

A Feasibility Study of Regional Materials Reuse Hubs in Scotland
Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists Scotland
Net Positive Solutions, and consortia partners BE-ST, Green Thinking Ltd and The Rebuild Site have been appointed by Zero Waste Scotland to build on existing research regarding the viability of reuse hubs, part of which is to better understand the willingness and the ability of the construction industry and associated organisations in Scotland to supply materials to and source materials from a reuse hub. As part of the work, they are looking to gain insights across Scotland on the demand for physical or virtual reuse centres, how these could work within your region, what the barriers are and what material could be reused and repurposed most effectively.
*NEW* Closes 5 February 2024

Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government is gathering views to help inform the scope of any legislation for a proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill. The Bill aims to further improve decision making and the implementation of the National Performance Framework to ensure that all policy and delivery is focused on increasing the wellbeing of people living in Scotland, both now and in the future.
Closes 14 February 2024

Devolving powers for a Scottish Building Safety Levy
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government announced in its 2023-24 Programme for Government that it was seeking the transfer of powers from the UK Government to create an equivalent tax to the UK Government’s Building Safety Levy. This consultation, launched jointly by the UK Government and Scottish Government, invites views and evidence in relation to the proposal to devolve the requisite powers to the Scottish Parliament.
Closes 19 February 2024

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities, and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Managing Change Underwater Heritage
Historic Environment Scotland
Views are being sought on the draft Managing Change guidance on Underwater Heritage. The aim of this guidance is to be a practical guide on increasing the understanding of underwater heritage along with identifying and managing the impacts of change in underwater heritage, while protecting the cultural significance of these issues. The new Underwater Heritage guidance will be part of the Managing Change in the Historic Environment guidance series. This guidance will be relevant to underwater marine planning, including work on the new National Marine Plan 2.
Closes 5 March 2024

Home Energy Model: replacement for the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP)
UK Government
The Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) is the methodology currently used by the government to estimate the energy performance of homes across the United Kingdom. The Home Energy Model will replace the SAP for the energy rating of dwellings. This is a consultation on the Model while it is still at a formative stage, so that industry can participate in the development process.
Closes 6 March 2024

Social Housing Net Zero Standard in Scotland
Scottish Government
The social housing sector has led the way on energy efficiency in recent years and is well placed to build on this further while building in longer term ambition to transition to clean heating. This consultation seeks views on a new Social Housing Net Zero Standard (SHNZS) in Scotland. This new standard will replace the second Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing (EESSH2).
Closes 8 March 2024

Proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill
Scottish Government
There is no way to meet a legal obligation to reach ‘net zero’ without changing the heating systems in the vast majority of buildings. The purpose of this consultation is to make everyone aware of the proposal to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work, and to invite views on those proposals.
Closes 8 March 2024

Scotland’s draft Circular Economy and Waste Route Map to 2030
Scottish Government
This consultation invites views on the proposed priorities to accelerate more sustainable use of our resources, support delivery of a circular economy to 2030, and reduce emissions associated with resources and waste. It outlines what the Scottish Government intend to do, by when, and how they will work with others, to drive sustainable use and management of our resources, and delivery of Scotland’s circular economy up to 2030. The direction and actions set out in this Route Map are complemented by the Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill and its provisions.
*NEW* Closes 15 March 2024

Guidance on inclusive design for town centres and busy streets
Scottish Government
When the design of town centres and busy street environments does not fully take into account the needs of all members of the community, people may become excluded from these areas and the essential functions that they provide. Potential barriers to access should be removed and not included in any scheme. This draft guidance was developed in response to research which identified that street design should consider the needs of everyone and should take into account all Protected Characteristics under the Equality Act 2010.
Closes 29 March 2024

Scottish National Adaptation Plan (2024-2029)
Scottish Government
The effects of climate change are already being felt by people in Scotland. That is why, as well as taking action to reduce emissions, we must also take steps to adapt to climate change. This consultation seeks your views on the Scottish National Adaptation Plan 2024-29. The final Adaptation Plan will only be effective if it is informed by Scots’ local and lived experience of climate change. During the public consultation period on this draft Adaptation Plan a formal public consultation will be opened on the Scottish Government’s ‘Citizen Space’. Alongside this the Scottish Government will run a series of events tailored to both delivery partners and the general public, to gather a wide range of views on the policy proposals in this draft Adaptation Plan.
*NEW* Closes 24 April

 

CONSULTATION RESPONSES

Additional Dwelling Supplement – change proposals: consultation analysis and Scottish Government response (Scot Gov 19/01/2024)

A Human Rights Bill for Scotland: consultation analysis  (Scot Gov 24/01/2024)

 

NEWS RELEASES

Fairburn Tower Refurbishment Project Completed for Landmark Trust (Narro Associates January 2024)

Register of Community Interests in Land – Community Bodies (RCIL-CB) (Registers of Scotland January 2024)

RIBA awards Royal Gold Medal 2024 to Professor Lesley Lokko (RIBA 18/01/2024)

Government must act now to protect tenants from ‘catastrophic’ impact of poor housing on health, warn MPs (UK Gov Health & Social Care Committee 19/01/2024)

AHSS Advocates Transparency and Preservation in Ayr Station Hotel Demolition Crisis (AHSS 22/01/2024)

Over a quarter of Scotland’s households in housing need (Homes for Scotland News 22/01/2024)

Number of Homes Insulated Through Government’s Landmark Schemes Drops 40% in a Single Year (New Economics Foundation 26/01/2024)

Europa Nostra and EIB Institute announce heritage sites in Europe shortlisted for the 7 Most Endangered Programme 2024 (Europa Nostra 30/01/2024)

 

PUBLICATIONS

New-build housing – how regulation can improve the consumer journey (CIOB December 2023)

Improving Energy Efficiency in Traditional Buildings: Guidance for Specifiers and Installers (Government of Ireland December 2023)

How changes to the immigration system could impact your firm (CBI 08/12/2023)

Report: Guidelines on innovative/emerging cultural heritage education and training paths (European Cultural Heritage Skills Alliance 27/12/2023)

Construction Leadership Forum: Transformation Action Plan (CLF January 2024)

Every Church Counts: A Six Point Plan to Save the UK’s Church Buildings (National Churches Trust January 2024)

Cities Outlook 2024 (Centre for Cities 22/01/2024)

What’s the impact of different forms of energy subsidies in crisis time? (Fraser of Allender Institute 24/01/2024)

Architecture and Design Scotland’s 2023 Annual Review (A&DS 30/01/2024)

 

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

A Culture Strategy for Scotland: Action Plan (Scot Gov December 2023)

House of Commons Health and Social Care Committee. Prevention in health and social care: healthy places First Report of Session 2023–24 (UK Gov 16/01/2024)

Infrastructure investment plan 2021-2022 to 2025-2026: carbon assessment (Scot Gov 17/01/2024)

Empire, Slavery and Scotland’s Museums (Scot Gov 22/01/2024)

Planning permission appeals: housing development statistics (Scot Gov 23/01/2024)

Development plan examinations: list (Scot Gov 23/01/2024)

Correspondence between the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee, Paul McLennan and Patrick Harvie regarding Housing to 2040 (Scot Gov 24/01/2024)

Rise in international visits: Overseas travel and tourism statistics published for Q3 2023 (Scot Gov 24/01/2024)

Scotland’s International Strategy (Scot Gov 24/01/2024)

Correspondence between the Director-General Scottish Exchequer and Public Audit Committee regarding Infrastructure Investment (Scot Gov 29/01/2024)

Infrastructure Investment Plan 2021-22 to 2025-26: major capital projects progress update – December 2023 (Scot Gov 29/01/2024)

Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC): Cross Sector Working Group minutes 25 October 2023 (Scot Gov 29/01/2024)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee 4th Meeting, 2024 (Session 6),
Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill Second evidence session with stakeholders: Clerk’s Note (Scot Gov 30/01/2024)

Scottish Fiscal Commission Report on Spending Trends in the 2024-25 Scottish Budget (Scot Gov 30/01/2024)

Rural Affairs and Islands Committee 3rd Meeting, 2024 (Session 6), Agriculture and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill: Clerk’s Note (Scot Gov 31/01/2024)

 

OPINION & COMMENT

City Talks Podcast: Are we seeing the arrival of the post-retail High Street? (Centre for Cities 11/01/2024)

Inverkeithing pupils create Fife’s future heritage (Scottish Construction Now 18/01/2024)

ScotGov rent rise curbs blamed for ‘forcing’ landlords out (The Herald 19/01/2024)

Hostile architecture is making our cities even less welcoming (The Observer 21/01/2024)

Church as estate agent is a sign of the times (BBC News 22/01/2024)

The Scottish Planning System – Learning to live with NPF4 (Brodies 22/01/2024)

Scotland’s historic sites down £10m in visitor income (The Scotsman 22/01/2024)

Stamp duty land tax, the tax paid on the purchase of a property, is among our worst and most damaging taxes (IFS 22/01/2024)

Are Britain’s Abandoned Churches Worth Saving? (Sky News 23/01/2024)

Scottish taxpayers coughing up £3.7m running costs for half empty Government buildings (Daily Record 24/01/2024)

Record number of solar and heat pump systems installed in Scotland in 2023 (STV News 25/01/2024)

What barriers are still in place for women in architecture? (RIBA 25/01/2024)

National heritage underpinning the world stage (Heritage Futures 26/01/2024)

Businesses, academics and researchers in Scotland urged to apply for grants worth £450,000 on average to fund research (STV News 29/01/2024)

 

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Link to Parliamentary Questions and Answers

 

MOTIONS

S6M-11928
Submitted by: Tom Arthur, Renfrewshire South, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 23/01/2024
That the Finance and Public Administration Committee recommends that the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (Miscellaneous Amendments) (Scotland) Order 2024 [draft] be approved.

 

EVENTS

For further listings, please see our events calendar

Society of Antiquaries of Scotland – Mesolithic catastrophe: the impact of the Storegga Slide tsunami on the Mesolithic population of Britain
Date & Time: Thursday 8 February 2024; 6-7pm
Location: Hybrid – Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge Edinburgh EH1 1EL and livestreamed via Zoom
This paper will explore events surrounding the largest marine megaslide tsunami so far recovered on the planet. Combined with the climatic cold period or ‘neoglacial’ within which it occurred known as the ‘8.2 kyr event’, it had significant effects on both the landscape, seascape as well as the human population of much of Britain. The Lecture will be presented by Dr Clive Waddington FSA MCIfA FSAScot.

AHSS Lecture – Phoenix Rising? A Reconstruction of Mavisbank with a View to Restoration
Date & Time: Monday 12 February 2024; 6.30-8pm
Location: Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL (wheelchair accessible). Also streamed online via Zoom.
Three centuries on since its founding, and fifty years since the fire that left Mavisbank a vulnerable shell, there is at last a real prospect of rescuing this internationally important place from oblivion. A forensic approach to research and analysis in the remarkable Clerk of Penicuik archive has enabled William Kay to create a full reconstruction of the original architecture, interiors, collections and designed landscape during Sir John Clerk’s tenure, 1723–1755. Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £5 / students £2 /

Heritage Trust Network – So You Want to Work in Heritage
Date & Time: Thursday 15 February 2024; 6:30pm
Location: Online via Zoom
The Heritage Trust Network Youth Forum’s next event will cover what professionals look for in job applications, apprenticeships, volunteering and case studies. The event will include advice and tips from established heritage professionals and those who read the application forms, and members of the Youth Forum will share their stories and experiences.

AHSS Lecture – Hill House, Helensburgh
Date & Time: Thursday 22 February 2024; 7.30-9pm
Location: St Andrews West Church & Renfield Centre, 260 Bath Street, Glasgow G2 4JP. Also streamed online via Zoom.
Liz Davidson, Project Director for the house, talks about the ongoing consolidation and conservation undertaken by the National Trust for Scotland. Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £5 / students £2 /

RSA Scotland – Fellows Festival
Date & Time: Thursday 29 February 2024; 2-6pm
Location: French Institute of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1RN
All are welcome to join the RSA Fellowship for the 2024 Fellows Festival event in Scotland.
The theme of inspiring inclusion is going to take centre stage in this packed programme of speakers and topics to engage, motivate and excite. As the organisation embarks on their 270th anniversary year, they will demonstrate how our heritage has defined their commitment to courage, reflecting on how nearly three centuries of social impact has shaped our behaviour and looking at how we can be even braver and bolder in our social change ambitions.

 

TRAINING

C&BS – Effective copywriting: from blank page to impactful story
Date and Time: Thursday 8 February 2024; 10am-4:30pm
Location: Thorn House, 5 Rose Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PR
This interactive online course blends practical writing exercises with essential tips and techniques, guiding you through the entire copywriting process: planning, structuring, drafting, editing, and proofing. While the course provides a specific focus on writing a case for support, the resulting learning can be applied to all kinds of fundraising and other communications.

Stirling City Heritage Trust – Level 3 Award in Energy Efficiency for Older and Traditional Buildings – Retrofit Course
Date and Time: Wednesday 28 & Thursday 29 February 2024; 9am-4:30pm
Location: 2-day course at Enterprise House, Springkerse Business Park, Stirling FK7 7UF
The course will be delivered by Professor John Edwards, an expert in sustainable buildings, having helped develop British Standard (BS7913) for older and traditional buildings and was involved in producing BSI PAS 2030, PAS 2035 and PAS 2038. The course cost is being subsidised through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund as part of the SCHT Retrofit Project and Historic Environment Scotland. The subsidised course fee is £300 (normally £690) & includes: Course fee, course e-book and an examination fee.

C&BS – Introduction to being a Board Member (March course)
Date and Time: Thursday 7 & 14 March 2024; 10am-1pm
Location: Online
Do you have new trustees who have joined your Board recently or have you taken on a trustee role yourself? This course covers everything you need to know to launch your Board career, from trustee duties, roles, meeting management, advocacy and fundraising to strategic planning, finances and much more!

 

VACANCIES

The Heritage Trust Network – Volunteering opportunities
Youth Forum
The Heritage Trust Network is seeking young people aged 18-30 who are interested in the rescue, restoration and management of historic buildings, structures and places who want their voice heard in the heritage sector. Volunteers will be involved in: shaping the new Youth Forum; creating recommendations and advice to help members involve young people in heritage in a democratic way; co-designing, leading and taking part in online and in-person events; and creating online content including social media posts, blogs or vlogs
If you are interested in joining, please fill out a short application form here
Digital Heroes Project Volunteer
Are you digitally skilled, interested in helping heritage organisations and available to volunteer? The Heritage Trust Network are seeking people based in Scotland to join their Digital Heroes project which matches up digitally skilled young people with one of their member organisations to help them undertake a digital project. Examples include doing social media posts, digitising an archive or creating a digital marketing plan. If you are interested in volunteering as a digital hero, please fill out a short application form here

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Get The Latest Built Environment News, Policy Developments, Publications & Consultations

BEFS NEWS

Happy New Year to all our readers. BEFS hope that January is treating you well and you’re managing to implement whatever resolutions you made for yourselves or your organisations. Speaking of which, as you read down you may notice that we have changed the way we present the parliamentary question section. BEFS team have been working on making this section more streamlined and interactive, allowing you to view the most recent and archived parliamentary questions that may be of interest to you. They can now be accessed via this live google sheets link which will be posted in all future bulletins. This new format means you can easily search by MSP name or constituency, as well as date.

The Intangible Cultural Heritage Scotland Partnership, involving Museums Galleries Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland, TRACS (Traditional Arts & Culture Scotland) and Creative Scotland, welcomed the UK Government’s announcement of their intention to ratify the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage. The partners look forward to continuing to collaborate to support understanding and recording of ICH and to extending that work as ratification is further explored.  The UK Government Press Release on Scotland’s ICH can be read here.

After the successful launch of other Place Standard Tool lenses focussed on climate change and air quality, Historic Environment Scotland have launched a pilot version of The Your Historic Place lens supported by the Place Standard Implementation Group. The pilot phase will run for approximately 6-9 months and HES are inviting those involved in place-making related projects to try it out; all feedback will be used to refine the final version of the lens.

Planning Aid Scotland have published their Guide for Community Delivery of Local Place Plans, designed to offer comprehensive support to communities who are in the process of developing a Local Place Plan. A full set of resources can be found here.

Across the Third Sector there remain challenges. The Executive Summary of the Scottish Third Sector Tracker – Waves 1-6 has been published, providing an overview of the key insights found, from August 2021 to April 2023. Trends relating to key challenges, financial health, service delivery, staffing and volunteering, and emerging needs have been identified, as well as insights into how organisations dealt with the crises that have affected the sector during this period.

Between January and March 2024, as part of the Heritage Sector Resilience Plan, the Historic Environment Forum (England) are publishing interviews on the theme of ‘Climate Change’ and are actively seeking collaborators who’d like to showcase how their work is contributing to longer term climate resilience in the heritage sector. Please contact the steering group to find out more.

The Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill (the consultation on which BEFS responded to in September 2023), is currently going through the Scottish Parliament and has passed its first vote. You can read about it here and watch the Stage 1 Debate taking place on the afternoon of Tuesday 26 January here. In more current consultations, BEFS draws your attention to the Heat in Buildings Bill Consultation where we expect there to be significant sector interest.

In appointments news, former Homes for Scotland Chief Executive, Nicola Barclay has been appointed the new Board Chair at BE-ST (Built Environment-Smarter Transformation). Meanwhile, Heritage Trust Network’s Development Officer for Scotland, Sarah Pearce, will be taking a short sabbatical in New Zealand until April 2024. In her absence, Heritage Trainee, Marissa Trimble, will be the main point of contact.

And finally, you can view some fascinating scenes from British films related to post-war reconstruction planning, and New Towns developed under the 1946 New Towns Act, which include East Kilbride and Cumbernauld.

 

CONSULTATIONS

Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government is gathering views to help inform the scope of any legislation for a proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill.
The Bill aims to further improve decision making and the implementation of the National Performance Framework to ensure that all policy and delivery is focused on increasing the wellbeing of people living in Scotland, both now and in the future.
Closes 14 February 2024

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities, and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Home Energy Model: replacement for the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP)
UK Government
The Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) is the methodology currently used by the government to estimate the energy performance of homes across the United Kingdom. The Home Energy Model will replace the SAP for the energy rating of dwellings. This is a consultation on the Model while it is still at a formative stage, so that industry can participate in the development process.
Closes 6 March 2024

Social Housing Net Zero Standard in Scotland
Scottish Government
The social housing sector has led the way on energy efficiency in recent years and is well placed to build on this further while building in longer term ambition to transition to clean heating. This consultation seeks views on a new Social Housing Net Zero Standard (SHNZS) in Scotland. This new standard will replace the second Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing (EESSH2).
Closes 8 March 2024

Proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill
Scottish Government
There is no way to meet a legal obligation to reach ‘net zero’ without changing the heating systems in the vast majority of buildings. The purpose of this consultation is to make everyone aware of the proposal to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work, and to invite views on those proposals.
Closes 8 March 2024

Devolving powers for a Scottish Building Safety Levy
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government announced in its 2023-24 Programme for Government that it was seeking the transfer of powers from the UK Government to create an equivalent tax to the UK Government’s Building Safety Levy.
This consultation, launched jointly by the UK Government and Scottish Government, invites views and evidence in relation to the proposal to devolve the requisite powers to the Scottish Parliament.
*NEW* Closes 19 February 2024

Managing Change Underwater Heritage
Historic Environment Scotland
Views are being sought on the draft Managing Change guidance on Underwater Heritage. The aim of this guidance is to be a practical guide on increasing the understanding of underwater heritage along with identifying and managing the impacts of change in underwater heritage, while protecting the cultural significance of these issues. The new Underwater Heritage guidance will be part of the Managing Change in the Historic Environment guidance series. This guidance will be relevant to underwater marine planning, including work on the new National Marine Plan 2.
*NEW* Closes 5 March 2024

Guidance on inclusive design for town centres and busy streets
Scottish Government
When the design of town centres and busy street environments does not fully take into account the needs of all members of the community, people may become excluded from these areas and the essential functions that they provide. Potential barriers to access should be removed and not included in any scheme. This draft guidance was developed in response to research which identified that street design should consider the needs of everyone and should take into account all Protected Characteristics under the Equality Act 2010.
*NEW* Closes 29 March 2024

Share your thoughts on the Antonine Wall management plan
Historic Environment Scotland
Historic Environment Scotland, who co-ordinates on the management of the Antonine Wall World Heritage Site, will host community consultation for locals to voice their opinions in each of the five local authorities crossed by the Wall. Have your say and book your place at one of a range of events being held from 22 January until 1 February 2024.

 

PETITIONS

Briefing in relation to petition PE2075: Prioritise local participation in planning decisions (SPICe 09/01/2024)

Briefing in relation to petition PE2063: Increase funding for local authorities to enable better management and protection of conservation areas (SPICe 10/01/2024)

 

NEWS RELEASES

Applications invited for the Costa Carras European Citizens Award for the Safeguard of Endangered Heritage 2024 (Europa Nostra 14/12/2023)

UK to ratify 2003 UNESCO Convention on Intangible Cultural Heritage (Heritage Crafts 23/12/2023)

Joint statement from Intangible Cultural Heritage Scotland Partnership (HES 27/12/2023)

Blog: Exploring Inverkeithing’s A-listed Trail (Heritage Trust Network January 2024)

CEO of VisitScotland to retire (VisitScotland 08/01/2024)

Mackintosh at the Willow joins the Trust (NTS 11/01/2024)

IHBC raises concerns in consultation response to HE’s draft Advice Note on Climate Change and Historic Building Adaptations (HEAN) (IHBC 12/01/2024)

Audit Scotland: Financial pressures push councils to make hard decisions about service cuts (Accounts Commission 16/01/2024)

 

PUBLICATIONS

How to improve cyber security within your charity – quickly, easily and at low cost (The National Cyber Security Centre December 2023)

CESAP Pathfinder A Dynamic Skills Response to Supporting the Transition to Net Zero (Skills Development Scotland November 2023)

Your Historic Place – A lens for the Place Standard Tool: Pilot Version (HES 23/11/2023)

Village and community halls handbook (SCVO 17/12/2023)

Heritage Sector Resilience Plan: Sector Interviews (HEF 18/12/2023)

Scottish Third Sector Tracker – Waves 1-6 Executive Summary (SCV0 19/12/2023)

Guide for Community Delivery of Local Place Plans (Planning Aid Scotland January 2024)

Financial Sustainability of Colleges and Universities (Scottish Funding Council 04/01/2024)

‘Building Stories’ – Alastair Wiper’s cinematic exploration of architectural narratives (Stir World 06/01/2024)

 

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

National Acquisition Programme: information (Scot Gov 11/12/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: COP28 climate change negotiations and how they connect to Scottish climate policy (SPICe 20/12/2023)

Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC): Cross Sector Working Group minutes – 21 September & Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC): Cross Sector Working Group minutes – 27 September  (Scot Gov 20/12/2023)

Correspondence between Shirley-Anne Somerville and the Convenor, Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee regarding RAAC (21/12/2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee: Stage 1 Report on Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 21/12/2023)

Funding package of £8m for the Community Ownership Fund in Scotland will go towards the protection of community places such as theatres, museums, and community centres (UK Gov 22/12/2023)

Scotland’s colleges 2023 – Written submission from Colleges Scotland to the Public Audit Committee regarding the Draft Budget (Scot Parl 22/12/2023)

Innovative planning projects short-listed (Scot Gov 27/12/2023)

Low Carbon Infrastructure Transition Programme: December 2023 (Scot Gov 29/12/2023)

Welsh traditions set to be formally recognised as UK joins UNESCO Convention (UK Gov 02/01/2024)

Energy efficiency drive for historic homes (UK Gov 03/01/2024)

Adapting historic homes for energy efficiency: a review of the barriers (UK Gov 03/01/2024)

Planning permission appeals: housing development statistics (Scot Gov 03/01/2024)

SPICe Spotlight: How is Scotland Performing? (SPICe 09/01/2024)

The Non-Domestic Rate (Scotland) Order 2024 (The National Archives 09/01/2024)

The Non-Domestic Rates (Levying and Miscellaneous Amendment) (Scotland) Regulations 2024 (The National Archives 09/01/2024)

The Non-Domestic Rates (Transitional Relief) (Scotland) Regulations 2024 (The National Archives 09/01/2024)

Local Government, Housing and Planning: Official Report (Scot Parl 09/01/2024)

Correspondence between George Adam and the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee on the anticipated timings for the introduction of the Land Reform Bill and laying of the draft Climate Change Plan (Scot Gov 12/01/2024)

Correspondence between Mairi Gougeon and the Delegated Powers and Law Reform Committee in response to a range of queries on delegated powers within the Agriculture and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill (Scot Gov 12/01/2024)

Planning and Environmental Appeals website: user guidance (Scot Gov 15/01/2024)

James Twining appointed Trustee and Audit and Risk Chair of the National Heritage Memorial Fund and The National Lottery Heritage Fund (UK Gov 15/01/2024)

Housing First monitoring report: April-September 2023 (Scot Gov 15/01/2024)

Correspondence between Tom Arthur and the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee regarding the Visitor Levy Bill (Scot Parl 15/01/2024)

SPICe Spotlight: Affordable Homes – Scottish Government budget and progress (SPICe 15/01/2024)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee 2nd Meeting 2024 (Scot Parl 16/01/2024)

Local government in Scotland Financial bulletin 2022/23 (Audit Scotland 16/01/2024)

Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC): Cross Sector Working Group minutes – 20 November 2023 (Scot Gov 16/01/2024)

Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill Stage One: Public Finance Minister’s statement (Scot Gov 16/01/2024)

Visitor levy legislation passes first stage (Scot Gov 17/01/2024)

Innovation at the heart of the Scottish economy (Scot Gov 17/01/2024)

 

OPINION & COMMENT

The three phases of the heat transition (Medium 23/11/2023)

Innovation in Edinburgh: Director Kate Wimpress describes her experience of community landownership at North Edinburgh Arts in Edinburgh (Community Land Scotland 18/12/2023)

What’s next for climate efforts in 2024? (New Economics Foundation 20/12/2023)

Welsh government cuts culture funding by 10% (Arts Professional 21/12/2023)

Reflections on the Scottish Government Budget for Culture 24-25 (Culture Counts 21/12/2023)

Construction apprentice support scheme ends after 90 years (Insider.co.uk 21/12/2023)

Mystery donor gives £2.4m to National Trust for Scotland (BBC News 21/12/2023)

‘Glasgow is a shipwreck’ – but there’s a plan to fix it (The Herald 22/12/2023)

Why should housing associations retrofit older properties now? (Lloyds Banking Group 22/12/2023)

Risky RAAC concrete now found in 1150 Scottish homes (The Ferret 22/12/2023)

On Dùthchas and the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (Bella Caledonia 23/12/2023)

‘Anchors in our landscapes’: secular Scotland is fast losing its churches (The Guardian 27/12/2023)

Venice should charge tourists at least €25 but make them proud to save the city (The Art Newspaper 29/12/2023)

Want to cut your bills? Old buildings can be part of the solution (The Herald 30/12/2023)

The community buyout projects leading Scotland’s self-help revolution (The Guardian 01/01/2024)

Will hotter heat pumps win over homeowners? (BBC News 02/01/2024)

Almost two-thirds of Scots train stations are not fully accessible for disabled people (The Scotsman 02/01/2024)

Reform of ‘archaic’ land ownership crucial to Scotland’s economic future, claims new report (The Scotsman 03/01/2024)

Going beyond the environmental argument for retrofitting (Project Scotland 04/01/2024)

The rise and fall of High Rise Edinburgh – a chronology of multi-storey, public housing in the city (Thread Edinburgh 05/01/2024)

Welsh Government urged to reconsider sweeping cuts to museums and heritage (Museums Association 05/01/2024)

David Bookbinder: Is the Scottish Government waving the white flag? (Scottish Housing News 09/01/2024)

Mackintosh tea room rescued by National Trust for Scotland (The Times 11/01/2024)

Tenement Maintenance Update – What’s Going On? (City Lets News 11/01/2024)

Scotland needs big thinking to tackle property woe (The Herald 12/01/2024)

Fife to host permanent national Building Standards Hub (Scottish Construction Now 12/01/2024)

Scotland’s empty homes estimated to be worth £3.4bn (Scottish Housing News 15/01/2024)

Structural engineers will help combat the climate crisis – Richard Campbell (The Scotsman 16/01/2024)

‘Sleeping’ whisky distillery could wake after 40 years as Historic Environment Scotland looks to produce national drink (The Scotsman 17/01/2024)

 

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Dear readers, we are changing the way we present parliamentary questions in the Bulletin. To make BEFS Bulletin more streamlined and to gather and archive the parliamentary questions that may be of interest to you in one accessible place, you will now find them in this live google sheets link.  The link will be posted in this section with every released Bulletin.

 

MOTIONS

S6M-11868
Submitted by: Annie Wells, Glasgow, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.
Date lodged: 15/01/2024
That the Parliament welcomes reports that Mackintosh at the Willow has been secured and protected for the long term, thanks to the National Trust for Scotland, with what it sees as the vital support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Royal Bank of Scotland, Architectural Heritage Fund, Glasgow City Council and Celia Sinclair Thornqvist and her husband, Rolf Thornqvist; understands that existing staff at Mackintosh at the Willow will transfer to the National Trust for Scotland on their current terms and conditions; further understands that Mackintosh at the Willow is the original and last remaining of Miss Cranston’s famous tea rooms, designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh alongside his wife, Margaret Macdonald, in 1903; believes that the tea rooms are a vital part of Glasgow’s social history, and are cited worldwide in architectural histories as one of the city’s most important contributions towards architecture and the arts, and that they were, alongside Mackintosh and Macdonald’s other works, highly influential in Europe and elsewhere, and acknowledges that the National Trust for Scotland is proud to add this property to its portfolio, alongside what it sees as Mackintosh’s other masterpiece, the Hill House, which is currently undergoing a major restoration programme.

S6M-11871
Submitted by: Tom Arthur, Renfrewshire South, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 15/01/2024
That the Parliament agrees to the general principles of the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill.

 

EVENTS

For further listings, please see our events calendar

RICS – World Built Environment Forum Week 2024
Date & Time: Monday 29 January – Thursday 1 February 2024
Location: Online
The World Built Environment Forum’s annual global gathering, WBEF Week, enables participants to engage in critical discussions about the direction of the built and natural environment with the people who are shaping it around the world. Over four days, participants will build a picture of how standards, policy, investment, data and technology are changing the landscape across energy, infrastructure, and the land and building life cycle. To conclude, WBEF Week 2024 will outline a practical approach to mobilising public and investor trust in new and emerging solutions.

Under One Roof Scotland – Heating flats: Policy updates and practical steps for tenement flat owners
Date & Time: Wednesday 31 January 2024 · 12-1:30pm
Location: Online
The Scottish Government is proposing to introduce regulations on minimum energy efficiency standards and ending the use of fossil fuel heating. What do these proposals mean for tenements and what might the options be for flat owners? In this webinar, Gillian Campbell from the Existing Homes Alliance and Fabrice Leveque, Climate and Energy Policy Manager at WWF Scotland will give an overview of the consultation proposals and the latest on plans for heat network zones.

Society of Antiquaries of Scotland – Mesolithic catastrophe: the impact of the Storegga Slide tsunami on the Mesolithic population of Britain
Date & Time: Thursday 8 February 2024; 6-7pm
Location: Hybrid – Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge Edinburgh EH1 1EL and livestreamed via Zoom
This paper will explore events surrounding the largest marine megaslide tsunami so far recovered on the planet. Combined with the climatic cold period or ‘neoglacial’ within which it occurred known as the ‘8.2 kyr event’, it had significant effects on both the landscape, seascape as well as the human population of much of Britain. The Lecture will be presented by Dr Clive Waddington FSA MCIfA FSAScot.

Heritage Trust Network – So You Want to Work in Heritage
Date & Time: Thursday 15 February 2024; 6:30pm
Location: Online via Zoom
The Heritage Trust Network Youth Forum’s next event will cover what professionals look for in job applications, apprenticeships, volunteering and case studies. The event will include advice and tips from established heritage professionals and those who read the application forms, and members of the Youth Forum will share their stories and experiences.

 

TRAINING

C&BS – How to fundraise effectively from trusts and foundations
Date & Time: Tuesday 23 & 30 January 2024; 10am-1pm
Location: Online
In this course Pam Judson will provide expert insight and advice on pursuing funding from trusts and foundations. The two-session course will cover giving trends in Scotland, researching the criteria and guidelines, writing effective applications, developing and maintaining relationships with an exit strategy, and also provide many practical templates and tips.

C&BS – Introduction to being a Board Member (January course)
Date & Time: Tuesday 30 January & 6 February 2024; 4-7pm
Location: Online
Do you have new trustees who have joined your Board recently or have you taken on a trustee role yourself? This course covers everything you need to know to launch your Board career, from trustee duties, roles, meeting management, advocacy and fundraising to strategic planning, finances and much more!

Development Trusts Association Scotland – Facilities Management Workshop
Date & Time: Tuesday 30 January & 6 February 2024; 9:30am-4pm
Location: Online
For anyone working in an operational role with facilities management responsibilities, the course will provide guidance, resources, tools and tips to help them in their roles. Written for Development Trust Association Scotland (DTAS) it will provide a practical overview of Facilities Management. Delivered by external consultant Beth Goodyear, with over 24 years of experience managing buildings and teams.

SLCT – Introduction to Maintaining Traditional Buildings
Date & Time: Tuesday 30 January 2024; 10am-3pm
Location: Charlestown Workshops, KY11 3EN
The course will outline the maintenance that traditional buildings require, and attendees will gain an understanding of traditional building techniques and the correct materials to use when undertaking repairs. This is also an excellent opportunity to speak to the SLCT’s expert tutors about your project; attendees are welcome to bring along photos and mortar samples for some specific advice.

SPAB – Understanding your old building
Date & Time: Monday 5 February – Saturday 16 March 2024
Location: Online course
Join SPAB for an introduction to the care and maintenance of period properties, ideal for homeowners and tenants of old buildings. This modular, self-paced online course features six pre-recorded presentations and a live Q&A session. It introduces the SPAB conservation approach and offers guidance on how best to tackle common problems and maintain the character and value of your home. If you live in or look after a period property, or are a professional who needs to brief their clients on understanding their old building, this course is ideal for you. The SPAB is an IHBC-recognised CPD provider and certificates of attendance are available on request.
Cost: £95 per person ‘early bird’ special until 14 January 2024, then £115 per person.

Stirling City Heritage Trust – Level 3 Award in Energy Efficiency for Older and Traditional Buildings – Retrofit Course
Date and Time: Wednesday 28 & Thursday 29 February 2024; 9am-4:30pm
Location: 2-day course at Enterprise House, Springkerse Business Park, Stirling FK7 7UF
The course will be delivered by Professor John Edwards, an expert in sustainable buildings, having helped develop British Standard (BS7913) for older and traditional buildings and was involved in producing BSI PAS 2030, PAS 2035 and PAS 2038. The course cost is being subsidised through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund as part of the SCHT Retrofit Project and Historic Environment Scotland. Normally the cost is £690. The subsidised course fee is £300 & includes: Course fee, course e-book and an examination fee.
VACANCIES

The Heritage Trust Network – Volunteering opportunities
Youth Forum
The Heritage Trust Network is seeking young people aged 18-30 who are interested in the rescue, restoration and management of historic buildings, structures and places who want their voice heard in the heritage sector. Volunteers will be involved in: shaping the new Youth Forum; creating recommendations and advice to help members involve young people in heritage in a democratic way; co-designing, leading and taking part in online and in-person events; and creating online content including social media posts, blogs or vlogs
If you are interested in joining, please fill out a short application form here
Digital Heroes Project Volunteer
Are you digitally skilled, interested in helping heritage organisations and available to volunteer? The Heritage Trust Network are seeking people based in Scotland to join their Digital Heroes project which matches up digitally skilled young people with one of their member organisations to help them undertake a digital project. Examples include doing social media posts, digitising an archive or creating a digital marketing plan. If you are interested in volunteering as a digital hero, please fill out a short application form here

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BEFS NEWS

At the close of BEFS 20th Year we’d like to wish all our past team, Trustees as well as Members, Associates and colleagues across the sector a huge thank you for your support over the years, and for your continued engagement with BEFS.

It’s been a busy year across the sector and we’re proud to have been able to produce many significant consultation responses this year; the launch of the Sustainable Investment Tool; and the formation of a new sector strategy.

We hope everyone manages a little time to relax over the festive period and we look forward to working with you all in 2024.

At the close of the year, there is still continued activity across the sector.

On Tuesday 19 December the Scottish Government published their draft Budget for 2024-2025. This draft budget is for one year, and headline figures are discussed in BEFS Blog, here. SPICe have released their initial findings, which makes interesting reading, here.

HES have published the Reports on the Inventory of Historic Battlefields. BEFS was happy to support some of the facilitation around this work over the past few years, and is delighted to see the outputs released.

In the early months of 2024 BEFS expects to work with Members and the sector in relation to responses to the new Heat in Buildings Bill consultations.

In Westminster, the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill had its second reading in the House of Lords on 5 December, leading to concerns being raised about the impact of new consumer protection rules on charity access to Gift Aid. This blog sets out the key issues for membership organisations where Gift Aid is critical to their operating model. The Heritage Alliance are collecting evidence on the impacts of the Bill in order to highlight the unintended consequences and welcome any evidence from heritage organisations on the value of Gift Aid to their finances. Please contact Lydia to share any evidence of potential impact.

The Heritage Alliance have also written to the Home Secretary to express concerns about the impact of the new £38.7k salary threshold for Tier 2 Visas on the archaeological, conservation and academic sectors, as it also applies to spousal visas for the partners of UK citizens and involves scrapping the Shortage Occupation List. They are collecting evidence on the wider consequences of these changes.

BEFS first Bulletin of 2024 will be out on 18 January. Until then, BEFS Team and Board wish all of our readers a relaxing festive period, and a happy New Year.

 

CONSULTATIONS

Feedback on Historic England Advice and Guidance documents
Historic England
Historic England seeks feedback on the effectiveness of the advice contained in the new Historic England Advice Note (HEAN) covering Climate Change and Historic Building Adaptation.
Closes 24 December 2023

Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government is gathering views to help inform the scope of any legislation for a proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill.
The Bill aims to further improve decision making and the implementation of the National Performance Framework to ensure that all policy and delivery is focused on increasing the wellbeing of people living in Scotland, both now and in the future.
*NEW* Closes 14 February 2023

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities, and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Home Energy Model: replacement for the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP)
UK Government
The Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) is the methodology currently used by the government to estimate the energy performance of homes across the United Kingdom. The Home Energy Model will replace the SAP for the energy rating of dwellings. This is a consultation on the Model while it is still at a formative stage, so that industry can participate in the development process.
*NEW* Closes 6 March 2024

Social Housing Net Zero Standard in Scotland
Scottish Government
The social housing sector has led the way on energy efficiency in recent years and is well placed to build on this further while building in longer term ambition to transition to clean heating. This consultation seeks views on a new Social Housing Net Zero Standard (SHNZS) in Scotland. This new standard will replace the second Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing (EESSH2).
Closes 8 March 2024

Proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill
Scottish Government
There is no way to meet a legal obligation to reach ‘net zero’ without changing the heating systems in the vast majority of buildings. The purpose of this consultation is to make everyone aware of the proposal to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work, and to invite views on those proposals.
Closes 8 March 2024

 

CONSULTATION RESPONSES

Effective Community Engagement in the Local Development Planning Process (Scot Gov 14/12/2023)

Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 14/12/2023)

International culture strategy: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 18/12/2023)

 

NEWS RELEASES

Commission welcomes political agreement on new rules to boost energy performance of buildings across the EU (European Commission 07/12/2023)

Scotland’s Towns Partnership appoints new Chief Officer (STP 11/12/2023)

Four new Trustees appointed to SURF Board (SURF 12/12/2023)

UK towns and cities get £5 million funding boost to help bring disused historic buildings back to life (The Architectural Heritage Fund 12/12/2023)

New Public Affairs Appointment to Scottish Land & Estates’ Team (Scottish Land & Estates 18/12/2023)

Scotland’s climate changing faster than predicted (James Hutton Institute 19/12/2023)

 

PUBLICATIONS

Correspondence from joint UK Regulators to the CEOs of UK banks regarding charity banking access and customer service (OSCR 15/11/2023)

Townscapes: A Universal Basic Infrastructure for the UK (University of Cambridge 05/12/2023)

SURF Award Results (SURF 06/12/2023)

Reports on the Inventory of Historic Battlefields (HES 12/12/2023)

UK Heritage Pulse Spotlight on: Skills. Results from November 2023 Panel Research (National Lottery Heritage Fund 13/12/2023)

Who is most likely to live in homes that are harder to keep warm? (ONS 14/12/2023)

Resourcing the Planning Service (RTPI Scotland Research briefing) Key trends and findings 2023 (RTPI 15/12/2023)

Historic Environment Scotland Annual Report and Financial Statements 2022-23 (HES 19/12/2023)

New Gaelic Language Plan building on partnership and community work (HES 20/12/2023)

 

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

Workshop Summary: Resourcing the Planning System (Scot Gov 20/11/2023)

Correspondence between Cllr Cammy Day, City of Edinburgh Council and Cllr Bill Lobban, Highland Council and the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 28/11/2023)

National Transport Strategy: Third Annual Delivery Plan  (Transport Scotland 08/12/2023)

Planning permission appeals: housing development statistics (Scot Gov 13/12/2023)

Heat transition: public engagement strategic framework (Scot Gov 13/12/2023)

Correspondence regarding Historic Environment Scotland site closures: FOI release (Scot Gov 13/12/2023)

Correspondence between Neil Gray and the Economy and Fair Work Committee regarding the committee’s inquiry report on retail and town centres (Scot Gov 13/12/2023)

Response from the UK Government to the Built Environment Committee report on the impact of environmental regulations on development (UK Gov 13/12/2023)

Increasing housing availability using the tax system (Scot Gov 14/12/2023)

Correspondence between David Duncan, assistant chief constable at Police Scotland and the Convenor of the Net Zero, Energy and Transport committee regarding the Circular Economy Bill (Scot Parl 14/12/2023)

Correspondence between Historic Environment Scotland and the Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development regarding delivery on the priorities of Our Past, Our Future: The Strategy for Scotland’s Historic Environment (Scot Parl 15/12/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: Routes to further land reform – the origins of current Scottish Government proposals (SPICe 15/12/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: What do the Scottish Government’s proposals for land reform look like? (SPICe 15/12/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: Land Reform Consultation – What are the key stakeholders saying? (SPICe 15/12/2023)

Correspondence between the Minister for Green Skills, Circular Economy and Biodiversity and the Convenor of the Net Zero, Energy and Transport committee regarding the Circular Economy Bill (Scot Gov 15/Dec/2023)

Long-Term Plan for Towns: guidance for local authorities and Town Boards. Guidance covers the following towns in Scotland: Greenock, Irvine, Kilmarnock, Coatbridge, Clydebank, Dumfries and Elgin (UK Gov 18/12/2023)

Correspondence between the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee and the Minister for Housing  and Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights regarding an inquiry into Housing 2040 (Scot Parl 18/12/2023)

Scottish Budget: 2024 to 2025 (Scot Gov 19/12/2023)

Digital telecommunications: planning guidance (Scot Gov 20/12/2023)

 

OPINION & COMMENT

How harmful is damp and mould in UK homes and who is most at risk? (The Guardian 12/11/2023)

Podcast – Europa Nostra at 60: A look into the past, present and future (Europa Nostra 29/11/2023)

Scotland doesn’t have powerful local government – it’s time we did (Holyrood Magazine 04/12/2023)

Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill: Will new consumer protection rules restrict access to Gift Aid? (Charles Russell Speechlys 08/12/2023)

West Lothian Council ‘can’t afford’ school’s £35m Raac rebuild (BBC News 11/12/2023)

Caroline Gumble: 2023 reflections from the Chartered Institute of Building (Scottish Construction Now 12/12/2023)

Cop28: Historic climate deal calls for ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels (The Times 13/12/2023)

Glasgow trust which saves historic buildings given funding (The Herald 14/12/2023)

Has beauty become a dirty word? (Arts Professional 14/12/2023)

Craft skills charity returns £11.2m over sex trafficking claims (FE Week 18/12/2023)

Glasgow cheerleaders should admit it. The city is on its knees (Architects Journal 19/12/2023)

Number of long-term empty homes skyrockets despite ScotGov crackdown (The Herald 19/12/2023)

 

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Questions marked with a triangle (?) are initiated by the Scottish Government to facilitate the provision of information to the Parliament. Questions in which a member has indicated a declarable interest are marked with an “R”.

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 27/11/2023
S6W-23272
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to change the current funding mix to Creative Scotland to enable it to introduce a capital programme to support the refurbishment of cultural assets.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 6 December 2023

Mark Ruskell, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Green Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6W-23610
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill and Future Generations Commissioner.
Current status: Initiated by the Scottish Government. Answered by Shona Robison on 6 December 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 28/11/2023
S6W-23315
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what it is doing to support local authorities in locating and addressing reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete outside of schools and housing.
Current status: Answered by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 7 December 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23351
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the date by which it expects reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) to be removed from all NHS buildings, and whether it has a comparable target to that set in England to eradicate RAAC from the NHS estate by 2035.
Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 11 December 2023

Jackie Dunbar, Aberdeen Donside, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 11/12/2023
S6W-23787
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its proposed Land Reform Bill.
Current status: Initiated by the Scottish Government. Answered by Mairi Gougeon on 12 December 2023

Colin Smyth, South Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 27/11/2023
S6W-23221
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of public sector grants and contracts are currently delivered on a multi-year basis.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 12 December 2023
S6W-23222
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that multi-year funding arrangements for the voluntary sector have annual inflation-based uplifts inbuilt, at a level as close to inflation as possible.
S6W-23223
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that its funding decisions regarding support for the voluntary sector are issued no later than December, and that any funds are paid no later than the start of the tax year in April.
S6W-23224
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to develop a longer-term funding model for the voluntary sector across all of its directorates.
S6W-23225
To ask the Scottish Government whether it defines multi-year funding for voluntary sector organisations as a three-year minimum commitment.
Current status: Answered by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 12 December 2023

Tess White, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23472
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-21458 by Michael Matheson on 4 October 2023, how many NHS properties have been physically surveyed as part of the national programme to identify the use of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete.
Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 12 December 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 28/11/2023
S6W-23314
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will create a reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete register, covering the Scottish Government estate and public bodies, similar to the one reportedly being looked at by the UK Government.
S6W-23315
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what it is doing to support local authorities in locating and addressing reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete outside of schools and housing.
Current status: Answered by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 13 December 2023
S6W-23316
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how many of the 39 school buildings that have reportedly been identified as still needing a reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) assessment have (a) been confirmed as containing the substance and (b) received a RAG rating for any RAAC identified.
Current status: Holding Answer by Jenny Gilruth on 13 December 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 04/12/2023
S6W-23346
To ask the Scottish Government whether the topic of any Barnett consequential funding arising from the UK Government’s policy of 75% rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure premises for 2023-24 has been discussed at the weekly meetings between the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Finance and senior finance officials, and, if so, when it was (a) first and (b) last discussed.
Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 13 December 2023

Alexander Burnett, Aberdeenshire West, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23595
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to introducing statutory designation for the sites of important historic battles.
S6W-23596
To ask the Scottish Government what the appeal process is for Historic Environment Scotland land designations.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 13 December 2023

Brian Whittle, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23582
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of urban communities.
S6W-23583
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of skills development.
S6W-23584
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of rural communities.
Current status: Answered by Richard Lochhead on 13 December 2023

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23569 R
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the £50 million fund announced on 19 December 2020 to bring vacant and derelict land back into use has been used to invest in new affordable housing.
S6W-23570
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the £50 million fund announced on 19 December 2020 to bring vacant and derelict land back into use has been allocated to date.
S6W-23571
To ask the Scottish Government how many hectares of vacant and derelict land have been brought back into use as a result of the fund that it announced on 19 December 2020.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 13 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6W-23622
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12793 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on how many Freedom of Information requests have been made to Historic Environment Scotland in 2023, and what percentage of those requests were answered on or within 20 working days.
S6W-23623
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12784 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on how many members of Historic Scotland there are as of 30 November 2023.
S6W-23624
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12785 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on what the total cost was for an (a) adult, (b) concession and (c) young person Direct Debit membership for Historic Scotland in 2023.
S6W-23625
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12786 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it holds on how many sites that are managed by Historic Environment Scotland and its predecessor agencies have been (a) open, (b) temporarily closed and (c) permanently closed in 2022-23.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 13 December 2023

Sue Webber, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6O-02864
To ask the Scottish Government whether it is planning any new infrastructure investments in the next financial year in connection with City and Regional Growth Deals.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 13 December 2023

Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6O-02889
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its cladding remediation programme.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 14 December 2023

Maurice Golden, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/11/2023
S6W-23325
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide a list of all active funding streams within the (a) Energy and Climate Change and (b) Environment and Forestry directorate, broken down by the (i) purpose of, (ii) launch and end dates of, (iii) total value of and (iv) total amount awarded to date through each funding stream.
Current status: Holding Answer by Mairi McAllan on 14 December 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/11/2023
S6W-23409
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its recently announced proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill, how many (a) rental properties and (b) privately-owned homes it estimates would have to be retrofitted by 2033 to comply with its proposed measures.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 14 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23469
To ask the Scottish Government how many heat pump engineers it estimates there currently are in Scotland, and what support it will offer to the sector in order to train more engineers to (a) install and (b) maintain heat pumps.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 14 December 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23572
To ask the Scottish Government, further to its announcement on 7 November 2023, when it will provide an update on the anticipated publication date of the new Climate Change Plan; whether it will publish a timeline setting out the periods for public engagement and proposed parliamentary scrutiny of the new plan, and what time will be allocated, ahead of the statutory deadline, to permit an assessment and considered response to that engagement and scrutiny.
S6W-23573
To ask the Scottish Government on what date it plans to publish the final version of the publication, Reducing car use for a healthier, fairer and greener Scotland: A route map to achieve a 20 per cent reduction in car kilometres by 2030, which was committed to in the 2020 Climate Change Plan update and subject to consultation between January and April 2022.
Current status:  Answered by Mairi McAllan on 14 December 2023

Paul Sweeney, Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6W-23631
To ask the Scottish Government how much has been spent on developing the National Digital Platform for Scotland since 2018, broken down by financial year.
Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 14 December 2023

Pam Duncan-Glancy, Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23417
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its discussions with independent education providers regarding any presence of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete in the private education estate.
Current status: Answered by Jenny Gilruth on 19 December 2023

Maurice Golden, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23562
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to recommendation 22 in the report, Investor Panel, Mobilising international capital to help finance the transition to Net Zero, on whether public sector connections to heat grids should be mandatory.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 19 December 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23574
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to reform energy performance certificate (EPC) ratings, and whether it will consider linking its stated policy of introducing rent controls to EPC ratings.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 19 December 2023

Pam Gosal, West Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23580
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the establishment of new national parks.
S6W-23581
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has carried out any assessment of how effectively Scotland’s national parks are being governed.
Current status: Answered by Lorna Slater on 19 December 2023

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 11/12/2023
S6W-23762
To ask the Scottish Government how many more times the Housing to 2040 Strategic Board must meet in the year up to its first anniversary on 22 March 2024 to meet the commitment for the board to increase the number of times it meets from two to three times a year.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 19 December 2023

Ross Greer, West Scotland, Scottish Green Party
Date lodged: 18/12/2023
S6W-24021
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide details of its plans for the future of the Climate Emergency Skills Action Plan, in light of the upcoming reform of the post-school education and skills landscape.
Current status: Initiated by the Scottish Government. Answered by Lorna Slater on 19 December 2023

Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 14/12/2023
S6W-23858
To ask the Scottish Government how it is monitoring the progress regarding the introduction of 20-minute neighbourhoods across Scotland.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 20 December 2023

Brian Whittle, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 07/12/2023
S6W-23653
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22629 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, whether it is considering making any changes to its marketing strategy to further raise awareness of the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-23654
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22629 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what demographic data it is using to target its marketing campaign for the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-23655
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22629 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what demographic data it is using to target its marketing campaign for the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme towards households that are able to consider installing a heat pump, and from what source this data was gathered.
S6W-23656
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22629 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what criteria it uses to assess whether a household is “able to consider installing a heat pump”.
S6W-23657
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22629 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what specific (a) actions and (b) outreach its marketing campaign for the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme consists of.
S6W-23658
To ask the Scottish Government how much it has (a) budgeted for and (b) spent on the most recent marketing campaigns for the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-23659
To ask the Scottish Government how much it anticipates that it will spend on any revisions to the current marketing plans for the Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-23660
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on the number of energy efficiency businesses that are (a) located and (b) operating in Scotland, and how many of these are SMEs, broken down by local authority area.
S6W-23661
To ask the Scottish Government how many entities have been named as installers on Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant and Loan scheme applications, broken down by (a) local authority area, (b) type of low-carbon heat technology and (c) type of energy efficiency measure.
S6W-23662
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22658 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what economic modelling it has done to ensure that the recycling sector is prepared for the future potential demand of recycling of units and component parts of (a) gas boiler and (b) heat pumps and other clean heat systems.
S6W-23663
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22645 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, how it will determine whether the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme has been successful.
S6W-23664
To ask the Scottish Government what the cost of operating the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme was in terms of (a) overall staff, (b) IT and (c) administration cost to the Scottish Government in the 2022-23 grant year.
S6W-23666
To ask the Scottish Government what criteria applicants must meet in order to be considered for the rural uplift under the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-23667
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22651 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, for what reasons an approved application including rural uplift would not be paid.
S6W-23669
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22659 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what support is available for homeowners who are seeking to install renewable heating systems to meet net zero and heat in buildings targets, but for which current renewable solutions that are technically feasible would increase the running costs of the home.
S6W-23670
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22657 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what economic modelling has been completed to understand the potential impact of future demand for servicing of renewable heating solutions on market rates for (a) labour and (b) parts.
S6W-23674
To ask the Scottish Government what progress it has made on the actions outlined in the Heat in Buildings Supply Chains Delivery Plan to date.
S6W-23676
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to the potential impact that maintenance costs may have on the longevity of green heat systems in low-income households when developing its Heat in Buildings Bill consultation.
S6W-23677
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22664 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, whether applicants to the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme must meet a minimum (a) repair and (b) insulation standard, where technically feasible, prior to becoming eligible for funding for renewable heating systems.
S6W-23680
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22672 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what plans it has to “evolve and adapt” these schemes, in light of reports from the industry that current funding for energy efficiency retrofit projects needs to be more flexible and distributed from fewer sources.
S6W-23681
To ask the Scottish Government what specific action points have arisen from meetings between the Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights and the energy efficiency sector in the past year.
S6W-23683
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22666 by Patrick Harvie on 16 November 2023, what economic modelling has been completed to understand the ability of the current supply chain for heat pump maintenance to meet future demand.
S6W-23685
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22648 by Graeme Dey on 16 November 2023, in light of the targets presented in the Heat in Buildings Bill consultation, whether it will begin to collect data on how many students are pursuing energy efficiency qualifications.
S6W-23686
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-22647 by Graeme Dey on 16 November 2023, in light of the targets presented in the Heat in Buildings Bill consultation, whether it will begin to collect data on how many students who have completed energy efficiency qualifications have remained in Scotland and are currently employed within the energy efficiency sector.
Current status: Answers expected on 21 December 2023

Douglas Lumsden, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 08/12/2023
S6W-23706
To ask the Scottish Government how many heat engineer apprenticeships were available in the current financial year.
S6W-23707
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide details of all grants that are currently available for the installation of heat pumps in private homes.
Current status: Answers expected on 8 January 2024

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 13/12/2023
S6W-23837
To ask the Scottish Government what the underoccupancy rate has been for each of its offices in each month since January 2019, also broken down by location.
Current status: Answer expected on 11 January 2024

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 14/12/2023
S6W-23905
To ask the Scottish Government how many buildings currently remain in the Single Building Assessment pilot, and how many have been (a) completed and (b) removed from the pilot.
Current status: Answer expected on 12 January 2024

Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 15/12/2023
S6W-23949
To ask the Scottish Government which local authorities have published Local Heat and Energy Efficiency Strategies (LHEES), and whether it anticipates that any local authorities will not publish LHEES by the end of 2023.
S6W-23959
To ask the Scottish Government whether it can provide the estimated capital cost for local authorities to deliver any local authority-led heat network schemes that are currently in development, and how much financial support it is providing to local authorities to help deliver any such developments.
S6W-23960
To ask the Scottish Government what (a) number and (b) proportion of homes it anticipates will need to be supported by heat networks in order to meet targets for decarbonising home heating.
S6W-23961
To ask the Scottish Government how much (a) capital and (b) pre-capital support it has provided to heat network projects to date, and how many properties either have been or are set to be connected to heat networks as a result of any such support.
S6W-23962
To ask the Scottish Government what the estimated capital cost will be of meeting its existing heat network targets, and what proportion of this capital cost it has committed to providing (a) to date and (b) in its Budget for 2024-25.
S6W-23963
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the Heat Networks (Scotland) Act 2021 and its 2022 Heat networks delivery plan, whether it will provide an update on whether it has set a 2035 target for heat networks.
Current status: Answers expected on 15 January 2024

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 18/12/2023
S6W-24001
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the potential implications for its policies of the Climate Change Committee’s 2023 Progress Report to Parliament.
Current status: Answer expected on 16 January 2024

Rachael Hamilton, Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 19/12/2023
S6W-24017
To ask the Scottish Government when it anticipates that the proposed Land Reform Bill will be introduced to the Scottish Parliament.
Current status: Answer expected on 17 January 2024

Stephanie Callaghan, Uddingston and Bellshill, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 19/12/2023
S6W-24039
To ask the Scottish Government when it expects to publish its response to the phase 3 consultation on permitted development rights.
Current status: Answer expected on 17 January 2024

Brian Whittle, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 19/12/2023
S6W-24050
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to developing specific training within colleges and universities to develop skills in the delivery of heat networks.
S6W-24052
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to reviewing the effectiveness of current funding allocations for energy efficiency and low-carbon heating courses.
S6W-24053
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to providing compensation to heat pump installer companies to cover lost income while staff participate in training programmes.
S6W-24054
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to developing a regulatory framework with compulsory qualification requirements in low-carbon heating technologies for installers.
S6W-24055
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that low-carbon heating systems and energy efficiency measures offered by companies meet appropriate standards for quality.
S6W-24061
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its consultation on the proposed Heat in Buildings Bill, whether it will provide any examples of lenders offering time-limited interest-free loans to cover the capital costs of energy efficiency measures and the installation of clean heat systems.
S6W-24062
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on when the Scottish House Condition Survey 2022 will be published.
Current status: Answers expected on 17 January 2024

 

EVENTS

AHSS Lecture – The Scots in London
Date & Time: Thursday 18 January 2024; 7.30-9pm
Location: St Andrews West Church & Renfield Centre, 260 Bath Street, Glasgow G2 4JP. Also streamed online via Zoom.
Rory Lamb, PhD researcher at the University of Edinburgh, explores the forgotten London townhouses of Scotland’s absentee landlords. Drawn to the West End after the Union of 1707, they enjoyed the lifestyle of the prosperous metropolitan elite, packing their residences with luxury goods and acting as architectural patrons. Rory’s talk discusses the role of these buildings in the formation of British identity among 18th century Scots. Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £5 / students £2 /

RICS – World Built Environment Forum Week 2024
Date & Time: Monday 29 January – Thursday 1 February 2024
Location: Online
The World Built Environment Forum’s annual global gathering, WBEF Week, enables participants to engage in critical discussions about the direction of the built and natural environment with the people who are shaping it around the world. Over four days, participants will build a picture of how standards, policy, investment, data and technology are changing the landscape across energy, infrastructure, and the land and building life cycle. To conclude, WBEF Week 2024 will outline a practical approach to mobilising public and investor trust in new and emerging solutions.

 

TRAINING

Developing My Leadership Programme 2024
Date & Time: 6 online sessions between January and April 2024
Location: Online via Zoom
Applications are open again for the Developing My Leadership Programme, aimed at aspiring and established leaders in the Scottish heritage sector. Delivered by Social Enterprise Academy, the programme offers an invaluable opportunity to connect and share challenges, good practice, and experience with peers. It’s designed to support learners in developing key leadership skills to work productively with those around them and lead in an effective and authentic way. Applications must be received by 16 January 2024.
Find out more and register

C&BS – How to fundraise effectively from trusts and foundations
Date and Time: Tuesday 23 & 30 January 2024; 10am-1pm
Location: Online
In this course Pam Judson will provide expert insight and advice on pursuing funding from trusts and foundations. The two-session course will cover giving trends in Scotland, researching the criteria and guidelines, writing effective applications, developing and maintaining relationships with an exit strategy, and also provide many practical templates and tips.

C&BS – Introduction to being a Board Member (January course)
Date and Time: Tuesday 30 January & 6 February 2024; 4-7pm
Location: Online
Do you have new trustees who have joined your Board recently or have you taken on a trustee role yourself? This course covers everything you need to know to launch your Board career, from trustee duties, roles, meeting management, advocacy and fundraising to strategic planning, finances and much more!

SLCT – Introduction to Maintaining Traditional Buildings
Date & Time: Tuesday 30 January 2024; 10am-3pm
Location: Charlestown Workshops, KY11 3EN
The course will outline the maintenance that traditional buildings require, and attendees will gain an understanding of traditional building techniques and the correct materials to use when undertaking repairs. This is also an excellent opportunity to speak to the SLCT’s expert tutors about your project; attendees are welcome to bring along photos and mortar samples for some specific advice.

BACK

BEFS Director provides a brief overview of the Scottish Government draft Budget 2023-2024.

The Scottish Government published its draft Budget 2024-2025 on 19th December 2023 with details across all portfolios, including that of Historic Environment Scotland within Constitution, External Affairs and Culture.

Last year it was noted by the Scottish Government that we were living in, what were referred to by the Deputy First Minister as, “the most turbulent economic and financial context most people can remember”. The mood music has not changed tempo in the intervening year, and it is of note that SPICe’s initial overview is titled, In the bleak midwinter. Challenging times and difficult decisions (for Cabinet Secretaries and others) remain.

This overview highlights a few headline figures which may be of interest across the breadth of the existing built environment but we suggest that all those with a detailed interest explore the document in full before drawing any more definitive conclusions. Please also note that this is explicitly a one year budget – perhaps understandable in challenging times, but fails to support the many sectors suffering due to repeated one-year budgets.

Historic Environment Scotland (HES): the budget fails to draw any clear link between Net Zero and sector (present in the previous two iterations) which is surprising given the rest of the budget’s emphasis in this area.  An extract from the overview reads as follows:

“Our continued and increased investment in Scotland’s culture and heritage will improve the resilience and sustainability of our culture sector and, in tandem with our crossGovernment public service reform activity, will support our publicly funded culture bodies to deliver high-quality services, sustainably and equitably, that are fit for the future. We will continue to support the culture sector to deliver highly skilled jobs, successful businesses, and thriving communities. We will work with delivery partners to promote equity of access to our world-class collections and heritage assets and opportunities for cultural and creative participation.” (p.98)

The total operational cost forecast for HES in 2024-25 is £129.7 million, an increase of just over 13% on the previous year’s budget. The budget as stated, suggests an income generation of £63.5M. Based on the evidence below, and with continued uncertainty around cost-of-living impacts on visitor numbers, and rising costs – this may seem a touch optimistic.

The most recent HES Annual reports covering times impacted by covid are as follows: the Annual Report for 2021-2022 income is listed as £22.3M (almost £20M short of the expectations set within the Scottish Budget in 2022-23, as can be seen above), and still 67% down on 2019-2020. Published the same day as the 2024-2025 budget we have the Annual Report for 2022-2023 where commercial income is listed as £49.7M – almost matching the forecast above. We can only hope that the modelling for 2024-2025 proves as accurate.

Over previous years there was a significant increase in Government funding to HES (in 2022-2023 around 25% on 2021-2022 – from £55.9M to £70.1M), last year the increase was a more modest 3.8% overall, and this year sees a 2% increase. Positive in these difficult times, but significantly below inflation.

Level 4 data spreadsheets details HES Capital in the same way as previously (with an 11%  reduction from the prior year), “Investment towards restoring, enhancing and conserving our HES Properties in Care and associated visitor facing facilities across Scotland. Capital funding for corporate infrastructure.” With the uplift specifically to “support an increase in essential maintenance.”

The description of running costs is detailed as follows, “Staff and operating costs including conservation of estate to protect and promote Scotland’s historic environment. HES is the largest operator of paid visitor attractions in Scotland as well as the lead body for enabling and delivering Scotland’s Historic Environment Strategy, Our Place in Time and providing advice on the management of Scotland’s wider historic environment. Building, Archaeology and Voluntary Sector grants to third parties plus goods and services not included in administration and operating costs. ”

Ignoring the now erroneous reference to OPiT, this is a welcome direct reference to the grants provided to the sector via HES. The importance of these grants across the sector cannot be emphasised enough; with HES one of the few funders able to fund both organisations as well as building fabric. Sector stability, and the community impact of organisations and projects working with Scottish Government funding, through HES’ dispersal of these grants.

After last year’s cuts and the changes to Creative Scotland’s budget over the course of the year, it is positive to see that the Culture Budget is receiving a modest uplift overall.

The Planning Budget’s increase seems exceptionally positive in the face of the continued and sustained activity in this area. However with Planning reforms and new consultation suggested in early 2024, it remains to be seen if this budget fits the ever increasing pressures put on the profession. More about current resourcing can be read in RTPI Scotland’s research briefing, Resourcing the Planning Service Key trends and findings 2023 (released December 2023).

The significant decrease in Cities & Investment Strategy is not good news for place. Stasis is also seen in the budget for City Region and Growth Deals in Local Authority budgets. The Regeneration Budget also reduces slightly.

An area only recently examined within BEFS brief budget analysis statements has been the position of the Scottish Funding Council and the Skills & Training budgets. Both budget lines don’t necessarily paint a positive picture. Scottish Funding Council receives a 5.3% decrease with Skills Development Scotland facing a 2% cut. At a time of skills emergency across the sector, and with ever stretched collages and courses – as well as significant need to meet future net zero demands, this seems short-sighted at best.

Within the Local Government Funding outwith Core Settlement (p52) we can see that the Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS) remained static as does the Vacant & Derelict Land programme. When considering net-zero specifically, the Climate Action & Just Transition funding sees a significant decrease almost halving since last year.

Significant news within the built environment has been the slashing of the More Homes budget by 33% – initial thinking could see this as of note to our existing built environment, but as the stasis to other areas is seen above (and below); and with councils declaring housing emergencies this reduction in funding for homes may just put pressure on all aspects of our housing system.

A small chink of light within a budget devoid of much good news is the increase to Building Standards (95% increase) which will fund: “a programme of research and professional advice to ensure the Building Standards system in Scotland delivers its regulatory requirements and supports the creation and renewal of safe and sustainable buildings that stand the test of time.”

That is what so many across the sector work for, “the creation and renewal of safe and sustainable buildings that stand the test of time”. I feel perhaps, that one small budget line is not enough to achieve that necessary aim.

Please note that due to budgetary changes throughout the previous years, and changes in naming of funds and portfolios (all issues which fail to give clarity, and highlighted by SPICe) it may not be of greatest benefit to read each year-to-year budget as an accurate reflection of what occurred during the year.

2020-2021 Budget 2021-2022 Budget 2022-2023 Budget 2023-2024 Budget 2024-2025 Budget
£m £m £m £m £m
Architecture and Place 1.4 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5
Building Standards 2 16.7 11.8 31.3 2.4
Housing and Building Standards 533.2
Planning 8.3 11.5 13.7 12.3 65.6
Planning and Environmental Appeals 0.7 0.7 0.6 0.6 0.6
More Homes 896.1 748.1 744.3 567.5 375.8
Registers of Scotland 12.4 11.2 8.5 10.4 10
Fuel Poverty/Energy Efficiency 135.2 187.7 194.3 231.1
Energy Efficiency and Decarbonisation 358.2
Fuel Poverty & Housing Quality 1.7
Cities & Investment Strategy 205.6 209.8 233.2 263.2 211.1
Regeneration 47.4 111.6 96.4 59.2 58.5
Vacant and Derelict Land Grant 7.6 7.6 7.6 7.6 5
Creative Scotland and Other Arts 67.3 63.2 69.3 64.2 75.6
Cultural Collections 79.2 75.7 90 87.9 91.9
Major Events and Themed Years 6.6 8.2 18.2 24.2
Culture and Major Events Staffing 4.4 4.7 5.1 5 3.6
National Performing Companies 22.9 22.9 22.9 22.9 23.6
National Parks 13.9 17.5 18.5 20.9 21.8
Natural Resources, Peatland (and Flooding not 2023 or 2024) 29.7 44.1 56.4 60.7 31.4
Scottish Environmental Protection Agency 37.1 43.5 41.4 49 52.6
NatureScot 49.1 50.2 49.6 61.1 65.6
Zero Waste 16.5 40.2 43.4 47.4 48.9
Land Reform 15 14.9 12.3 13.9 11.6
Tourism 50.6 65.1 51.2 49.4 47
Climate Acton & Just Transition/  2024 Climate Action and Policy 28.7 29.8 49.1 79.5 29
Just Transition 12.2
Scottish Land Commission 1.5 1.5 1.6 1.5 1.6
City Region and Growth Deals 3.8 11.2 7.2 12.7 12.4
Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5
…………………………………………………………………………….Capital
Capital Land and Works 22 22 18.9 15
City Region and Growth Deals – in Local Government Funding 2024 201 198.1 226 191.3 190
Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS) 55 58 64 64 64
Regeneration Capital Grant Fund 25 25 25 25 25
Vacant and Derelict Land Investment Programme 5 5 10 10
Place Based Investment Programme (was Place, Town Centres and 20 Minute Neighbourhoods) 23 33 23 23
BACK

Get The Latest Built Environment News, Policy Developments, Publications & Consultations

BEFS NEWS

This week BEFS gathered together Members, Associates, and stakeholders to celebrate BEFS 20th year. It was a delight to see so many colleagues in the Dovecote Studios to raise a glass to many more years of BEFS supporting the sector. Thank you to all those who came and shared the celebration.
You can read our short publication on 20 years of BEFS here.

Last week BEFS and Historic Environment Scotland released the new Sustainable Investment Tool (SIT).  Investment in our existing buildings and heritage contributes to positive outcomes for people and places across a huge number of areas, including employment, the environment, good places for communities, healthy town centres, and homes. Sustainable investment is also important as current economic conditions and climatic impacts increase the challenges felt by all, including our existing built environment. The SIT enables visualisation around decision-making for projects and investment in built heritage and will help organisations as well as community and interest groups with heritage assets to explore sustainability, enabling greater resilience for Scotland’s places.

The SIT is released by Built Environment Forum Scotland (BEFS), with the support of Historic Environment Scotland, on behalf of the Our Place in Time – Built Heritage Investment Group (BHIG) and supports the new strategy for Scotland’s historic environment – Our Past, Our Future. Our thanks go to everyone that has contributed their time, expertise and vision to this project. More information about the origins of the SIT can be found on BEFS website.

Our Past, Our Future has been receiving the attention of the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture committee with a number of sector professionals giving evidence on the 23rd, HES giving evidence on the 30th, and Ms McKelvie in her ministerial role talking to the committee on the 7th. BEFS is delighted the sector is being better understood for its contributions to communities and places and appreciates the scrutiny given by the committee.

A new consultation has been launched: Delivering net zero for Scotland’s buildings – Heat in Buildings Bill. The consultation invites views on proposals to make new laws around the energy efficiency of our homes and buildings and the way we heat those buildings. Introduced in a Ministerial Statement on 28 November, the purpose of the consultation is to gather views on the proposals to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work. Following extensive work on the Heat in Buildings Strategy, BEFS looks forward to working with the sector during the consultation process. The consultation closes on 8 March 2024. You can read more in the ministerial statement, found here.

During the parliamentary session where the Heat in Buildings Bill was introduced, a number of pertinent questions were asked, and Graham Simpson MSP’s question concerning tenements can be found here.

In related news, BEFS are pleased to see the long-awaited release of the final report of the Tenements Short Life Working Group (published on 28 November), summarising all the work and recommendations made to the Scottish Government by the group members. In addition, a report summarising analysis of multi-owner buildings archetypes and costing of retrofit works and zero emissions heating was published alongside two consultation documents: proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill and a Social Housing Net Zero Standard.

A vast number of churches and places of worship are in transition, with some in the process of being assessed and sold on the open market. Recognising that churches will be divesting assets at speed and scale in the near future – and that those sites still publicly accessible will need to have sustainable purposes – SPAB and BEFS jointly hosted a CPD Conference, addressing the complexity of finding sustainable futures for these special places, across the planning arena, hearing from those involved with many aspects of decision making as well as funders, community support organisations and heritage specialists.

Further events on this important topic will be delivered by the Heritage Trust Network and Historic Churches Scotland. A Scotland Churches Sector Map has also been created by Heritage Trust Network, with support from Historic Churches Scotland, Scotland’s Churches Trust, National Churches Trust and Historic Environment Scotland. The map is aimed at groups who are looking for funding, resources or advice but who are unsure where to start and helps groups locate the support they need.

Historic England’s annual collation of datasets, Heritage Counts, details a range of indicators that provide useful insights into the state of the historic environment, enabling sector professionals to understand changes in the historic environment, develop policies to protect it, and demonstrate its importance. The latest published Heritage Indicator Data provides useful trends and statistics into the state of the historic environment around eight themes.

And finally, if you can’t get enough of BEFS Bulletin and are looking for another excellent regular publication to sign up to, Lintel is Historic Environment Scotland’s quarterly newsletter providing updates from regulatory work. You can check out the latest issue here; and sign up so you don’t miss the next issue.

 

CONSULTATIONS

Education Bill Provisions
Scottish Government
A consultation on a new national qualifications body and a new approach to inspection of education in Scotland, including elements of the proposed Education Bill.
Closes 18 December 2023

Proposed Desecration of War Memorials (Prevention) (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Parliament
This consultation relates to a draft proposal lodged as the first stage in the process of introducing a Member’s Bill in the Scottish Parliament, to ensure that war memorials in Scotland receive the protection that they deserve by creating the specific offence of desecration of a war memorial.
Closes 19 December 2023

Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park
Historic Environment Scotland
This survey on the Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park will gather public views to help deliver a new future for the Park that reflects community aspirations, the needs of the City and the inherent value and sensitivity of Holyrood Park.
Closes 19 December 2023

Corporate Plan 2024-27
Architecture & Design Scotland
A&DS are inviting feedback on their plans for the period 2024-27. In 2021 they launched a ten-year strategy, and having broken the delivery of this strategy into 3-year plans, they are now planning their future work and would like people to have a say in what they are proposing.
*NEW* Closes 19 December 2023

Feedback on Historic England Advice and Guidance documents
Historic England
Historic England seeks feedback on the effectiveness of the advice contained in the new Historic England Advice Note (HEAN) covering Climate Change and Historic Building Adaptation.
*NEW* Closes 24 December 2023

Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government is gathering views to help inform the scope of any legislation for a proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill.
The Bill aims to further improve decision making and the implementation of the National Performance Framework to ensure that all policy and delivery is focused on increasing the wellbeing of people living in Scotland, both now and in the future.
*NEW* Closes 14 February 2023

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Social Housing Net Zero Standard in Scotland
Scottish Government
The social housing sector has led the way on energy efficiency in recent years and is well placed to build on this further while building in longer term ambition to transition to clean heating. This consultation seeks views on a new Social Housing Net Zero Standard (SHNZS) in Scotland. This new standard will replace the second Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing (EESSH2).
*NEW* Closes 8 March 2024

Proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill
Scottish Government
There is no way to meet a legal obligation to reach ‘net zero’ without changing the heating systems in the vast majority of buildings. The purpose of this consultation is to make everyone aware of the proposal to make new laws around the heating systems that can be used in homes and places of work, and to invite views on those proposals.
*NEW* Closes 8 March 2024

 

CONSULTATION RESPONSES

Local Living and 20 Minute Neighbourhood – draft planning guidance: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 09/11/2023)

Local Living and 20 Minute Neighbourhood – draft planning guidance: published responses (Scot Gov 09/11/2023)

Management of Burial Grounds, Application for Burial, Exhumation and Restoration of Lairs: Regulation in Scotland (BEFS 17/11/2023)
BEFS welcomes the recognition within the minimum requirements that historic and ruined places of worship will require appropriate procedures, and is supportive of the proposals for management plans outlined in the consultation document. To enable best management and decision making we would consider that alongside the management plans, appropriate and accessible guidance will be key.

Statement in relation to the call for views: Agriculture and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill (BEFS 17/11/2023)
BEFS comments reiterate previous statements that ‘the environment’ should be considered to include the natural and historic environment. Power to provide support in relation to historic and cultural sites is an excellent start, however further integration within the Bill could elicit greater benefits more broadly.

Ambitions for the Planning System (BEFS 01/12/2023)
BEFS considers a key and impactful outcome of the planning system is a holistic understanding of what makes good places for people and communities. The response highlights the need for the appropriate skills and training within planning teams to enable appropriate consideration of the needs of communities and an understanding of the value and contribution of historic and existing buildings as assets towards outcomes set within NPF4 and Scotland’s National Outcomes.

 

NEWS RELEASES

Creative & Cultural Skills is closing its doors (CCSkills 14/11/2023)

Delivering Net Zero for England’s Historic Buildings: Local Data on the Demand for Retrofitting Skills and Economic Growth (Historic England 16/11/2023)

Support for communities working with church buildings (Heritage Trust Network 16/11/2023)

A pre-election Statement: Putting the Autumn Statement 2023 in context (Resolution Foundation 23/11/2023)

House set within a ruin is Scotland’s building of the year (RIAS 29/11/2023)

Alex Paterson, Chief Executive of Historic Environment Scotland (HES), has resigned after over seven years in the role (HES 29/11/2023)

Reappointments to the National Heritage Memorial Fund and The National Lottery Heritage Fund (UK Gov 05/12/2023)

 

PUBLICATIONS

Whole building assessment for energy efficiency and zero direct emissions heat in multi-owner and mixed-use buildings (Climate Exchange April 2023)

Auckland’s heritage counts 2023 (Knowledge Auckland 20/10/2023)

Heat pumps and domestic heat decarbonisation in the UK: A systems thinking analysis of barriers to adoption (CaCHE 14/11/2023)

Interactive Map and Dashboard – Local Data on the Demand for Retrofitting Skills and Economic Growth (Historic England 16/11/2023)

A Climate for Change: Adaptation and the National Trust (National Trust 20/11/2023)

SESARF: First three chapters from the South East Scotland Archaeological Research Framework go live (ScARF 22/11/2023)

Borrowed from the Future: An Ecological Blueprint (Scottish Ecological Design Association, 22/11/2023)

Report on social housing retrofit in Scotland (CIOB 23/11/2023)

Autumn Statement 2023 Analysis (The Heritage Alliance 24/11/2023)

Insulating Britain: Examining the barriers and motivations to decarbonising our homes (Social Market Foundation 24/11/2023)

UK natural capital accounts: 2023 (ONS 27/11/2023)

Heritage Counts: Indicator data (Historic England 29/11/2023)

An Evidence Based Approach to Supporting the Transition to Net Zero (Skills Development Scotland 30/11/2023)

Impact of increased cost of living on adults across Great Britain: July to October 2023 (ONS 04/12/2023)

Scottish Archives and Records Year in Review (Scottish Council on Archives 30/11/2023)

 

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

Building a greener future: Aggregates Tax Bill to encourage use of recycled materials in construction (Scot Gov 15/11/2023)

Scotland’s guiding principles on the environment: statutory guidance – error correction (Scot Gov 15/11/2023)

Budget Scrutiny 2024-15: Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee Letter to the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition (Scot Parl 16/11/2023)

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee Report on Heat Networks (Heat Network Supply Target) (Scotland) Regulations 2023 (Scot Parl 17/11/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: Renewable energy map of Scotland (SPICe 20/11/2023)

Short Term Lets Licensing Statistics, to 30 June 2023 (Scot Gov 20/11/2023)

Six projects awarded grants from round three of the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund to support major regeneration and transport projects (UK Gov 21/11/2023)

Agriculture and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill Timetable (Scot Parl 21/11/2023)

Correspondence between Patrick Harvie and the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee, confirming the Scottish Government’s intention to launch a formal public consultation on proposals for a Bill requiring changes to the heating and energy efficiency of most domestic and non-domestic properties across Scotland (Scot Parl 21/11/2023)

Adapting to Climate Change – Progress in Scotland (Climate Change Committee 21/11/2023)

Autumn Statement – Scottish Government priorities: Deputy First Minister statement (Scot Gov 21/11/2023)

Autumn Statement 2023 (UK Gov 22/11/2023)

Chief Planner letter: stakeholder update – autumn 2023 (Scot Gov 22/11/2023)

Transforming Great Britain’s Electricity Network: Department for Energy Security and Net Zero written statement (UK Gov 22/11/2023)

House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee The financial sector and the UK’s net zero transition First Report of Session 2023–24 (UK Gov 22/11/2023)

Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee Historic Environment Strategy (Scot Parl 23/11/2023)

SPICe Blog: UK Autumn Statement 2023 (SPICe 23/11/2023)

Planning appeals and other cases: guidance on taking part (Scot Gov 23/11/2023)

Single Building Assessment programme: spending information (Scot Gov 23/11/2023)

Private Sector Rent Statistics, Scotland, 2010 to 2023 (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Tenements Short Life Working Group – energy efficiency and zero emissions heating: final report (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Heat in buildings – multiple ownership mixed use buildings: energy retrofit possibilities (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Delivering net zero for Scotland’s buildings – Heat in Buildings Bill: consultation (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Heat in buildings monitoring and evaluation Framework (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Social housing net zero standard: consultation (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Net zero heating and energy efficiency standards: research summary (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Net zero heating and energy efficiency standards – phase 1 and 2: qualitative research (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

Net zero heating and energy efficiency standards – phase 3 and 4: qualitative research (Scot Gov 28/11/2023)

UK Employer Skills Survey 2022 – Scotland Report (Scot Gov 29/11/2023)

Scottish Government Draft Planning Guidance: Biodiversity (Scot Gov 30/11/2023)

Finance and Public Administration Committee (FPAC) Report on the Financial Memorandum for the Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 30/11/2023)

Place Directors: factsheet (Scot Gov 04/12/2023)

Planning performance statistics: Uses of the information (Scot Gov 04/12/2023)

SPICe Spotlight: How is Scotland Performing? (SPICe 04/12/2023)

Scottish islands: data overview 2023 (Scot Gov 05/12/2023)

Green Heat Finance Taskforce minutes: 1 November 2023 (Scot Gov 05/12/2023)

 

OPINION & COMMENT

CIOB calls for reuse and refurbishment over demolition in Ireland and NI (CIOB 24/10/2023)

Three Scots areas found to be in urgent need of home insulation (The Herald 15/11/2023)

Edinburgh named as one of worst cities in Scotland for vacant homes with almost 7,000 lying empty (STV News 17/11/2023)

Six Scottish regeneration and transport projects receive £122m levelling up funding (Project Scotland 21/11/2023)

Taxing questions: Chief Executive Hamish Trench looks at what the Commission’s research and advice says about land and property tax reform (Scottish Land Commission 21/11/2023)

Sector skills should be funded by employers, not Arts Council England (Arts Professional 22/11/2023)

Culture is not trivial, it’s about who we are. That’s why Labour needs a plan to save the arts (The Observer 26/11/2023)

Public sector workforce will have to shrink – Shona Robison (BBC News 27/11/2023)

When sea levels rise, so does your rent (BBC News 28/11/2023)

UK told to ‘supercharge heat pumps’ as Patrick Harvie launches vision (The Herald 28/11/2023)

Jocelyne Fleming: Why we need to take a step back in order to support Scotland’s social housing (Scottish Construction Now 30/11/2023)

Community group bid for ‘Outlander church’ fails (BBC News 01/12/2023)

Glasgow council declares ‘housing emergency’ (BBC News 01/12/2023)

Short-term let policy ruled unlawful for second time (BBC News 01/12/2023)

Scottish councils warn of ‘bankruptcy’ risk without more funding (BBC News 01/12/2023)

Humza Yousaf calls emergency cabinet amid concern over Scottish budget (The Herald 05/12/2023)

 

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Questions marked with a triangle (?) are initiated by the Scottish Government to facilitate the provision of information to the Parliament. Questions in which a member has indicated a declarable interest are marked with an “R”.

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22602
To ask the Scottish Government what discussions have taken place regarding the development of an infrastructure levy.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 14 November 2023
S6W-22603
To ask the Scottish Government what discussions it has had with the UK Government regarding the transfer of powers required to implement its proposed Building Safety Levy.
S6W-22604
To ask the Scottish Government when it plans to publish its proposals for a Building Safety Levy.
S6W-22606
To ask the Scottish Government what formula it plans to use to calculate its proposed Building Safety Levy.
S6W-22607
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to whether the introduction of a Building Safety Levy would be an obstacle to investment in the construction sector.
S6W-22608
To ask the Scottish Government what modelling it has undertaken of any wider economic impact of the introduction of a Building Safety Levy.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 14 November 2023
S6W-22605
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to estimate the costs required for cladding remediation of so-called “orphan” buildings.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 14 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 01/11/2023
S6W-22592
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment has been made of (a) the use and (b) any potential fire risks of spray insulation in buildings.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 14 November 2023
S6W-22600
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to introduce a register of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete held and inspected by all public sector bodies.
Current status: Answered by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 14 November 2023

Sarah Boyack, Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 01/11/2023
S6W-22639
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how many (a) public sector buildings, (b) privately-owned homes and (c) housing association homes have double glazing that was installed before 2002.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 14 November 2023

Brian Whittle, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 02/11/2023
S6W-22673
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the current construction skills landscape, and what plans it has to target and develop particular sectors within the construction industry based on any such assessment.
Current status: Answered by Richard Lochhead on 17 November 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
S6W-22387
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-15639 from Elena Whitham on 6 March 2023, whether it will provide an update on (a) what action it will take and (b) the timescales for any such action, in response to the finding by the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee that Scotland was not in full compliance with access to justice requirements of the Aarhus Convention.
Current status: Answered by Siobhian Brown on 20 November 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/11/2023
S6W-22683
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has any plans to increase the funding available to preserve the heritage of Scotland’s churches and chapels, in light of the reported announcement by the Church of Scotland that it is to close and sell up to 40% of its churches.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 20 November 2023
S6W-22684
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has any plans to introduce an equivalent scheme to the Community Facilities Programme in Wales, which provides small and large grants to community and voluntary sector organisations to improve community facilities that are well used by local people, such as churches, post offices and community shops.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 20 November 2023

Willie Rennie, North East Fife, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 07/11/2023
S6W-22628
To ask the Scottish Government how many households (a)(i) were eligible for and (ii) received support in each year of phase one and (b)(1) are eligible for and (2) will receive support in each year of phase two, of the Warmer Homes Scotland scheme.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 21 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
S6W-22790
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of any potential double charging for boats that do not include accommodation under the provisions in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 21 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22796
To ask the Scottish Government, further to previous commitments by its ministers, how much funding in total it has allocated to each City Region Deal to date, also broken down by project.
Current status: Answered by Neil Gray on 22 November 2023

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22778
To ask the Scottish Government what review it has undertaken of the impact of Regulation 6 of the Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications) (Scotland) Regulations 2022, which provides planning authorities with the power to levy a surcharge of up to 25% on retrospective applications as a means of recovering the costs of undertaking enforcement investigations.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 23 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22791
To ask the Scottish Government what information it has on how many people have been charged up to double the normal council tax rate for homes that have been empty for 12 months or more, or 24 months where the property is being actively marketed for sale, in each year since 1999, also broken down by local authority.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 24 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22842
To ask the Scottish Government what funding it is providing for colleges to deliver courses on the traditional trades.
S6W-22843
To ask the Scottish Government what funding it is providing for college courses in the traditional crafts, particularly stonemasonry, at colleges in Edinburgh.
Current status: Answered by Graeme Dey on 24 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 15/11/2023
S6W-22937
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for people working in agriculture and aquaculture.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 28 November 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 17/11/2023
S6W-23034
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-20632 by Shona Robison on 11 September 2023, whether the (a) stage 1 desktop and (b) stage 2 visual inspection of the Scottish Government Estate has been competed, and, if so, what the outcome of each of these inspections was.
Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 29 November 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 15/11/2023
S6W-22941
To ask the Scottish Government how many council houses that are currently unoccupied have been assessed to establish the cost of bringing them back into use.
S6W-22942
To ask the Scottish Government what estimate it has made of the cost of bringing back into use council houses that are currently unoccupied.
S6W-22943
To ask the Scottish Government how many temporary accommodation facilities have been in breach of the standards and outcomes that social landlords should aim to achieve when performing housing activities, as set out in the Temporary Accommodation Standards Framework, which was published in April 2023.
S6W-22948
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how much each local authority has spent on people living in temporary accommodation, in each year since 1999.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 29 November 2023

Sarah Boyack, Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 22/11/2023
S6O-02817
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what plans it has to review property factor legislation.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 30 November 2023

Daniel Johnson, Edinburgh Southern, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 20/11/2023
S6W-23075
To ask the Scottish Government for what reason it reportedly refused proposals by (a) the Scottish Building Apprenticeship and Training Council, (b) the Scottish Painting and Decorating Apprenticeship Council and (c) Unite the Union to use Professional Development Awards to alleviate the backlog in construction apprentices who have completed most of their SVA units and portfolio work but remain uncertified.
Current status: Answered by Graeme Dey on 4 December 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 20/11/2023
S6W-23067
To ask the Scottish Government what discussions it has had regarding the suspension of home sharing and house swapping from the short-term lets licensing scheme.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 5 December 2023

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 24/11/2023
S6W-23199 R
To ask the Scottish Government when it received the advice relating to the European Convention on Human Rights implications of Compulsory Rental Orders and Compulsory Sales Orders; whether it has been refreshed, and whether ministers have begun the “substantial consideration” that officials have suggested.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 5 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 27/11/2023
S6W-23268
To ask the Scottish Government what action it plans to take regarding the number of buildings described by Historic Environment Scotland as “of national importance” that the Church of Scotland plans to release from its estate over the next decade.
S6W-23269
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to the National Trust for Scotland estimate that only 30% of the actions in the 2019 Skills Investment Plan for Scotland’s historic environment sector have been delivered, mainly due to a lack of resource.
S6W-23270
To ask the Scottish Government whether the refresh of the Skills Investment Plan for Scotland’s historic environment sector is still on track to be published in February 2024.
S6W-23271
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reported warnings from the National Trust for Scotland that the provision of stonemasonry apprenticeships is currently in crisis and requires action immediately.
S6W-23272
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to change the current funding mix to Creative Scotland to enable it to introduce a capital programme to support the refurbishment of cultural assets.
S6W-23273
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to increase the provision of micro-grants to support and promote volunteering via Creative Scotland.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 5 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 20/11/2023
S6W-23109
To ask the Scottish Government how much of the £100 million of funding announced by the First Minister at the Scottish National Party conference in October 2023 will be allocated to Creative Scotland in each year until 2028.
Current status: Answered by Angus Robertson on 6 December 2023

Mark Ruskell, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Green Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23610
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill and Future Generations Commissioner.
Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 6 December 2023

Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 23/11/2023
S6W-23255
To ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to increase domestic energy efficiency.
Current status: Answer expected on 8 December 2023

Colin Smyth, South Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 27/11/2023
S6W-23221
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of public sector grants and contracts are currently delivered on a multi-year basis.
S6W-23222
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that multi-year funding arrangements for the voluntary sector have annual inflation-based uplifts inbuilt, at a level as close to inflation as possible.
S6W-23223
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that its funding decisions regarding support for the voluntary sector are issued no later than December, and that any funds are paid no later than the start of the tax year in April.
S6W-23224
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to develop a longer-term funding model for the voluntary sector across all of its directorates.
S6W-23225
To ask the Scottish Government whether it defines multi-year funding for voluntary sector organisations as a three-year minimum commitment.
Current status: Answers expected on 12 December 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 28/11/2023
S6W-23314
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will create a reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete register, covering the Scottish Government estate and public bodies, similar to the one reportedly being looked at by the UK Government.
S6W-23315
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what it is doing to support local authorities in locating and addressing reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete outside of schools and housing.
S6W-23316
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how many of the 39 school buildings that have reportedly been identified as still needing a reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) assessment have (a) been confirmed as containing the substance and (b) received a RAG rating for any RAAC identified.
Current status: Answers expected on 13 December 2023

Sue Webber, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6O-02864
To ask the Scottish Government whether it is planning any new infrastructure investments in the next financial year in connection with City and Regional Growth Deals.
Current status: To be taken in the Chamber on 13 December 2023

Maurice Golden, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/11/2023
S6W-23325
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide a list of all active funding streams within the (a) Energy and Climate Change and (b) Environment and Forestry directorate, broken down by the (i) purpose of, (ii) launch and end dates of, (iii) total value of and (iv) total amount awarded to date through each funding stream.
Current status: Answer expected on 14 December 2023

Miles Briggs, Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/11/2023
S6W-23409
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its recently announced proposals for a Heat in Buildings Bill, how many (a) rental properties and (b) privately-owned homes it estimates would have to be retrofitted by 2033 to comply with its proposed measures.
Current status: Answer expected on 14 December 2023

Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
S6O-02889
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its cladding remediation programme.
Current status: To be taken in the Chamber on 14 December 2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23351
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the date by which it expects reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) to be removed from all NHS buildings, and whether it has a comparable target to that set in England to eradicate RAAC from the NHS estate by 2035.
Current status: Answer expected on 15 December 2023

Pam Duncan-Glancy, Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23417
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its discussions with independent education providers regarding any presence of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete in the private education estate.
Current status: Answer expected on 15 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23469
To ask the Scottish Government how many heat pump engineers it estimates there currently are in Scotland, and what support it will offer to the sector in order to train more engineers to (a) install and (b) maintain heat pumps.
Current status: Answer expected on 15 December 2023

Tess White, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 30/11/2023
S6W-23472
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-21458 by Michael Matheson on 4 October 2023, how many NHS properties have been physically surveyed as part of the national programme to identify the use of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete.
Current status: Answer expected on 15 December 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 04/12/2023
S6W-23346
To ask the Scottish Government whether the topic of any Barnett consequential funding arising from the UK Government’s policy of 75% rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure premises for 2023-24 has been discussed at the weekly meetings between the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Finance and senior finance officials, and, if so, when it was (a) first and (b) last discussed.
Current status: Answer expected on 18 December 2023

Alexander Burnett, Aberdeenshire West, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23595
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to introducing statutory designation for the sites of important historic battles.
S6W-23596
To ask the Scottish Government what the appeal process is for Historic Environment Scotland land designations.
Current status: Answers expected on 19 December 2023

Brian Whittle, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23582
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of urban communities.
S6W-23583
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of skills development.
S6W-23584
To ask the Scottish Government how it defines the term “just transition” in the context of rural communities.
Current status: Answers expected on 19 December 2023

Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23569 R
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the £50 million fund announced on 19 December 2020 to bring vacant and derelict land back into use has been used to invest in new affordable housing.
S6W-23570
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the £50 million fund announced on 19 December 2020 to bring vacant and derelict land back into use has been allocated to date.
S6W-23571
To ask the Scottish Government how many hectares of vacant and derelict land have been brought back into use as a result of the fund that it announced on 19 December 2020.
Current status: Answers expected on 19 December 2023

Maurice Golden, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23562
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to recommendation 22 in the report, Investor Panel, Mobilising international capital to help finance the transition to Net Zero, on whether public sector connections to heat grids should be mandatory.
Current status: Answer expected on 19 December 2023

Monica Lennon, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23572
To ask the Scottish Government, further to its announcement on 7 November 2023, when it will provide an update on the anticipated publication date of the new Climate Change Plan; whether it will publish a timeline setting out the periods for public engagement and proposed parliamentary scrutiny of the new plan, and what time will be allocated, ahead of the statutory deadline, to permit an assessment and considered response to that engagement and scrutiny.
S6W-23573
To ask the Scottish Government on what date it plans to publish the final version of the publication, Reducing car use for a healthier, fairer and greener Scotland: A route map to achieve a 20 per cent reduction in car kilometres by 2030, which was committed to in the 2020 Climate Change Plan update and subject to consultation between January and April 2022.
S6W-23574
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to reform energy performance certificate (EPC) ratings, and whether it will consider linking its stated policy of introducing rent controls to EPC ratings.
Current status: Answers expected on 19 December 2023

Pam Gosal, West Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/12/2023
S6W-23580
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the establishment of new national parks.
S6W-23581
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has carried out any assessment of how effectively Scotland’s national parks are being governed.
Current status: Answers expected on 19 December 2023

Donald Cameron, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/122023
S6W-23622
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12793 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on how many Freedom of Information requests have been made to Historic Environment Scotland in 2023, and what percentage of those requests were answered on or within 20 working days.
S6W-23623
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12784 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on how many members of Historic Scotland there are as of 30 November 2023.
S6W-23624
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12785 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it has on what the total cost was for an (a) adult, (b) concession and (c) young person Direct Debit membership for Historic Scotland in 2023.
S6W-23625
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12786 by Neil Gray on 12 December 2022, what information it holds on how many sites that are managed by Historic Environment Scotland and its predecessor agencies have been (a) open, (b) temporarily closed and (c) permanently closed in 2022-23.
Current status: Answers expected on 20 December 2023

 

MOTIONS

Culture in Communities: The Challenges and Opportunities in Delivering a Place-based Approach
S6M-11153
Submitted by: Clare Adamson, Motherwell and Wishaw, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
That the Parliament notes the conclusions and recommendations contained in the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee’s 4th Report, 2023 (Session 6), Culture in Communities: The challenges and opportunities in delivering a place-based approach (SP Paper 431).

Recognising Edinburgh’s Housing Emergency
S6M-11244 R
Submitted by: Sarah Boyack, Lothian, Scottish Labour.
Date lodged: 20/11/2023
That the Parliament notes the cross-party decision of City of Edinburgh Council to declare a housing emergency on 2 November 2023; is concerned at what it considers is the extreme nature of the emergency that Edinburgh is facing, with, it understands, approximately 5,000 households in temporary accommodation, a severe shortage of social homes and unsustainable rises in private sector rents in the city, in spite, it believes, of the Cost of Living (Tenant Protection) (Scotland) Act 2022; understands that the council has committed to taking a human rights-based approach to developing a Housing Emergency Action Plan, alongside organisations such as Shelter Scotland and SHAPE, to build on and consolidate existing actions; considers that Edinburgh is in the grip of a housing emergency, and notes the view that urgent support and resources are needed for Edinburgh to address the emergency and overcome the severe challenges that it considers that the city faces.

Scotland’s Housing Emergency
S6M-11351 R
Submitted by: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 20/11/2023
That the Parliament agrees that Scotland is experiencing a housing emergency.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 22 November 2023

Approval of SSI
S6M-11375
Submitted by: George Adam, Paisley, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 21/11/2023
That the Parliament agrees that the Heat Networks (Supply Targets) (Scotland) Regulations 2023 [draft] be approved.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on Wednesday, 22 November 2023

Aberdeenshire Architectural and Landscape Design Awards
S6M-11473
Submitted by: Alexander Burnett, Aberdeenshire West, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.
Date lodged: 29/11/2023
That the Parliament congratulates the winners of the 2023 Aberdeenshire Architectural and Landscape Design Awards (AALDA); acknowledges that the awards highlight sustainable design principles, and the creative use of materials and existing buildings in residential and commercial developments; applauds GD Lodge Architects for winning the Ian Shepherd Award, and overall winner of the scheme, for the Vinery; notes that the judges chose the Vinery, by GD Lodge Architects, as an excellent example of reusing unusual buildings in development, rather than building a brand-new structure; congratulates all category winners, including Quarry Studios by Moxon Architects, in the Business and Community Enterprise category and in the Landscape and Biodiversity Enhancement category, The Old School, Ballater, by Ian Rodgers, in the Building Communities for the Future category, the Steading by Allison Joy Architects, in the Innovative Single House Design category, the Vinery by GD Lodge, in the Conservation and Building Adaption category, and wishes them well in their future architectural and landscape design efforts.

Aberdeen City Council Awarded Royal Town Planning Institute Award for Excellence in Plan Making Practice
S6M-11554
Submitted by: Audrey Nicoll, Aberdeen South and North Kincardine, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 06/12/2023
That the Parliament congratulates Aberdeen City Council on receiving the Royal Town Planning Institute award for Excellence in Plan Making Practice, in recognition of its Net Zero Aberdeen Route Map; understands that the route map, and six enabling strategies, will support a net zero city transition spanning the built and natural environment, and deliver positive outcomes for people, communities and the environment; further understands that the project was considered a best practice example, drawing together a wide range of stakeholders to chart a course for achieving an ambitious net zero target for the area; congratulates everyone involved in the project, and wishes them every success for the future.

 

EVENTS

For further listings, please see our events calendar

AHSS Lecture – Happy Homes: Cooperation, Community and the Edinburgh Colonies
Date & Time: Monday 11 December 2023; 6.30-8pm
Location: Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL (wheelchair accessible). Also streamed online via Zoom.
Edinburgh and Leith colony housing represents a very distinctive, immediately recognisable built form. Or so you might think. In fact there is considerable divergence in design, in prices (rents) and in the occupants. In this talk, Richard Rodger dissects the background to colony housing, their owners, occupants, and other characteristics, to reveal a new perspective on this housing type.
Tickets available from Eventbrite or on the door: £6 / students £2

Society of Antiquaries of Scotland – On their terms: Black women subverting the plantation economy in the Caribbean
Date & Time: Thursday 14 December 2023; 6-7pm
Location: In person and streamed online via Zoom
“How did Black women negotiate their place in the plantation economies of the Caribbean 200 years ago? This free lecture with Dr Peggy Brunache, draws on a Black feminist lens to reveal alternative narratives of Atlantic enslaved and free communities. A free drinks reception will follow the talk and all are welcome.”

 

TRAINING

Built Environment Technical Seminars and Masterclasses – Mortar Analysis Explained
Date & Time: Tuesday 12 December 2023; 1-3.30pm
Location: Online
Gain a greater understanding of the process of mortar analysis! This seminar will allow attendees to gain a greater understanding of the process of mortar analysis and to be able to understand and use the results of mortar analysis to create better specifications for replacement mortars.

Built Environment Technical Seminars and Masterclasses – Stone Analysis Explained
Date & Time: Tuesday 19 December 2023; 1-3.30pm
Location: Online
Gain a greater understanding of the process of stone analysis! Many conservation projects require the replacement of structurally compromised stone and will require stone analysis and matching in order to find currently available sources of compatible replacement stone. Stone analysis may also be required to gain listed building consent or to meet funder’s requirements.

Developing My Leadership Programme 2024
Date & Time: 6 online sessions between January and April 2024
Location: Online via Zoom
Applications are open again for the Developing My Leadership Programme, aimed at aspiring and established leaders in the Scottish heritage sector. Delivered by Social Enterprise Academy, the programme offers an invaluable opportunity to connect and share challenges, good practice, and experience with peers. It’s designed to support learners in developing key leadership skills to work productively with those around them and lead in an effective and authentic way. Applications must be received by 16 January 2024.

 

VACANCIES

The Society of Antiquaries of Scotland – Community Engagement and Development Specialist
Estimated Fee: £20-25,000 (inclusive of meeting and travel expenses, and VAT if applicable)
Status: Fixed term; Six months (Jan-Jun 2024)
Location: Home or company based; able to travel around Scotland
The Society of Antiquaries of Scotland are inviting expressions of interest from a suitably qualified Consultant to lead the Society’s “Scotland’s Heritage Hub” project. The role will involve undertaking consultation (meetings and focus groups) with existing and potential partners to identify needs and opportunities, to develop a database of contacts of organisations, community groups and individuals, to map potential partnerships, and to develop an initial set of potential activities/programmes and evaluation framework. This community engagement and audience development research will report on what people’s views and ideas are for the Society’s ambitious “Scotland’s Heritage Hub” project.
Job Specification and applications
Closing date: 10am on Monday 11 December 2023.

LOCO Home Retrofit CIC – Retrofit Assessor/ Team Member
Salary: £25 – 28,000
Status: Permanent
Location: Central Glasgow/Hybrid
Loco Home is a non-profit intermediary for accelerating home retrofit in Glasgow, bringing together homeowners, installers and advisers to provide services that make better retrofit (insulation and zero emissions heating) more accessible to more people. The Retrofit Assessor role involves surveying homes to collect information to inform whole home retrofit plans in the role of PAS2035 Retrofit Assessor; participating in innovation projects and delivering a community engagement programme with homeowners, communities and tradespeople about the benefits of low carbon, healthy, efficient homes. Pease see the detailed Job Description for more information and how to apply.
Closing date: Friday 15 December 2023

BACK

The Heritage Trust Network is recruiting for the post of Heritage Trainee (Scotland).

This exciting opportunity continues the Network’s focus on welcoming new people to the sector, already evident through the Network’s Youth Forum and involvement with the Make Your Mark campaign. The post has been designed to help the successful applicant develop on-the-job skills, knowledge, and networks to help them gain early-career access to the heritage sector. The role is funded by Historic Environment Scotland and National Trust for Scotland.

More information and application details here.

Salary:  Pro rata of £23,400 p.a. (Real Living Wage)

Status: Full-time (37.5 hours p/w); 12 months fixed term

Location: Working from home or from an agreed shared workspace anywhere in Scotland.

Closing date: 10pm on Monday 6 May 2024

 

BACK

Get The Latest Built Environment News, Policy Developments, Publications & Consultations

BEFS News

The issues around places of worship are gaining significant interest as closures/sales/repurposing become part of many communities’ experiences. There are several recent articles covering this subject, such as Church closures Scotland: ‘Existential crisis’ as up to 700 churches predicted to close across Scotland by end of the decade. It seems extremely timely that the BEFS/SPAB CPD Conference, Scotland’s Churches in Transition: Planning for the future, bringing together interests from both planning and conservation, looking at what good decisions for the future can look like, is at the end of this month.

Next week BEFS Director will be giving evidence (with a number of sector stakeholders) to the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture – Parliamentary Committee in relation to the new strategy for Scotland’s historic environment, Our Past, Our Future. You can read the recent Committee report on pre-budget scrutiny for Culture – with clear recommendations, here.

When it comes to finances and decision-making for our places, the sector and OPIT (and we do mean OPIT) Built Heritage Investment Group worked collaboratively on the Sustainable Investment Tool. The Tool will soon launch, supporting the sector, communities, and the new strategy, Our Past, Our Future – do keep your eyes peeled. You can remind yourself of the earlier work and development, here.

As supporting members of the Climate Heritage Network (CHN), BEFS have been proud to sign the CHN Call to Action ahead of COP28 in Dubai. This calls for cultural voices uniting to ensure that climate negotiators put cultural heritage, arts, and creative industries at the heart of climate action. You can sign-up as an individual or as an organisation here.

Historic Environment Scotland have published Managing Change in the Historic Environment: Fire and Historic Buildings – their non-statuary guidance note sets out the principles of fire safety in historic buildings. And, for voluntary organisations Make Your Mark launched their Inclusive Volunteering Toolkit & Report.

The State of the Profession 2023 report from Royal Town Planning Institute has analysed information on the 22,000 planners in the UK that make up profession, and how they play an essential role in tackling the modern challenges of the 21st century, from climate change adaptation to the housing crisis.

When considering the state of the nation, it’s not just the professions that matter – but the residents across the nation. In the last Bulletin we brought you the CIOB survey which noted that many can’t afford, or are not informed, about energy upgrades. As you’ll see by examining the Parliamentary Questions section below, there’s a great deal of MSP interest in this information!

And, if you want to help support further research and opinion, The Participation and Communities Team (PACT) of the Scottish Parliament are inviting tenants and landlords in the private rented sector to participate in respective lived experience housing panels. The outcomes of the panels will be used as recommendations to Members of the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee who will scrutinise Scottish Government proposals to change housing laws. The Committee are seeking a diverse participant pool to represent a wide range of people in the UK. Tenants who are interested in participating should follow this link and landlords who are interested in participating should follow this link.

Across the UK we note that there have been big changes in the UK Government with a significant Cabinet reshuffle (please note, the Parliament website is still being updated), welcoming in the 16th Housing Minister since 2010; as well as the first King’s Speech. As matters specifically pertaining to BEFS work, be that planning, housing, culture, or net-zero goals are devolved (or set by the Scottish Government), we hope our readers are happy to explore these matters across a range of media in their own time.

And finally, BEFS thanks Bobby Jewell for all his work at BEFS over the last few months, and wishes him continuing success in his freelance career – we’ve been delighted to work with you.

CONSULTATIONS

Management of burial grounds, application for burial, exhumation, private burial and restoration of lairs: regulation in Scotland
Scottish Government
The consultation paper sets out a range of proposals and approaches with the aim of clarifying and streamlining existing burial practices as well as introducing new provisions; including the management of burial grounds and restoration of lairs.
Closes 17 November 2023

Draft Transformation Action Plan Consultation
Construction Leadership Forum
This consultation seeks feedback to develop a Transformation Action Plan. A Transformation Action Plan is intended to support the Just Transition to Net Zero, construction quality, improved construction procurement, investment in jobs, training and ongoing CPD, developed MMC knowledge, and a digitally enabled industry.
Closes 17 November 2023

The Agricultural and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill Consultation
The Rural Affairs and Islands Committee
This consultation seeks input on the Bill which would be used as a framework for Scottish ministers to better develop the support that farming and rural communities need. The committee planning to take oral evidence from late November through to early February before reporting to the Scottish Parliament with its recommendations in spring 2024.
Closes 24 November 2023

*LAST CALL* Call for Ideas on Planning System Ambitions
The Improvement Service / Scottish Government
This consultation seeks to obtain the views on proposed increases to the building warrant fees required to deliver change to strengthen the building standards system and the development of a new building warrant fees model in Scotland.
Closes 30 November 2023

*NEW* Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill
The Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee has launched a consultation on the Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill.
Closes 8 December 2023

*NEW* Education Bill provisions: consultation
Scottish Government
A consultation on a new national qualifications body and a new approach to inspection of education in Scotland, including elements of the proposed Education Bill.
Closes 18 December 2023

Proposed Desecration of War Memorials (Prevention) (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Parliament
This consultation relates to a draft proposal lodged as the first stage in the process of introducing a Member’s Bill in the Scottish Parliament, to ensure that war memorials in Scotland receive the protection that they deserve by creating the specific offence of desecration of a war memorial.
Closes 19 December 2023

Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park
Historic Environment Scotland (HES)
This survey on the Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park will gather public views to help deliver a new future for the Park that reflects community aspirations, the needs of the City and the inherent value and sensitivity of Holyrood Park.
Closes 19 December 2023

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

CONSULTATIONS RESPONSES

Scottish Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs) consultation: Scottish Government response (Scot Gov 07/11/2023)

Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs): consultation analysis – final analysis report on the responses to the consultation on Scottish Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs) which ran from 12 December 2022 to 17 April 2023. (Scot Gov 07/11/2023)

Local Living and 20 Minute Neighbourhood – draft planning guidance: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 09/11/2023)

NEWS RELEASES

Enter the sustainability category for the Museums + Heritage Awards 2024 (Heritage Fund 01/11/2023)

Minister Noonan launches €9 million in funding for 2024 built heritage schemes (Government Ireland 02/11/2023)

Decarbonising the built environment celebrated at A to Z Awards (Scottish Construction Now 03/11/2023)

Scottish Liberal Democrat Conference calls for government support for removing dangerous concrete (Scot Lib Dems 04/11/2023)

UK museums agree to collective action to tackle the climate crisis (The Guardian 06/11/2023)

Scottish Government confirms ‘very disappointing’ delay to climate change plan (The Independent 07/11/2023)

hub South West forum discusses barriers facing Scotland’s construction sector (Project Scotland 09/11/2023)

CIOB welcomes Scottish legislation to tackle unsafe cladding (Construction Management 13/11/2023)

Fuel poverty dataset added to Improvement Service Spatial Hub (Improvement Service 13/11/2023)

Latest UK Heritage Pulse results: Governance (UK Heritage Pulse 14/11/2023)

New planning guidance for Tall Buildings in Glasgow city centre being developed (Glasgow Gov 15/11/2023)

PUBLICATIONS

It’ll Be Great When It’s Finished – Film charting the birth of Glasgow Building Preservation Trust and sets it within the wider context of changing attitudes and approaches to heritage 40 years on (Glasgow Buildings Trust 24/10/2023)

Managing Change in the Historic Environment: Fire and Historic Buildings. Non statuary guidance note sets out the principles of fire safety in historic buildings (Historic Environment Scotland 31/10/2023)

Toward a Wellbeing Economy: The Distribution of Wellbeing in the UK. Report looking at how wellbeing varies between different parts of the UK and what drives these differences. (BiGGAR Economics 03/11/2023)

RTPI State of the Profession 2023 – The UK Planning profession in numbers. Report looking at the 22,000 planning professionals are working in the UK and how they play an essential role in tackling the modern challenges of the 21st century, from climate change adaptation to the housing crisis. (RTPI 06/11/2023)

The economic impact of university research funding – report focusing on the return of investment for public research and development in the UK, comparing Scotland to other regions in the UK, and outlining different approaches to estimating the return of investment in research. (Fraser of Allander Institute 09/11/2023)

Make Your Mark – Inclusive Volunteering Toolkit & Report. Toolkit and report to support voluntary organisations to be more inclusive. Part of Our Place in Time and Scotland’s Volunteering Action Plan. (Make Your Mark Volunteering Action Group 11/11/2023)

SCOTTISH & UK: GOVERNMENTAL & PARLIAMENTARY PUBLICATIONS

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee [Draft] (Scot Parl 31/10/2023)

Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill: the Presiding Officer requires a financial resolution for the Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill under Rule 9.12 (Scot Parl 01/11/2023)

Letter from Minister for Community Wealth and Public Finance (Scot Parl 01/11/2023)

The Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill has been introduced (Scot Parl 01/11/2023)

Environmental principles policy statement (UK Gov 01/11/2023) Devolved matter in Scotland.

Delegated powers in the Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill at Stage 1 report (Scot Parl 02/11/2023)

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee: pre-budget scrutiny 2024-25 and the Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 02/11/2023)

National Transition Training Fund (NTTF): year two report Scot Gov 03/11/2023)

Green Heat Finance Taskforce minutes (Scot Gov 03/11/2023)

Education and Skills Reform: Education Secretary statement by Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, Jenny Gilruth (Scot Gov 07/11/2023)

Planning permission appeals: housing development statistic – Planning permission appeal statistics for housing developments involving 10 or more houses since January 2015 (Scot Gov 07/11/2023)

Pre-budget Scrutiny 2024-25: Funding Our Culture – Report detailing the challenges, innovations and How the ‘perfect storm’ facing the culture sector has evolved over the last 12 months (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Scottish Government Draft Climate Change Plan – Letter from the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill Committee Public Paper (Scot Parl 07/11/2023).

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee – Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill Meeting Notes (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

The Public Audit Committee has written to the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee regarding how parliamentary committees can work together to scrutinise the Scottish Government’s draft Climate Change Plan (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee 31st Meeting, 2023 (Session 6) Tuesday, 7 November 2023 Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Proposed Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill final draft consultation summary (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee meeting minutes (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee [Draft] (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Education Reform: A Consultation on the provisions of the Education Bill (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee [Draft] (Scot Parl 07/11/2023)

Energy Security and Net Zero Committee Oral evidence: A flexible Grid for the future (UK Parl 08/11/2023)

PE2063: Increase funding for local authorities to enable better management and protection of conservation areas (Scot Parl 08/11/2023)

Government response to the Environment and Climate Change Committee report ‘An extraordinary challenge: Restoring 30 per cent of our land and sea by 2030’ (UK Parl 08/11/2023)

Scottish Government response to the Committees report on Culture in Communities (Scot Parl 09/11/2023)

The Value Added Tax (Refunds to “Do-It-Yourself” Builders) (Amendment of Method and Time for Making Claims) Regulations 2023 – Statutory Instrument (UK Gov 10/11/2023)

How is Scotland Performing? Scotland’s performance measured against the National Performance Framework (SPICe Scot Parl 13/11/2023)

Aggregates Tax and Devolved Taxes Administration (Scotland) Bill (Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee meeting (Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee – Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill meeting(Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee – Council Tax Freeze meeting (Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee (Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Building standards approved energy assessment software: guidance
(Scot Gov 14/11/2023)

Council Tax Reduction: local authority tables and charts – April 2013 to September 2023
(Scot Gov 14/11/2023)

Modern methods of construction – what’s gone wrong? Oral evidence from Dr Suzanne Peters and Prof Jonatan Pinkse (Scot Parl 14/11/2023)

Education, Children, and Young People Committee report by James Withers on the Independent Review of the Skills Delivery Landscape (Scot Parl 15/11/2023)

OPINION & COMMENT

Who pays the price of long short-termism? (David Hume Institute 02/11/2023)

What a retrofit-first approach offers the UK (RICS 03/11/2023)

Five things we learned from Scotland’s Housing (Cladding Remediation) Bill (Inside Housing 06/11/2023)

Business leaders warns SNP ministers against ‘sacrificing’ investment in skills (The Scotsman 06/11/2023)

Shetland: ‘We must build better’ architect says as he moves into new Passive House (Scottish Beacon (07/11/2023)

SNP-Green Government poised to delay climate change plan (The Herald 07/11/2023)

Culture still in middle of “perfect storm” (All Edinburgh Theatre 07/11/2023)

Scottish cultural traditions ‘at risk of being lost’ to time (The National 07/11/2023)

‘Desperately disappointing’ and ‘missed opportunity’: sector responds to King’s Speech(Inside Housing 07/11/2023)

Housing: Use old buildings to tackle crisis, says charity (BBC News 08/11/2023)

Edinburgh Council ‘at odds’ with Scottish Government over STL control area, court hears(Edinburgh News 09/11/2023)

Church closures Scotland: ‘Existential crisis’ as up to 700 churches predicted to close across Scotland by end of decade (The Scotsman 11/11/2023)

National Portrait Gallery head says museums ‘can’t afford to be activists’ (The Times 12/11/2023)

New planning guidance for Tall Buildings in Glasgow city centre being developed (Project Scotland 14/11/2023)

Devil will be in detail of the Scottish Government’s new Housing Bill (The National 14/11/2023)

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

Questions marked with a triangle (?) are initiated by the Scottish Government to facilitate the provision of information to the Parliament. Questions in which a member has indicated a declarable interest are marked with an “R”.

Willie Rennie, MSP for North East Fife, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 07/11/2023
S6W-22628
To ask the Scottish Government how many households (a)(i) were eligible for and (ii) received support in each year of phase one and (b)(1) are eligible for and (2) will receive support in each year of phase two, of the Warmer Homes Scotland scheme.
Current status: Answer expected on 21 November 2023

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/10/2023
S6W-22067
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its work to take forward a review of the expressive arts curricular area, as set out in its response to the recommendations from the National Partnership for Culture. 
Current status: Answer expected on 06 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 11/10/2023
S6W-22090
To ask the Scottish Government what support it has provided for town centre regeneration in each year since 1999.
Current status: Answered by Joe FitzPatrick on 06 November 2023. 

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 24/10/2023
S6W-22384
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will consult on proposals to establish a Future Generations Commissioner by the end of 2023. 
S6W-22385
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-07586 by Patrick Harvie on 7 April 2022, whether it will set out proposals for a Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Bill by the end of 2023. 
Current status: Answered by Shona Robinson on 06 November 2023. 

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/11/2023
S6W-22683
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has any plans to increase the funding available to preserve the heritage of Scotland’s churches and chapels, in light of the reported announcement by the Church of Scotland that it is to close and sell up to 40% of its churches.
S6W-22684
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has any plans to introduce an equivalent scheme to the Community Facilities Programme in Wales, which provides small and large grants to community and voluntary sector organisations to improve community facilities that are well used by local people, such as churches, post offices and community shops.
Current status: Answers expected on 20 November 2023

Jackie Dunbar, MSP for Aberdeen Donside, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 06/11/2023
S6W-22775
To ask the Scottish Government what progress it is making with the UK Government on climate policy, and whether there it will provide an update on the timing of its draft Climate Change Plan.
Current status: Answered by Mairi McAllan on 7 November 2023

Monica Lennon, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 06/11/2023
S6W-22701
To ask the Scottish Government when the Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development last met with COSLA to discuss culture; what was discussed at this meeting, and when the Minister will next meet with COSLA to discuss these issues.
Current status: Answers expected on 20 November 2023

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/10/2023
S6W-22063 R
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to introduce a similar scheme in Scotland to the Museum Estate and Development Fund (MEND) delivered by Arts Council England, which is an open-access capital fund for non-national accredited museums and local authorities to apply for funding to undertake vital infrastructure and urgent maintenance that are beyond the scope of day-to-day maintenance budgets. 
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 3 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged:
01/11/2023
S6W-22592
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment has been made of (a) the use and (b) any potential fire risks of spray insulation in buildings.
Current status:
Answered by Patrick Harvie on 14 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 01/11/2023
S6W-22600
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to introduce a register of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete held and inspected by all public sector bodies.
Current status: Answer expected on 15 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 01/11/2023
S6W-22607
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to whether the introduction of a Building Safety Levy would be an obstacle to investment in the construction sector.
S6W-22608
To ask the Scottish Government what modelling it has undertaken of any wider economic impact of the introduction of a Building Safety Levy.
Current status: Answers expected on 15 November 2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 24/10/2023
S6W-22356
To ask the Scottish Government, in relation to its £500 million strategic investment to help create thousands of green jobs and deliver the full economic potential of offshore renewables projects, as announced on 17 October 2023, whether it will propose the scheduling of time for a ministerial statement, or use other appropriate means, to update the Parliament on its plans. 
Current status: Answered by Gillian Martin on 31 October 2023

Brian Whittle, MSP for South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 02/11/2023
S6W-22644
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-21208 by Patrick Harvie on 26 September 2023, what the (a) smallest, (b) median and (c) largest (i) grant and (ii) loan issued under the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme was in the period from September 2022 to date, broken down by (A) local authority area, (B) household income and (C) council tax band.
S6W-22645
To ask the Scottish Government what key performance indicators it uses to measure the success of the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme, in terms of the improvements to energy efficiency delivered by funded works.
S6W-22646
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how many Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) certified installers are employed within Scotland, broken down by local authority area.
S6W-22647
To ask the Scottish Government how many students who have completed energy efficiency qualifications have remained in Scotland and are currently employed within the energy efficiency sector.
S6W-22648
To ask the Scottish Government how many students are currently pursuing energy efficiency qualifications.
S6W-22649
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on the number of registered heat pump installation businesses in Scotland, and how many qualify as SMEs.
S6W-22650
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on the number of registered energy efficiency businesses in Scotland, and how many qualify as SMEs, broken down by local authority area.
S6W-22651
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-21208 by Patrick Harvie on 26 September 2023, how many households have received the rural uplift within the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme in each month since September 2022.
Current status: Answers expected on 16 November 2023

Brian Whittle, MSP for South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged:
02/11/2023
S6W-22656
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to creating a funding scheme to assist with ongoing maintenance costs of renewable heating solutions installed under the current government capital support schemes for (a) housing associations, (b) private homeowners and (c) landlords.
S6W-22657
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the potential impact of future demand for servicing of renewable heating solutions on market rates for (a) labour and (b) parts.
Current status: Answers expected on 16 November 2023

Brian Whittle, MSP for South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged:
02/11/2023
S6W-22660
To ask the Scottish Government whether regular maintenance and servicing are included as terms in the contracts for the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme.
S6W-22661
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the suitability of (a) whole-house renewable heating systems and (b) other renewable solutions for retrofitting on existing housing stock, and how many existing homes it estimates there currently are that are not suitable for retrofitting these systems.
S6W-22662
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to a survey by the Chartered Institute of Building, which reportedly found that 39% of respondents had not heard about Home Energy Scotland schemes.
S6W-22663
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to increase awareness of Home Energy Scotland schemes among people aged over 55.
S6W-22664
To ask the Scottish Government what its position is on the importance of ensuring that the fabric of homes is repaired prior to completing insulation works.
S6W-22665
To ask the Scottish Government what its position is on the importance of ensuring that homes are insulated to standard prior to completing any installation of renewable heating systems.
S6W-22666
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the effectiveness of the current supply chain for heat pump maintenance, including (a) parts, (b) labour and (c) its ability to grow to meet any increasing demand.
S6W-22667
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to prepare future supply chains for heat pump maintenance, including in relation to (a) parts and (b) labour.
S6W-22668
To ask the Scottish Government how many applications in total for loans or grants for energy efficiency measures or clean heating systems were approved in the 2022-23 financial year.
S6W-22669
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide (a) further information on the demographics of the 6,000 applications to the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme since its launch in August 2023 and (b) a breakdown by (i) the age of applicants, (ii) the median household income of applicants and (iii) local authority area.
S6W-22670
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide (a) further information on the demographics of the 1,900 funding offers through the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme since its launch in August 2023 and (b) a breakdown by (i) the age of applicants, (ii) the median household income of applicants and (iii) local authority area.
S6W-22671
To ask the Scottish Government what information it has on how many people there are in Scotland who are qualified to undertake heat loss surveys, broken down by local authority area.
S6W-22672
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reported statements from industry that current funding for energy efficiency retrofit projects needs to be more flexible and distributed from fewer sources.
S6W-22673
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the current construction skills landscape, and what plans it has to target and develop particular sectors within the construction industry based on any such assessment.
S6W-22674
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its publication, Heat in Buildings: progress report 2023 , how much funding was available for the Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme, and what the total spend in the form of grants and loans was, in the 2022-23 financial year.
S6W-22675
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that sufficient numbers of qualified insulation contractors are available to meet demand.
Current status: Answers expected on 16 November 2023

Graham Simpson, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged:
 02/11/2023
S6W-22629
To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to improve awareness of home energy upgrades and retrofit schemes, in light of reported data from the Chartered Institute of Buildings, which found that two in five residents cannot afford these upgrades and that 39% of those surveyed had not heard of any Scottish Government incentive schemes.
S6W-22630
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reported problems with affordability and low awareness of home energy upgrades and retrofit schemes.
Current status: Answer expected on 16 November 2023

Paul Sweeney, MSP for Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 02/11/2023
S6W-22636
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the overall risk of fire in relation to Scotland’s pre-1945 building stock.
Current status: Answered by Siobhian Brown on 10 November 2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 02/11/2023
S6W-22639
To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on how many (a) public sector buildings, (b) privately-owned homes and (c) housing association homes have double glazing that was installed before 2002.
Current status: Answer expected on 16 November 2023

Liam Kerr, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/09/2023
S6W-21919
To ask the Scottish Government how many applications it has received for the second round of funding for the Just Transition Fund.
S6W-21920
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on whether the £20 million that was allocated in the first round of the Just Transition Fund has been distributed in its entirety.
Current status: Answered by Richard Lochhead on 1 November 2023

Pam Gosal, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 23/10/2023
S6W-22265
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the impact of the decision to reinstate the £6.6 million reduction of the Creative Scotland budget.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 1 November 2023

Mark Ruskell, MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Green Party
Date lodged: 06/10/2023
S6W-22077
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the contribution of its latest Infrastructure Investment Plan to meeting Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets.
S6W-22078
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on (a) its position on aligning its Infrastructure Investment Plan (IIP) with Scotland’s pathway for achieving net zero and (b) whether it has discussed creating a new methodology for assessing the contribution of individual infrastructure projects within the IIP to greenhouse gas reduction efforts.
Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 2 November 2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 24/10/2023
S6W-22355
To ask the Scottish Government whether it has set any targets on the number of jobs to be created through the £500 million strategic investment to help create thousands of green jobs and deliver the full economic potential of offshore renewables projects, as announced on 17 October 2023.
Current status: Answered by Gillian Martin on 2 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
S6W-22779
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for people undertaking respite breaks.
S6W-22780
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for children and young people.
S6W-22781
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for workers and business travellers.
S6W-22782
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for school, college and university trips.
S6W-22783
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for outward bound education visits.
S6W-22784
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for youth groups.
S6W-22785
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for people resident in the local authority area where a visitor levy is in place.
S6W-22786
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for charities and third sector workers.
S6W-22787
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for medical professionals working in Scotland.
S6W-22788
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for military personnel working in Scotland.
S6W-22789
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to provide for exemption schemes in the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill for refugees staying in temporary accommodation in Scotland.
Current status: Answers expected on 22 November 2023

Monica Lennon, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
S6W-22387
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-15639 from Elena Whitham on 6 March 2023, whether it will provide an update on (a) what action it will take and (b) the timescales for any such action, in response to the finding by the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee that Scotland was not in full compliance with access to justice requirements of the Aarhus Convention.
Current status: Answer expected on 22 November 2023

Jackie Dunbar, MSP for Aberdeen Donside, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 20/10/2023
S6W-22325
To ask the Scottish Government how much has been spent on rail infrastructure in each local authority area in each of the last 10 years.
Current status: Answered by Fiona Hyslop on 7 November 2023

Katy Clark, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 13/10/2023
S6W-22224
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12681 by Mairi McAllan on 13 December 2022, whether the second National Marine Plan (NMP2) will require Regional Marine Plans that set specific areas, bounded by grid coordinates, for individual uses of marine space or specific combinations of such uses. S6W-22224
S6W-22225
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12681 by Mairi McAllan on 13 December 2022, whether the second National Marine Plan (NMP2) will require Regional Marine Plans to be produced by a set date.
Current status: Answered by Mairi McAllan on 7 November 2023

Neil Bibby, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
S6W-22536
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the First Minister’s announcement of an additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector on 17 October 2023, how this figure was arrived at; how the funding will be distributed over the next five years, and whether it will be attributed on an annual rolling basis or using a multi-year approach.
S6W-22537
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will publish a timeline outlining when decisions about the distribution of the additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector will be made, and, if so, when.
Current status: Answered by Angus Robertson on 7 November 2023

Neil Bibby, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
S6W-22538
To ask the Scottish Government what the additional £100 million of funding for arts and culture includes, and, in particular, whether it includes an explicit increase to the national performing companies annual budget line for the next five years.
S6W-22539
To ask the Scottish Government when the Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, External Affairs and Culture was first made aware of the First Minister’s decision to announce an additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector on 17 October 2023.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 7 November 2023

Rachael Hamilton, MSP for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 8/11/2023
S6O-02716
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what plans it has to restore a reported £6.6 million reduction in funding to Creative Scotland for 2024-25.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 15 November 2023

Kaukab Stewart, MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 8/11/2023
S6O-02718
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its commitment to increase funding for the arts and culture sector.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 15 November 2023

James Dornan, MSP for Glasgow Cathcart, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 8/11/2023
S6O-02729
To ask the Scottish Government what preparations are being made to implement the recommendations of the Independent Review of the Skills Delivery Landscape.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 16 November 2023

Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/10/2023
S6W-22414
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the housing stock in each local authority area is comprised of homes within buildings constructed before 1914.
S6W-22415
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answers to questions S6W-21728 and S6W-21745 by Patrick Harvie on 23 and 24 October 2023 respectively, what discussions it has had with Historic Environment Scotland on approaches to retrofitting traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22416
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answers to questions S6W-21728 and S6W-21745 by Patrick Harvie on 23 and 24 October 2023 respectively, which stakeholders it (a) has had and (b) plans to have discussions with on approaches to retrofitting traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22417
To ask the Scottish Government what research it (a) has conducted and (b) plans to conduct into the results of various energy efficiency interventions on traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22418
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the housing stock in each local authority area is comprised of homes within traditional buildings.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 8 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22594
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, what work has been undertaken to provide for exemption schemes for people visiting family members in hospital.
S6W-22595
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, what work has been undertaken to provide for exemption schemes for people visiting family members in prison.
S6W-22596
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, what work has been undertaken to provide for exemption schemes for people providing personal care for a family member.
S6W-22597
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, what work has been undertaken to provide for exemption schemes for artists and technicians working at festivals.
S6W-22598
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, what work has been undertaken to provide for exemption schemes for people attending a funeral.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 8 November 2023

Rachael Hamilton, MSP for Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 26/10/2023
S6W-22461
To ask the Scottish Government when it will publish its analysis of the consultation responses on Highly Protected Marine Areas, which was launched in December 2022.
Current status: Answered by Mairi McAllan on 8 November 2023

Sharon Dowey, MSP for South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22574
To ask the Scottish Government what plans are in place to review non-domestic rates, particularly for hospitality businesses.
Current status: Answered by Tom Arthur on 8 November 2023

Mark Griffin, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22778
To ask the Scottish Government what review it has undertaken of the impact of Regulation 6 of the Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications) (Scotland) Regulations 2022, which provides planning authorities with the power to levy a surcharge of up to 25% on retrospective applications as a means of recovering the costs of undertaking enforcement investigations.
Current status: Answer expected on 24 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22791
To ask the Scottish Government what information it has on how many people have been charged up to double the normal council tax rate for homes that have been empty for 12 months or more, or 24 months where the property is being actively marketed for sale, in each year since 1999, also broken down by local authority.
Current status: Answer expected on 24 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22796
To ask the Scottish Government, further to previous commitments by its ministers, how much funding in total it has allocated to each City Region Deal to date, also broken down by project.
Current status: Answer expected on 24 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
S6W-22842
To ask the Scottish Government what funding it is providing for colleges to deliver courses on the traditional trades.
S6W-22843
To ask the Scottish Government what funding it is providing for college courses in the traditional crafts, particularly stonemasonry, at colleges in Edinburgh.
Current status: Answers expected on 24 November 2023

Willie Rennie, MSP for North East Fife, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 26/10/2023
S6W-22487
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S6W-12674 by Mairi McAllan on 14 December 2022, whether it will provide an update on which of the 42 formal flood protection schemes or engineering works are (a) under construction and (b) at the planning or other stage of development, broken down by (i) the expected completion date, including the reason for any date being beyond the 2021 timeframe, (ii) the number of properties that will be protected and (iii) the (A) initial forecast and (B) final expected cost of each.
Current status: Answered by Mairi McAllan on 9 November 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22599
Miles Briggs (Lothian) (Con): To ask the Scottish Government when it plans to undertake a review of legislation relating to the Home Report.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 10 November 2023

Monica Lennon, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 13/10/2023
S6W-22209
To ask the Scottish Government how much total funding it allocated to (a) improve energy efficiency and (b) decarbonise the heating of homes in (i) social, (ii) owner-occupied and (iii) private rented housing in (A) 2021-22, (B) 2022-23 and (C) 2023-24.
S6W-22210
To ask the Scottish Government how much of the £1.8 billion Heat in Buildings funding has been spent to date, and what the forecast trajectory is of spending to the end of the current parliamentary session.
S6W-22211
To ask the Scottish Government how much funding has been allocated to (a) Warmer Homes Scotland, (b) Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS) area based schemes, (c) Home Energy Scotland grants and loans for energy efficiency and zero emissions heating and (d) Home Energy Scotland advice and support services, in (i) 2021-22, (ii) 2022-23 and (iii) 2023-24.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 10 November 2023

Monica Lennon, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 06/11/2023
S6W-22701
Monica Lennon (Central Scotland) (Lab): To ask the Scottish Government when the Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development last met with COSLA to discuss culture; what was discussed at this meeting, and when the Minister will next meet with COSLA to discuss these issues.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 10 November 2023

Paul Sweeney, MSP for Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 02/11/2023
S6W-22636
Paul Sweeney (Glasgow) (Lab): To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the overall risk of fire in relation to Scotland’s pre-1945 building stock.
Current status: Answered by Siobhian Brown on 10 November 2023

Kate Forbes, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, Scottish National Party
Date lodged
: 30/10/2023
S6W-22531
To ask the Scottish Government as part of its post-implementation review into short-term let licensing, whether it plans to undertake any stakeholder engagement and consultation ahead of the review, and what the nature of any stakeholder involvement in the review will be.
S6W-22532
To ask the Scottish Government when it will commence its post-implementation review into short-term let licensing; what the scope, remit and nature of this work is; what the timeline is for the completion of the review, and when it plans to report to (a) ministers and (b) the Parliament on its findings.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 13 November 2023

MOTIONS

Designation of Lead Committee
S6M-11147
Submitted by: George Adam, Paisley, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged:  07/11/2023
That the Parliament agrees that the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee be designated as the lead committee in consideration of the Housing (Cladding Remediation) (Scotland) Bill at stage 1.

Borders Student Wins National Young Roofer of the Year Award
S6M-11131
Submitted by: Rachael Hamilton, Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
That the Parliament congratulates Hamish Morgan, of Hume Roofing and Property Maintenance in Hawick, on receiving the National Federation of Roofing Contractors Scottish Young Roofer of the Year title; notes that this award was given to Hamish at the recent awards ceremony in Glasgow; understands that Hamish had received the highest available grading by the college staff in his studies and was also awarded Apprentice of the Year at Edinburgh College; further understands that Hamish also won the Scottish heat of SkillBuild, which is the largest multi-trade skills competition in the UK for construction trainees and apprentices, and wishes the Borders student every success in Milton Keynes when he represents Scotland in the UK final of SkillBuild later in November 2023.

Culture in Communities: The Challenges and Opportunities in Delivering a Place-based Approach
S6M-11153
Submitted by: Clare Adamson, Motherwell and Wishaw, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 08/11/2023
That the Parliament notes the conclusions and recommendations contained in the Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee’s 4th Report, 2023 (Session 6), Culture in Communities: The challenges and opportunities in delivering a place-based approach (SP Paper 431).

Council Tax (Variation for Unoccupied Dwellings) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2023 [draft]
S6M-11186
Submitted by: Tom Arthur, Renfrewshire South, Scottish National Party.
Date lodged: 10/11/2023
That the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee recommends that the Council Tax (Variation for Unoccupied Dwellings) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2023 [draft] be approved.

EVENTS

Heritage Trust Network – Rescue, Reuse & Regenerate Series
Date & Time: Ongoing series, next Thursday 16 November; 2:30-4pm
Location: Online
What do we need to do to ensure a future for our town and city centres? Where are the successful initiatives and partnerships? See how independent community-led organisations are working with local authorities to bring life back to our high streets. Join Heritage Trust Network for an online event series that will explore case studies and expert opinions on how we can Rescue, Reuse and Regenerate our town centres.

The Institution of Engineering and Technology – Powering Net Zero Week
Date & Time: 14-17 November 2023
Location: Crowne Plaza, Glasgow
A forum for engineers, planners and innovators to meet, learn, and discuss all the most pertinent issues relating to engineering solutions to net zero. Topics for learning and discussion include the latest wind, solar PV and hydropower technologies, infrastructure planning and investment, demand side management, energy storage and EV charging integration with the grid, electrification load forecasting, battery technology for electric transport and energy storage, and fuel cell development.

RSA Fellows’ MCICH Network – Arts & Culture at the Core of Cultural Philanthropy
Date & Time: Tuesday 21 November; 6-7:30pm
Location: Online
An online event, exploring arts and culture in relation to philanthropy. Speakers include Lucia Patuzzi (Philea, Italy) and RSA Fellows Shonaig Macpherson (Culture Summit), Graham Bell (Cultura Trust and Europa Nostra) and Dr Rupert Graf Strachwitz (Maecenata Institute, Germany).

The Improvement Service and Planning Aid Scotland – Improvement Service for Community Councils – Local Place Plans
Date & Time: Tuesday 21 November; 6-7pm
Location: Online
Local Place Plans are a new right enshrined in planning legislation for communities to prepare a plan for their own place. The webinar will provide an overview of Local Place Plans, and how they are different from other types of community-led plan. It will also look at what the key requirements are in terms of preparing a Local Place Plan, and at some examples of Local Place Plans that have already been prepared. There will be plenty of time for discussion so please come along with any questions.

Architecture & Design Scotland – Place Forum: Thinking big, thinking beyond
Date & Time: Wednesday 22 November; 11am-1pm
Location: Online
Join Architecture and Design Scotland for the next Place Forum where they will be looking at whole place design and collaborative approaches. The question they ask is ‘How do we explore and collaborate with place and people to help embrace the ‘scale’ of vision required for the future’ Confirmed speakers include: Brendan Turvey of NatureScot, Lisa MacKenzie and Anais Chanon of ESALA and Alistair Shaw of Falkirk Council.

Edinburgh Futures Institute – Conservation and heritage buildings archetype & low-carbon heating approach
Date & Time: Friday 24 November; 9:30-1:30pm
Location: Edinburgh Climate Change Institute (Conference Room)
Workshop 3: Conservation and heritage buildings archetype and low-carbon heating approach. Part of the Workshop series on Scottish building. In a facilitated discussion, we will explore current approaches to this challenge, future visions and potential opportunities related to novel ways of gathering data, maximising data efficiency, utilising citizen science, and galvanising stakeholders.

RSA Fellows’ MCICH Network – Perspectives on International Cultural Relations
Date & Time: Tuesday 28 November; 6-7:30pm
Location: Online
An online event exploring different perspectives on international cultural relations. Speakers include Svetlana Sequira Costa FRSA (Arts Cabinet), Dr Ines Fialho Brandao FRSA (Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon), Sylwia Spooner (Polish Consulate, Edinburgh) and Professor Gayle Macpherson FRSA (UWS).

Historic Environment Scotland – Ar Dàimhean is Dualchas / Our Relationships and Heritage
Date & Time: Tuesday 28 November; 6:30-8pm
Location: Online
An online, interactive workshop to explore how we can improve the ways we work together to protect and promote local heritage practicess.

Scotland’s Towns Conference 2023: Delivering Towns for All
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 9am-5pm
Location: Apex Hotel, Dundee
Join Scotland’s Towns Partnership and around 200 industry stakeholders for this year’s Scotland’s Towns Conference – Delivering towns for all. Scotland aims to deliver places for all – a wellbeing economy – creating equality and opportunity for an economy that ensures our towns, neighbourhoods and communities are thriving, engaging and viable for all.

BEFS/SPAB – Scotland’s Churches in Transition: Planning for the Future
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 9:30am-4pm
Location: The Ramshorn, 98 Ingram Street, Glasgow
SPAB and BEFS are delighted to jointly host this CPD Conference for decision makers across the planning and built environment sector. A huge number of churches are in transition, with some in the process of being assessed and sold on the open market. Changes of use and ownership such as these may often mean the sites will no longer be covered by Ecclesiastical Exemption.

Glasgow City Heritage Trust – Annie’s Loo: Flushing Out the Past & Retrofitting for the Future
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 7-8pm
Location: Fairfield Heritage, Govan, G51 4XS
Join Raymond Young, who wrote the book on Annie’s Loo, and Carmen Lean from Loco Home Retrofit to hear more about the history of Annie’s Loo and how we can make tenement retrofit accessible.

Icon Scotland Group 2023 AGM
Date & Time: Thursday 30 November; 5:30-6:15pm
Location: The Engine Shed, Stirling
Join the Icon Scotland Group committee to discuss everything we’ve been doing in 2023, and everything we have planned for 2024. Tickets are free and you can join us whether you’re an Icon member or considering joining.

Icon Scotland Group – 26th Annual Plenderleith Memorial Lecture
Date & Time: Thursday 30 November; 6:30-8:30pm
Location: The Engine Shed, Stirling and Online
Join Icon Scotland for a lecture in memory of Dr Harold Plenderleith, one of the key founders of modern conservation. Our invited speaker is Professor Christina Young, Director of the Kelvin Centre for Conservation and Cultural Heritage Research, University of Glasgow. Christina will reflect on how the Kelvin Centre addresses issues facing the conservation landscape in Scotland and helps promote and support the conservation profession.

Heritage Trust Network – Local Authority Information Session with Heritage Trust Network
Date & Time: Tuesday, 5 December 10-11am
Location: Online
The Heritage Trust Network are running a free information session to share how the Heritage Trust Network might be able to support you or the groups you work with. There will be a short presentation on our work, including a discussion on Buildings at Risk, followed by a case study from one of HTN members and a relaxed discussion.

TRAINING

Scottish Civic Trust – Inclusive heritage training
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 1-2:15pm
Location: Online
Join the Scottish Civic Trust for a free inclusive heritage training session for local civic, heritage and community groups in Scotland. The session will cover key terms related to inclusion, the benefits of engaging more diverse audiences, mapping possible partners and how to build mutually beneficial partnerships with excluded audiences.

VACANCIES

Scottish Historic Buildings Trust – Director
Salary: Competitive salary commensurate with experience
Status: Full-time
Location: Edinburgh.
Scottish Historic Buildings Trust (SHBT) is a dynamic and innovative charity which plays a unique role in preserving and promoting the nation’s heritage, with over 40 years’ experience delivering complex projects that regenerate neglected historic buildings and give them a sustainable future. SHBT holds a property portfolio of important historic buildings that are available to lease or hire for offices, events and functions. SHBT are seeking a highly motivated and experienced Director to lead this Building Preservation Trust, providing strategic vision, financial management and leadership.

Heritage Trust Network – Scotland Trustee
Salary: Voluntary w/ expenses covered
Status: Mix of in-person & online meetings including four board member meetings and annual conference
Location: Scotland
The Heritage Trust Network is currently recruiting for a Scotland Trustee position. ‘We are recruiting a new trustee to ensure continuity, bring in new experiences and perspectives, and diversify our board.’

BACK

Get The Latest Built Environment News, Policy Developments, Publications & Consultations

BEFS News

The team had a visit to BEFS Members The Ridge Foundations, a fantastic charity serving Dunbar and the surrounding villages in East Lothian with jobs, training and support around local heritage, you can read BEFS Director’s personal reflection on the visit, here.

As the clocks go back and weather gets colder the resilience of our buildings becomes ever more apparent. A new survey by the Chartered Institute of Building reports that two in five Scottish residents can’t afford energy upgrades. Whether old or new, there can be housing issues, the poor state of Britain’s new housing is reported in The Guardian and a new BBC documentary series.

This week the Levelling-up and Regeneration Act has received Royal Assent. You can read The Heritage Alliance’s briefing for the Bill in formation, here. It seems that on Assent the Act does have heritage specific clauses, although these may be part of a staged process, and some actions will, in due course require secondary legislation in due course.

BEFS bring you a wealth of events and training this month, including the BEFS/SPAB CPD Conference, Scotland’s Churches in Transition: Planning for the Future. The Heritage Alliance’s Heritage Debate 2023 puts Careers in the spotlight asking, ‘How Can We Future-Proof the Heritage Sector Workforce?’. If you’re interested in heritage careers, have a look at the BEFS/THA/Heriot Watt Heritage Career Guide updated earlier this year. The Scottish Civic Trust are also hosting free Inclusive heritage Training for local civic, heritage and community groups in Scotland.

Consultations of note include: The Improvement Service Call for Ideas on planning system ambitions, and from the Scottish Parliament The Agricultural and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill which will be used to better develop the support that farming and rural communities need. There has already been some small success with lobbying from CIfA and other Members in the sector to get the historic environment acknowledged within the Bill, this can be seen in Part 4 – Power to Provide Support.

And finally, BEFS Conservation Officers Group welcomes new chair Dr Alison McCandlish. You can read more on our blog here and a huge thanks go to outgoing, and foundation, Chair Mark Douglas.

Consultations

Management of burial grounds, application for burial, exhumation, private burial and restoration of lairs: regulation in Scotland
Scottish Government
The consultation paper sets out a range of proposals and approaches with the aim of clarifying and streamlining existing burial practices as well as introducing new provisions; including the management of burial grounds and restoration of lairs.
Closes 17 November 2023

*NEW* Draft Transformation Action Plan Consultation
Construction Leadership Forum
This consultation seeks feedback to develop a Transformation Action Plan. A Transformation Action Plan is intended to support the Just Transition to Net Zero, construction quality, improved construction procurement, investment in jobs, training and ongoing CPD, developed MMC knowledge, and a digitally enabled industry.
Closes 17 November 2023

*NEW* The Agricultural and Rural Communities (Scotland) Bill Consultation
The Rural Affairs and Islands Committee
This consultation seeks input on the Bill which would be used as a framework for Scottish ministers to better develop the support that farming and rural communities need. The committee planning to take oral evidence from late November through to early February before reporting to the Scottish Parliament with its recommendations in spring 2024.
Closes 24 November 2023

*NEW* Call for Ideas on Planning System Ambitions
The Improvement Service / Scottish Government
This consultation seeks to obtain the views on proposed increases to the building warrant fees required to deliver change to strengthen the building standards system and the development of a new building warrant fees model in Scotland.
Closes 30 November 2023

Proposed Desecration of War Memorials (Prevention) (Scotland) Bill
Scottish Parliament
This consultation relates to a draft proposal lodged as the first stage in the process of introducing a Member’s Bill in the Scottish Parliament, to ensure that war memorials in Scotland receive the protection that they deserve by creating the specific offence of desecration of a war memorial.
Closes 19 December 2023

Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park
Historic Environment Scotland (HES)
This survey on the Outline Strategic Plan for Holyrood Park will gather public views to help deliver a new future for the Park that reflects community aspirations, the needs of the City and the inherent value and sensitivity of Holyrood Park.
Closes 19 December 2023

National Parks in Scotland
Scottish Government
The Scottish Government invites individuals, communities and organisations to develop and submit formal nominations for their area to become Scotland’s next National Park.
Closes 29 February 2024

Survey Buildings at Risk Register (BARR)
Historic Environment Scotland (HES)
HES have commissioned Harlow Consulting, a leading research agency in the heritage sector, to undertake an extensive survey to help HES to understand who uses the Buildings at Risk Register, and the impact it is having.

Consultation Responses

Enhancing the accessibility, adaptability and usability of Scotland’s Homes (BEFS 19/10/2023)
BEFS statement supports measures that increase the accessibility and usability of Scotland’s dwellings, improving quality of life and enabling people to stay in their homes for longer – positively contributing to the continued use and occupancy of existing buildings. For any interventions and decisions which impact on traditionally constructed homes and the historic environment, BEFS points to existing guidance on the adaptation of historic or designated properties.

Council tax for second and empty homes, and thresholds for non-domestic rates: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 24/10/23)

Building Community Wealth in Scotland: consultation analysis (Scot Gov 26/10/23)

Mandatory Training on Planning for Elected Members (BEFS 26/10/2023)
BEFS fully supports the proposal for mandatory training on planning for elected members. We would consider that good decision making for people and places recognises the National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4) view that ‘Scotland’s rich heritage, culture and outstanding environment are national assets which support our economy, identity, health and wellbeing’, delivering against the spatial principles within NPF4.

News Releases

European Commission opens calls to invest in data spaces for cultural heritage and tourism (Network of European Museum Organisations 09/10/2023)

Scotland’s plumbing and heating apprenticeship to undergo ‘comprehensive’ review (Project Scotland 19/10/2023)

Patrick Harvie reaffirms commitment to Passivhaus standard (Scottish Housing News 20/10/2023)

Two in five Scottish residents can’t afford energy upgrades says Charted Institute of Building survey (CIOB 25/10/2023)

Call for Papers – The Public Country House: ‘Treasure of Quiet Beauty’ or a Site for Public Histories (V&A 27/10/2023)

The Improvement Service has teamed up with LANDCLAN to help bring its Spatial Hub data to the commercial market (Improvement Service 27/10/2023)

Scottish home on RIBA House of the Year shortlist (Scottish Housing News 31/10/2023)

Publications

Youth participation in cultural heritage management: a conceptual framework (International Journal of Heritage Studies 16/10/2023)

Heat Pump Supply – The Social Market Foundation has published a report on the UK heat pump supply chain (Social Market Foundation 18/10/2023)

One Life Two Cultures – African and Caribbean Elders in Scotland have published their new book of experiences of African and Caribbean Scots over the past 50 years. Its publication was supported by the Scottish Civic Trust Diverse Heritage Project and the Year of Stories 2022 Community Stories Fund. (Scottish Civic Trust 23/10/2023)

Applying the Robbins Principle to Further Education and Apprenticeships report on further education, apprenticeships, and inequality (The Resolution Foundation 24/10/2023)

Learning to grow: How to situate a skills strategy in an economic strategy – report focusing on strategically important sectors to the UK, including finance and business, creativity and culture, life sciences, AI, and clean technology. (The Resolution Foundation 24/10/2023)

Glasgow 2030 Tourism Strategy (Glasgow Tourism and Visitor Plan 27/10/2023)

CIPD report; Devolution and evolution in UK skills policy – report comparing and analysing the labour market in across the four nations, with a focus on skills development policy. Notably, the report analyses the plummet of apprenticeship starts in SMEs in England since the introduction of the apprenticeship levy. (The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development 31/10/2023)

Watt’s the plan? – report highlighting the major infrastructure challenges in the UK and and makes recommendations for a new institutional framework to support investment and delivery. (The Resolution Foundation 01/11/2023)

SFT Outcomes – report disseminating the outcomes corresponding to the business objectives outlined in Scottish Future Trust’s 2019-24 Corporate Plan. The report includes new case studies and analyses of infrastructure needs, investments, innovative construction, technology-enabled construction, and more. (Scottish Futures Trust 02/11/2023)

Scottish & UK: Governmental & Parliamentary Publications

Guidance for custodians on how to deal with commemorative heritage assets that have become contested (UK Gov 05/10/2023) Devolved matter in Scotland.

Letter from the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills (Scot Gov 23 October 2023)

Modern methods of construction – what’s gone wrong? The Built Environment Committee has launched an inquiry into the future of modern methods of construction (MMC) (UK PARL Built Environment Committee 24/10/2023)

Letter from Minister for Community Wealth and Public Finance (Scot Gov 25 October 2023)

Ending homelessness together: annual report 2023 (Scot Gov 26/10/2023)

Heat in Buildings: progress report 2023 (Scot Gov 27/10/2023)

Scotland’s Land Use Strategy Annual Progress Report – 2022/2023 (Scot Gov 27/10/2023)

Letter from the Convener to the Minister for Local Government Empowerment and Planning (Scot Parl 27 October 2023)

Building standards: national annual verification performance report 2022 to 2023 (Scot Gov 31/10/2023)

Letter from the Minister for Housing (Scot Gov 31 October 2023)

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee meeting on the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill (Scot Gov 31 October 2023)

Opinion & Comment

Concrete crisis: What is Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC)? (Twentieth Century Society 06/09/2023)

Why is Keir Starmer ignoring the concrete and steel elephant in the room? (Architects Journal 12/10/2023)

Trads Forget the Past at Their Peril (Failed Architecture 06/10/2023)

How local authorities can benefit from working with the community heritage sector (Heritage Trust Network / ACES Terrier Autumn 2023)

Famous Gallowgate tenement from 1771 now comes with climate control (The Herald 10/10/2023)

Britain’s Housing Crisis: What Went Wrong? (BBC Two 17/10/2023)

Cracked tiles, wonky gutters, leaning walls – why are Britain’s new houses so rubbish? (The Guardian 21/10/2023)

More focus needed on climate and social impact of dull buildings – top designer (The National 21/10/2023)

Sue Bridge: Are the purposes of the green belt still relevant for the 21st century? (RTPI 23/10/2023)

Culture secretary fails to clear up confusion over promise to ‘more than double’ arts funding in Scotland (Scotsman 25/10/2023)

Second National Infrastructure Assessment: the good, the bad and the next steps (RTPI 26/10/2023)

Patrick Harvie Scottish Green Autumn Conference Speech (Scottish Greens 30/10/2023)

City of Edinburgh Council set to declare housing emergency (BBC News 02/11/2023)

The Big Read: What can we do to save Scotland’s towns? (The Herald 02/11/2023)

Parliamentary Questions & Answers

Questions marked with a triangle (?) are initiated by the Scottish Government to facilitate the provision of information to the Parliament. Questions in which a member has indicated a declarable interest are marked with an “R”.

Kenneth Gibson, MSP for Cunninghame North, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 18/10/2023
S6O-02633
To ask the Scottish Government what progress it is making on implementing the recommendations on the skills delivery landscape in the report, Fit for the Future: developing a post-school learning system to fuel economic transformation.
Current status: Taken in the Chamber on 26 October 2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 20/10/2023
S6W-22334
To ask the Scottish Government when any revisions to its onshore wind carbon calculator will be published.
S6W-22335
To ask the Scottish Government how much peatland has been excavated, according to data within onshore wind applications consented to by the Energy Consents Unit, within the last 10 years.
S6W-22336
To ask the Scottish Government how much peatland has been restored, according to data within onshore wind applications consented to by the Energy Consents Unit, within the last 10 years.
S6W-22337
To ask the Scottish Government how much carbon has been emitted as (a) a direct and (b) an indirect result of development on peatland, according to data within onshore wind applications consented to by the Energy Consents Unit, within the last 10 years.
S6W-22338
To ask the Scottish Government what processes are in place to ensure the accuracy and reliability of data inputted into its onshore wind carbon calculator by a prospective developer
Current status: Answers expected on 17/11/2023

Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/10/2023
S6W-22345
To ask the Scottish Government with which organisations it has consulted regarding the development of a Green Industrial Strategy, as committed to in its Programme for Government 2023-24.
S6W-22346
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide more information on how the First Minister’s commitment to “invest up to £500 million to anchor a new offshore wind supply chain” will be delivered.
S6W-22347
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide a timeline for when it expects to deliver the First Minister’s commitment to “invest up to £500 million to anchor a new offshore wind supply chain”.
S6W-22348
To ask the Scottish Government how it will engage with the renewable energy industry in the delivery of the First Minister’s commitment to “invest up to £500 million to anchor a new offshore wind supply chain”.
S6W-22349
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will outline how the First Minister’s commitment to “invest up to £500 million to anchor a new offshore wind supply chain” will be delivered in conjunction with the £500 million Just Transition Fund.
S6W-22350
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the development of a Green Industrial Strategy, as committed to in its Programme for Government 2023-24.
Current status: Answers expected on 08/11/2023

Alex Cole-Hamilton, MSP for Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 29/09/2023
S6W-21882
To ask the Scottish Government what action it has taken to ensure that the key stakeholders in the private sector are aware of the issue of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete and know where to go for advice, as referenced in the minutes of the meeting of the Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC) Cross Sector Working Group on 14 August 2023.
S6W-21883
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the meeting of the Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC) Cross Sector Working Group on 14 August 2023, what action it has taken to “signpost and share information which supports effective assessment and reporting on RAAC as a potential building defect”.
Current status: Answered by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 20 October 2023

Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/10/2023
S6W-22414
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the housing stock in each local authority area is comprised of homes within buildings constructed before 1914.
S6W-22415
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answers to questions S6W-21728 and S6W-21745 by Patrick Harvie on 23 and 24 October 2023 respectively, what discussions it has had with Historic Environment Scotland on approaches to retrofitting traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22416
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answers to questions S6W-21728 and S6W-21745 by Patrick Harvie on 23 and 24 October 2023 respectively, which stakeholders it (a) has had and (b) plans to have discussions with on approaches to retrofitting traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22417
To ask the Scottish Government what research it (a) has conducted and (b) plans to conduct into the results of various energy efficiency interventions on traditional and listed buildings.
S6W-22418
To ask the Scottish Government what proportion of the housing stock in each local authority area is comprised of homes within traditional buildings.
Current status: Answers expected on 08/11/2023

Mark Ruskell, MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Green Party
Date lodged: 25/10/2023
S6W-22436
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what plans it has to support grassroots music venues across Scotland.
S6W-22437
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what assessment it has made of any additional revenue raising tools, such as ticket levies on large music events and areas, to support grassroots music venues and the talent pipeline.
Current status: Answers expected on 08/11/2023

Ben Macpherson, MSP for Edinburgh Northern and Leith, Scottish National Party
S6W-22486
Date lodged: 26/10/2023
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the progress of its Heat in Buildings Strategy.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 27 October 2023

Jamie Greene, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 27/10/2023
S6W-22459
To ask the Scottish Government for what reason Govan Graving Dock was granted £2.4 million for its restoration, and whether any such grants are being considered for other dry docks in similar states of disuse.
Current status: Answer expected on 10/11/2023

Kate Forbes, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
S6W-22531
To ask the Scottish Government, as part of its post-implementation review into short-term let licensing, whether it plans to undertake any stakeholder engagement and consultation ahead of the review, and what the nature of any stakeholder involvement in the review will be.
S6W-22532
To ask the Scottish Government when it will commence its post-implementation review into short-term let licensing; what the scope, remit and nature of this work is; what the timeline is for the completion of the review, and when it plans to report to (a) ministers and (b) the Parliament on its findings.
Current status: Answers expected on 13/11/2023

Neil Bibby, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
S6W-22536
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the First Minister’s announcement of an additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector on 17 October 2023, how this figure was arrived at; how the funding will be distributed over the next five years, and whether it will be attributed on an annual rolling basis, or using a multi-year approach.
S6W-22537
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will publish a timeline outlining when decisions about the distribution of the additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector will be made, and, if so, when.
S6W-22538
To ask the Scottish Government what the additional £100 million of funding for arts and culture includes, and, in particular, whether it includes an explicit increase to the national performing companies annual budget line for the next five years.
S6W-22539
To ask the Scottish Government when the Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, External Affairs and Culture was first made aware of the First Minister’s decision to announce an additional £100 million for the arts and culture sector on 17 October 2023.
Current status: Answer expected on 13/11/2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
S6W-22527
To ask the Scottish Government how many groups are currently being supported by the Community and Renewable Energy Scheme, broken down by local authority area.
S6W-22528
To ask the Scottish Government how much energy is currently generated in Scotland from community and locally owned sources.
S6W-22529
To ask the Scottish Government how much funding was allocated to groups through the Community and Renewable Energy Scheme in (a) 2019, (b) 2020, (c) 2021 and (d) 2022, also broken down by local authority area.
Current status: Answers expected on 13/11/2023

Daniel Johnson, MSP for Edinburgh Southern, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 28/09/2023
S6W-2185
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the Heat in Buildings Workforce Assessment Project outlined in its Heat in Buildings Strategy.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 24 October 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservatives and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22602
To ask the Scottish Government what discussions have taken place regarding the development of an infrastructure levy.
S6W-22603
To ask the Scottish Government what discussions it has had with the UK Government regarding the transfer of powers required to implement its proposed Building Safety Levy.
S6W-22604
To ask the Scottish Government when it plans to publish its proposals for a Building Safety Levy.
S6W-22605
To ask the Scottish Government what work it has undertaken to estimate the costs required for cladding remediation of so-called “orphan” buildings.
S6W-22606
To ask the Scottish Government what formula it plans to use to calculate its proposed Building Safety Levy.
Current status: Answers expected on 14/11/2023

Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 19/09/2023
S6W-21465
To ask the Scottish Government how much it estimates will be the cost of the removal or remedial action required for reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete within the NHS.
Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 4 October 2023

Sarah Boyack, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 20/09/2023
S6W-21288
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its reported plans to amend the Energy Performance (EPC) system, what consideration it has given to how to deal with properties that are off grid, and whose EPC rating may change depending on gas costs, and whether any such properties will be penalised.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 4 October 2023

Tess White, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 19/09/2023
S6W-21458
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the national survey programme of the NHS estate to identify the use of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete in NHS buildings, including the number of buildings at risk and their location.
Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 4 October 2023

Liam Kerr, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/09/2023
S6W-21921
To ask the Scottish Government when an updated Estates Condition Survey for the college sector will be conducted and completed, in light of the last survey, which was completed in 2017 and estimated that £360 million of work was required in the subsequent five years to bring the college estate to a generally sound (wind and watertight) condition.
S6W-21922
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on what progress has been made in developing and delivering a fully costed infrastructure delivery plan for the college sector.
Current status: Answered by Graeme Dey on 27 October 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 31/10/2023
S6W-22599
To ask the Scottish Government when it plans to undertake a review of legislation relating to the Home Report.
Current status: Answer expected on 14 November 2023

Liam Kerr, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/09/2023
S6W-21889
To ask the Scottish Government what the resource funding increase of £46 million for the college and university sectors, announced in the Budget statement on 15 December 2022, was specifically intended to be used for; whether it expects colleges and universities to still proceed with that work, in light of the funding being withdrawn, and, if not, what its position (a) was on the importance of this work in December 2022, in light of its decision to allocate an additional £46 million of funding for it at that time, and (b) is on whether this work is still necessary.
Current status: Answered by Graeme Dey on 30 October 2023

Rhoda Grant, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 03/10/2023
S6W-21970
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide a list of the 30 police buildings that Police Scotland plans to dispose of, as detailed in its proposals submitted to the Scottish Police Authority.
Current status: Answered by Angela Constance on 30 October 2023

Alexander Stewart, MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 03/10/2023
S6W-21929
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of reports that some local residents were required by Clackmannanshire Council to evacuate their homes, in a majority council-owned block of flats, and move into short-term accommodation due to reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete being found and the flats being deemed unsafe, what immediate action it can take to (a) help provide suitable long-term accommodation and (b) support any proposals for repairs of these properties.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 18 October 2023

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/10/2023
S6W-22065
To ask the Scottish Government when it will publish its refreshed Culture Strategy Action Plan, in light of it being delayed from summer 2022 and spring 2023.
Current status: Answered by Angus Robertson on 18 October 2023

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 04/10/2023
S6W-22012
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to develop an artificial intelligence strategy in relation to the culture sector, and how it plans to ensure that any such strategy is safe and ethical in its implementation.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 19 October 2023

Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 03/102023
S6W-21989
To ask the Scottish Government whether it anticipates any workforce pressures in relation to skilled stonemasons in the next 10 years.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 19 October 2023

Pam Gosal, MSP for West Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 23/10/2023
S6W-22265
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the impact of the decision to reinstate the £6.6 million reduction of the Creative Scotland budget.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 01 November 2023

Alexander Stewart, MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 05/10/2023
S6W-22038
To ask the Scottish Government, regarding short-term let licensing, what its position is on whether holiday accommodation providers that have multiple similar premises types on the same site should be required to pay a licence fee for each individual accommodation that they provide.
Current status: Answered by Paul McLennan on 20 October 2023

Donald Cameron, MSP for Highlands and Islands, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 06/10/2023
S6W-22068
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its plans to work jointly across the health and culture portfolios to ensure that culture is represented in social prescribing discussions, as set out in its response to the recommendations from the National Partnership for Culture.
Current status: Answered by Christina McKelvie on 20 October 2023

Liam Kerr, MSP for North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 29/09/2023
S6W-21918
To ask the Scottish Government for what reason its Energy Strategy and Just Transition Plan, which had previously been due to be published in Spring 2022, will now not be available until summer 2024.
Current status: Answered by Gillian Martin on 23 October 2023

Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/09/2023
S6W-21719
To ask the Scottish Government how many properties have had energy efficiency measures installed through funding from the Private Rented Sector Landlord Loan scheme since it was introduced.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 23 October 2023

Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/092023
S6W-21728
To ask the Scottish Government how it plans to apply its proposed energy performance certification reforms to listed buildings, including whether any consideration has been given to (a) exemptions for such properties and (b) changes to regulations governing listed building consent to facilitate net zero retrofitting measures.
Current status: Answered by Patrick Harvie on 23 October 2023

Motions

Apprentice of the Year 2023 Named as Ayr’s Charlie White
S6M-10840
Submitted by: Sharon Dowey, South Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.
Date lodged: 16/10/2023
That the Parliament congratulates Ayr’s Charlie White on being awarded Apprentice of the Year at the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE) Awards; understands that Charlie was presented with this accolade at the APSE Building Maintenance Seminar, incorporating the APSE Apprentice Awards 2023; further understands that Charlie passed his Final Integrated Competence Assessment (FICA) at 98.55%, scoring 136 points out of 138; understands that Charlie is now a fully qualified tradesperson, having completed his four-year apprenticeship; congratulates Charlie on what it sees as a significant achievement, and wishes him the very best in his future career.

Ensuring Scotland’s Skills System is Fit for the Future
S6M-10922
Submitted by: Daniel Johnson, Edinburgh Southern, Scottish Labour.
Date lodged: 23/10/2023
That the Parliament notes the findings of the independent review of the skills delivery landscape, particularly that skills delivery has lacked clear leadership and direction, and substantial structural change is required to ensure that the skills system is fit for the future; regrets that Modern Apprenticeship starts are lower than in 2015-16 at a time when 70% of businesses are reporting skills shortages; is concerned that the proportion of people in employment who participated in job-related training is lower than it was in 2007; notes that net zero targets will require a step change in workforce skills but that the Scottish Government has only allocated 15% of its Just Transition Fund; considers that it is 21 months on from Audit Scotland’s conclusion that urgent action was needed on skills from the Scottish Government and that it is therefore disappointing that no reforms are yet planned; believes that Scotland urgently needs a vision for a flexible and responsive skills delivery system that is fit for the future, and calls, therefore, on the Scottish Government to set out its response to the review of the skills delivery landscape before the end of 2023 and to bring forward legislation on skills reform, as referenced in its Programme for Government, within the parliamentary year.

Supporting Scotland’s Culture Sector
S6M-10917
Submitted by: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 23/10/2023
That the Parliament values greatly the enormous contribution of the arts and culture sector to Scotland’s national life and economy, noting that the creative industry is estimated to be worth nearly £4.5 billion and 80,000 jobs; recognises what many in the sector have described as a “perfect storm” of crisis in the sector, resulting from years of underfunding as well as the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the cost of living crisis; condemns the Scottish Government’s decision to break its promise to the sector not to cut Creative Scotland’s budget by 10%, and notes the furious reaction in response; notes the commitment from the Cabinet Secretary for the Constitution, External Affairs and Culture that Creative Scotland’s funding will be restored in 2024-25, but recognises with concern that Creative Scotland has stated that up to a third of its regularly funded organisations are at serious risk of insolvency in the short term, and over half are financially weak, which will require redundancies or other cost savings, and therefore considers that there is an urgent need for funding now; further notes the announcement made by the First Minister on 17 October 2023 to more than double arts and culture funding over the next five years, but believes that, in the current context, financial certainty for the sector is crucial; calls, therefore, on the Scottish Government to reverse the 10% budget cut to Creative Scotland with immediate effect; further calls on the Scottish Government to set out full details for its proposed increase in the arts and culture budget, including timescales for funding increases, and believes that it is essential that this is clarified ahead of the publication of a refreshed Scottish Government Culture Strategy.

Purchase of Hoy and Sanday Churches
S6M-10944
Submitted by: Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
Date lodged: 25/10/2023
That the Parliament congratulates Friends of Sanday Kirk on being awarded £83,730 from the Scottish Land Fund to purchase Cross Kirk on Sanday; understands that the group formed in 2022 after the Church of Scotland announced that Cross Kirk would be slated for closure; further understands that after initially winning a 12-month postponement in the closure of the kirk, a charity was officially formed for the purposes of seeking funds to purchase and renovate the building; commends the group’s intention to turn the building into a multi-use community facility and meeting space, providing a range of essential services for the residents of Sanday; understands that £93,802 from the Scottish Land Fund was also secured by Hoy Youth Hub to purchase and convert St Columba’s Church in Longhope, providing a dedicated space for young people on the island; believes that these projects and facilities will be of immense value to their local communities, and pays tribute to the hard work of all those involved in securing the future of what it sees as these important community assets in Sanday and Hoy.

Welcoming the Contribution of Rural Estates to Scotland’s Wellbeing Economy
S6M-11029
Submitted by: Finlay Carson, Galloway and West Dumfries, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 30/10/2023
That the Parliament welcomes the report, The Contribution of Rural Estates to Scotland’s Wellbeing Economy, by Scottish Land and Estates, which was published in February 2023; believes that this report, for which the research was carried out by BiGGAR Economics Ltd and Scottish Land and Estates, is an innovative example of a whole sector measuring its outputs against Scotland’s National Performance Framework’s National Outcomes, rather than just through traditional economic metrics; considers that the report describes and quantifies how rural estates drive local economic development through agriculture, forestry, tourism, sporting, recreation and renewable energy generation, act as stewards of the natural environment, protect and enhance biodiversity, support the transition to net zero, provide homes and create sustainable new communities, provide a gateway to nature, and function as anchors of communities and support community-led projects; further considers that the report also identifies areas in which there is scope for estates to increase their contributions across the National Outcomes, and provides an improvement framework to complement the research; recognises Scotland’s rural estates as, it considers, key delivery partners of the Scottish Government across a wide range of policy areas, including improving outcomes for people, jobs and nature across the country, including in the Galloway and West Dumfries constituency, and commends the sector for what it sees as its commitment to this innovative work.

Events

For further listings, please see our events calendar

Heritage Trust Network – A Future for Your Church: Creating a Church Plan
Date & Time: Friday 3 November; 9:30-11am
Location: Online via Zoom
Heritage Trust Network and Historic Churches Scotland are joining forces to host the next event in this series for any group contemplating the future of their church building. At this event Isobel Milne from The Churches Conservation Trust will explain the key elements of a Church Plan and how to create your own using a helpful template. A copy of CCT’s template will be provided for you to adapt and use at your own church.

Festival of Social Science – Wellbeing wander: Creative Community City Planning with your Senses
Date & Time: Saturday 4 November; 2pm-4pm
Location: Clarice Pears Building School of Health & Wellbeing, Glasgow G12 8TB
A two hour gently paced activity led by Dr Alison McCandlish including a short guided walk and workshop- get some steps in and spend some time using all of your available senses to see, hear and experience Byres Road, exploring and explaining explain urban planning issues which many communities face, with a social science eye. No prior drawing skills needed, all materials provided. Open to professional town planners and related built environment professionals or community activists.

IHBC – Retrofit Workshop with IHBC Scotland branch
Date & Time: Monday 6 November; 10:30am-3.30pm
Location: Glasgow City Heritage Trust, Glasgow
Workshop on retrofit in Glasgow by John Edwards (Edwards Hart – Consultants). Introducing the IHBC Retrofit Toolbox, the value of a holistic approach and of maintenance as well as interventions to meet the standards. Fee £20 includes lunch. Click on to the ‘events’ tab on the webpage to see this event.

Under One Roof – Property Repair and Maintenance Event
Date & Time: Tuesday 7 November; 5:30pm-7:30pm
Location: ESPC Property Information Centre, 107 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 3ES
The aim of this event is to provide tenement owners with the tools required to ascertain building condition, carry out repairs and ensure correct maintenance of their properties. Changes to the law of tenement maintenance are coming – find out what you need to know at the event. Topics covered include property conditions, repair and maintenance processes, funding options, and neighbourhood collaboration.

Scottish Historic Buildings Trust – Cardross Seminary: Fate, Failure or Tragic Myth?
Date & Time: Wednesday 8 November; 6:30pm-8:30pm
Location: Riddles Court, Edinburgh
Dr Diane Watters will summarise the sixty-odd year history of Cardross Seminary as outlined in her book of 2016, and place Cardross within the wider religious, architectural and preservation movements of which it formed an important symbolic part. Its history divides neatly into two: the story of its design and use, and the story of its decline and salvage.

RTPI – Sustainability and resilience through planning – building adaptability to future challenges
Part of the World Town Planning Online Programme
Date & Time: Wednesday 8 November; 8:30am-9:45am
Location: Online
On World Town Planning Day planners and communities all over the world come together to celebrate how good planning improves the lives of people and benefits society at large, creating places where to live, work and play together. You are invited you to join our special online webinar programme as part of our pre National Planning Conference programme.

RTPI – Grampian AGM and Quiz
Date & Time: Thursday 9 November; 5:30pm-9:30pm
Location: Advocates Library, Aberdeen
This in-person AGM will take place in the Advocates Library. The AGM will be followed by the Quiz and an opportunity to catch up with colleagues. Light bites and refreshments will be provided. Please sign up as individuals but teams will be a maximum of four. If you can’t make up a team we can coordinate one.

Society of Antiquaries of Scotland – Changing His Tune: Robert Bruce, Ireland and the Papacy
Date & Time: Thursday 9 November; 6pm
Location: Online
Robert Bruce had been on a mission for over a decade by 1318, intent on forcing a peace treaty out of England acknowledging Scottish independence and his own rights as king. After Bannockburn, ever more extravagant military options were pursued to try to force the issue, a priority that required avoiding direct engagement with Pope John XXII who was determined to stop the violence. The death of Bruce’s heir, his brother Edward, in Ireland in October 1318 changed all that. Join historian Fiona Watson and the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland to hear more about this crucial period in the reign of Scotland’s warrior king.

Institution of Civil Engineers – The Burrell Collection Refurbishment
Date & Time: Thursday 9 November; 6pm-8pm
Location: University of Strathclyde, Lecture Theatre TL455
A presentation by the structural engineer and architect on the Burrell Renaissance project.

The Heritage Alliance – Heritage Debate 2023 Careers at a Crossroads
Date & Time: Wednesday 15 November; 11am-1pm
Location: Online
Now in its 13th year, Heritage Debate brings sector leaders, professionals, volunteers and students together for cross sector insight, connection and to find solutions to key challenges facing the sector. This year’s Heritage Debate is: ‘Careers at a Crossroads: How Can We Future-Proof the Heritage Sector Workforce?’

The Improvement Service and Planning Aid Scotland – Improvement Service for Community Councils – Local Place Plans
Date & Time: Tuesday 21 November; 6pm-7pm
Location: Online
Local Place Plans are a new right enshrined in planning legislation for communities to prepare a plan for their own place. The webinar will provide an overview of Local Place Plans, and how they are different from other types of community-led plan. It will also look at what the key requirements are in terms of preparing a Local Place Plan, and at some examples of Local Place Plans that have already been prepared. There will be plenty of time for discussion so please come along with any questions.

Architecture & Design Scotland – Place Forum: Thinking big, thinking beyond
Date & Time: Wednesday 22 November; 11am-1pm
Location: Online
Join Architecture and Design Scotland for the next Place Forum where they will be looking at whole place design and collaborative approaches. The question they ask is ‘How do we explore and collaborate with place and people to help embrace the ‘scale’ of vision required for the future’ Confirmed speakers include: Brendan Turvey of NatureScot, Lisa MacKenzie and Anais Chanon of ESALA and Alistair Shaw of Falkirk Council.

Scotland’s Towns Conference 2023: Delivering Towns for All
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 9am-5pm
Location: Apex Hotel, Dundee
Join Scotland’s Towns Partnership and around 200 industry stakeholders for this year’s Scotland’s Towns Conference – Delivering towns for all. Scotland aims to deliver places for all – a wellbeing economy – creating equality and opportunity for an economy that ensures our towns, neighbourhoods and communities are thriving, engaging and viable for all.

BEFS/SPAB – Scotland’s Churches in Transition: Planning for the Future
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 9:30am-4pm
Location: The Ramshorn, 98 Ingram Street, Glasgow
SPAB and BEFS are delighted to jointly host this CPD Conference for decision makers across the planning and built environment sector. A huge number of churches are in transition, with some in the process of being assessed and sold on the open market. Changes of use and ownership such as these may often mean the sites will no longer be covered by Ecclesiastical Exemption.

Icon Scotland Group – 2023 AGM
Date & Time: Thursday 30 November; 5:30pm-6:15pm
Location: The Engine Shed, Stirling
Join the Icon Scotland Group committee to discuss everything we’ve been doing in 2023, and everything we have planned for 2024. Tickets are free and you can join us whether you’re an Icon member or considering joining.

Icon Scotland Group – 26th Annual Plenderleith Memorial Lecture
Date & Time: Thursday 30 November; 6:30pm-8:30pm
Location: The Engine Shed, Stirling and Online
Join Icon Scotland for a lecture in memory of Dr Harold Plenderleith, one of the key founders of modern conservation. Our invited speaker is Professor Christina Young, Director of the Kelvin Centre for Conservation and Cultural Heritage Research, University of Glasgow. Christina will reflect on how the Kelvin Centre addresses issues facing the conservation landscape in Scotland and helps promote and support the conservation profession.

Training

Culture & Business Scotland – Going for gold – securing business sponsorships from start to finish
Date & Time: Tuesday 7 November; 9.30am-4pm
Location: Online, on Zoom
This practical course, led by Alice Samtoy, provides comprehensive training to deepen your knowledge and take your corporate fundraising to the next level.

Culture & Business Scotland – Effective copywriting: from blank page to impactful story
Date & Time: Tuesday 14 & Wednesday 15 November; 10am-1pm
Location: Online
Move from a blank page to a compelling case for support in the capable hands of professional copywriter, Allison Traynor. Packed with tips, tools and techniques and delivered in two live classroom online sessions over two days.

Scottish Civic Trust – Inclusive heritage training
Date & Time: Wednesday 29 November; 1pm – 2.15pm
Location: Online
Join the Scottish Civic Trust for a free inclusive heritage training session for local civic, heritage and community groups in Scotland. The session will cover key terms related to inclusion, the benefits of engaging more diverse audiences, mapping possible partners and how to build mutually beneficial partnerships with excluded audiences.

Vacancies 

Scottish Historic Buildings Trust – Director
Salary: Competitive salary commensurate with experience
Status: Full-time
Location: Edinburgh.
Scottish Historic Buildings Trust (SHBT) is a dynamic and innovative charity which plays a unique role in preserving and promoting the nation’s heritage, with over 40 years’ experience delivering complex projects that regenerate neglected historic buildings and give them a sustainable future. SHBT holds a property portfolio of important historic buildings that are available to lease or hire for offices, events and functions. SHBT are seeking a highly motivated and experienced Director to lead this Building Preservation Trust, providing strategic vision, financial management and leadership.

Historic Environment Scotland – Collections Officer
Salary: £23,971 – £26,842
Status: Full-time
Location: Edinburgh and the Lothians.
Historic Environment Scotland are looking for a Collections Officer to join the Collections & Applied Conservation team to manage daily operations at Trinity House Maritime Museum in Leith. You will work with internal and external stakeholders to open the house up to the public and community groups, ensuring a high level of collections care throughout.
Deadline: Monday 6 November 2023

UNESCO – Non-Executive, Culture
Salary: Unremunerated with reasonable expenses reimbursed.
Status: Minimum 20 days per year commitment.
Location: London/Flexible.
The UK National Commission for UNESCO is inviting applications for a pro bono Non-Executive Director (NED) with expertise and experience in the field of Culture (with a focus on World Heritage).
Deadline: Tuesday 14 November 2023

Royal Institute of Architecture Scotland – Head of Outreach
Salary: £38,000 – £42,000
Status: Full-time
Location: Edinburgh, flexible working.
The RIAS seeks a Head of Outreach, to play a pivotal role in driving the success of the RIAS by spearheading the development and implementation of robust public affairs, policy, communications, and awards program strategies.
Deadline: Thursday 16 November 2023

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In this BEFS blog, BEFS Director gives a personal reflection on visiting The Ridge in Dunbar.

Last week BEFS team (or at least some of us) were lucky enough to visit The Ridge in Dunbar. Here, I’m going to give a personal reflection on this long-planned trip.

BEFS have worked with The Ridge Foundations CIC since they became Members in 2020 (you can see our intro to them, here). A lot of our work together has, understandably, been around skills: skills shortages, skills training, and skills policy. Within a policy world many things we deal with can seem quite theoretical. What makes the work meaningful is knowing it has real-world applications (and implications). Visiting The Ridge is seeing so much of what the sector now champions made manifest.

As you wander round – and the word ‘wander’ belies the immense skill at being taken through the journey of an organisation – seeing repurposed commercial premises with temporary uses to support those more vulnerable in the community; gardens (both commercial flowers and quiet reflection); a SPAB award winning completed project; and areas in many and various stages of exciting development, “the windows arrive today!”.  Along this wander you’re bombarded by the layers of place, and materials, and the stories of the people; from tales of past residents sitting by their stove – to beams, reused from boats scuttled in the harbour, to seeing a first apprentice now training a team of his own.

What is done here, is to fulfil a need. People who might not have thrived in traditional educational settings, or had other challenges thrown their way,  need training, support and entry level roles. So that’s what the Ridge Foundations has developed and supports, enabling those local people to work towards increasingly skilled roles on properties within the Conservation Area. It happens that the surrounding heritage sites are ripe to be made purposeful again, to provide the rooted sense of place for the whole community – but the people are the fulcrum. Training and developing traditional skills, to fix traditional places – where people learn, and grow, and gain qualifications seems symbiotic. That apparent symbiosis comes from years of balancing hard won funding, and demonstrating continued project successes.

The connection between the skills, and the place, and the people is tangible at The Ridge, it’s a hub of activity (of all sorts). And, at every stage, it seems every completed project is to be learnt from; training frameworks are made more meaningful for those progressing through them because there’s an understanding that, “it’s not that satisfying to make something useless then take it apart just to demonstrate a skill”.  The pride that comes in making also means that ‘commercial’ is not a dirty word – locals (and those further afield) need their homes fixed, income streams need to be diversified  and generated. Sustainable is not just about re-use – it’s about ensuring a future for The Ridge, ensuring it can continue to meet the needs of those it inspires, as well as enabling further projects to provide space within the community to meet their needs, both social and economic. This sustainability is also what BEFS advocate for across the built environment policy spectrum. When it comes to the existing built environment a fabric-first approach (ensuring a building is wind/water tight and in a good state of repair) should be the first step of all retro-fitting, regardless of what appropriate interventions/technologies are then used to reduce energy consumption and move to zero emissions.

The Ridge sits in Dunbar an area now well connected to Edinburgh by train but a long bus journey from many training centres. Regional delivery for traditional skills is a topic much discussed at policy level, and The Ridge is showing what can be done in practise.

There was a time, not so very long ago, when heritage was spoken of in a silo – with the buildings the pinnacle of what mattered.  The Ridge demonstrates why community matters to heritage and vice versa; why skills and people, and how we learn to care for these places again, is integral to the future. And not because they want to tick boxes, but to meet local need, and deliver meaningful place-based change. Their strap line is, “inspiring transformational change” – I was only there for a few hours, but I’ve no doubt they chose the right words.

BEFS Team thanks all those at the The Ridge for all their work, and for letting us be inspired.  Particular thanks to Kevin McClure, who took the time to tell us so much about the place, the people, and all their skills.

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