BEFS Bulletin – Programme for Government 2017-18

Get The Latest Built Environment News, Consultations, Publications And Vacancies.


The Scottish Government has now published its Programme for Scotland in 2017-18. Read BEFS Chair’s comment on the programme from a built environment perspective.

Do you seek to influence or lobby MSPs, Scottish Ministers, Scottish Special Advisers or the Permanent Secretary? If so, from the new year, you will need to register any ‘regulated lobbying’ with the Scottish Parliament’s lobbing register. The Scottish Parliament have now published their draft Parliamentary Guidance document to assist with stakeholder preparations for the implementation of the Lobbying (Scotland) Act 2016. Comments on the guidance, specifically relating to any errors or omissions, should be submitted by 28 September 2017.

As you will be aware, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force on 25 May 2018. GDPR will be the biggest change in data protection law for 20 years. This morning the Government published the new Data Protection Bill. The Bill transposes the GDPR into UK law and also fills in some of the gaps in the GDPR on exemptions etc. You may find the following resources, among others, useful when preparing for the GDPR in your organisation:
•   Information Commissioner’s Office – Overview of the GDPR
•   Information Commissioner’s Office – Preparing for the GDPR in 12 Steps
•   Act Now Training – GDPR resources
•   9 ways your business can prepare for the GDPR
•   Shepherd and Wedderburn – Countdown to GDPR

If you missed our screening of Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle earlier in the year, come along to the Cameo Edinburgh screening at 8.30pm this evening. The film will be followed by a Q&A with director, Paul Sng, Sarah Boyack, Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, and Andy Wightman MSP, chaired by BEFS very own Euan Leitch.


Climate Change Bill
Closes 22 Sep 2017.

Fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes: consultation
Consultation seeking views on possible changes to standards required for fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes.
Opened 8 Sep 2017 and closes 1 Dec 2017.

Building Scotland’s Low Emission Zones
This consultation paper sets out the proposed arrangements and options to deliver a consistent approach to designing, building and managing Low Emission Zones (LEZs) in Scotland.
Opened 6 Sep 2017 and closes 28 Nov 2017.


Housing Statistics for Scotland 2017: Key Trends Summary (SG 12/09/17)

Making Places initiative 2017-2018: prospectus and application form (SG 11/09/17)
Prospectus and application form for the Making Places initiative – the evolution of the Charrettes fund. Applications are open until Friday 13 October 2017.

Flood Risk Management (scotland) Act 2009 Guidance on Duties of a Local Authority to: – Assess a Bodies of Water – Carry Out Clearance and Repair Works (SG 06/09/17)

A Nation With Ambition: The Government’s Programme for Scotland 2017-18 (SG 05/09/17)

Home Energy Efficiency programmes for Scotland: Summary Delivery Report 2015/16 (SG 31/09/17)


Making Scotland the best place to invest (SG 12/09/17)
Mackay goes beyond Barclay to boost business. In a UK first, new properties will not pay Business Rates until they are occupied and their tenant will not pay for the first 12 months thereafter, Cabinet Secretary for Finance Derek Mackay has today announced.

EU Withdrawal Bill (SG 12/09/17)
The Scottish Government cannot recommend the Scottish Parliament give its consent to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill in its current form, the Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe Michael Russell has told MSPs.

More affordable housing approved (SG 12/09/17)
The number of affordable homes approved over the year to the end June 2017 has increased by 30% on the previous year, bringing the total number of approvals over the year to 10,612.

3% increase in housing supply (SG 12/09/17)
Total new housing supply in Scotland increased by 3% in 2016-17, to 18,539 new housing units, or 571 more homes than the previous year.

Designing communities (SG 09/09/17)
People to have say in the design of their area. Communities across Scotland can bid to take part in a new £325,000 scheme to regenerate their neighbourhood, Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart announced today. The Making Places Initiative will help bring communities together to agree improvements for their area based on local need and priorities.

Building and fire safety (SG 08/09/17)
The fifth meeting of a Ministerial Working Group, set up to review building and fire safety following the Grenfell Tower tragedy, has taken place today.

Flexible Workforce Development Fund (SG 07/09/17)
From today, Scotland’s employers can apply for part of a new £10 million fund to partner with colleges to deliver in-work skills training. The Flexible Workforce Development Fund (FWDF) will be available to organisations across the private, public and third sectors who are subject to the UK Government’s Apprenticeship Levy.

Culture conversations (SG 07/09/17)
People across the country are being encouraged to get involved in shaping Scotland’s new culture strategy, with three more public events to take place. Following sessions held in July in Dundee and Inverness, public events are now planned during September and October in Paisley, Dumfries and Galashiels, Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop announced today.

Brexit planning process ‘unacceptable’ (SG 06/09/17)
Minister raises concerns over lack of engagement by UK Government. The process for post-Brexit planning needs to change so that the position of the Scottish Government – particularly in areas that directly affect devolution  – is properly represented according to the Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe.

Landlord registration enforcement (SG 06/09/17)
Guidance on regulating landlords in the private rented sector has issued to all local authorities. The guidance will support local authorities to effectively regulate the landlord registration system, which requires councils to maintain a register of private landlords and ensure that only landlords it judges to be fit and proper are allowed on the register.

Programme for Government (SG 05/09/17)
Seizing the opportunities of the low carbon revolution, investing in future economic growth and improving the lives of all our young people will be central to the Scottish Government’s Programme for the coming year.


St Cyrus public consultation begins (SNH 14/09/17)
Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) want to hear from people with an interest in St Cyrus National Nature Reserve (NNR) to help prepare a new ten-year plan for the reserve.

Get ready for Scottish Lobbying! (SCVO 13/09/17)
A look at who’ll be affected when new Lobbying (Scotland) Act starts. In this blog, I look at exclusions (i.e. where you don’t need to register), outline some possible lobbying scenarios and highlight what’s not covered by the Act.

Data laws to be made fit for digital age (DDCMS 12/09/17)
The Government has today outlined vital protections and flexibilities for the nation’s world-leading research, financial services, journalism and legal services as part of its plans to update data protection legislation for the modern era.

Flexible Workforce Development Fund means a race for funding (SCVO 12/09/17)
One of the prominent themes of the Scottish Government’s recent decisions on employability has been the side-lining of the third sector. The Apprenticeship Levy is no different.

Making Places initiative 2017-2018 (A&DS 11/09/17)
The Scottish Government have launched the 2017 to 2018 Making Places initiative to encourage communities to positively and actively contribute to the development of their local places. Making Places represents a broadening of the Charrette Mainstreaming Programme to support communities at all stages of their thinking.

Programme for Government: A brave new world? (SCVO 07/09/17)
Do the First Minister’s announcements mark a truly radical change in approach and will actions match the warm rhetoric?

Housing system that works for everyone key to tackling housing crisis, say home builders (HFS 05/09/17)
With the First Minister renewing her mission to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping in today’s Programme for Government announcement, the country’s home building industry emphasised the fundamental importance of ensuring that Scotland has a housing system that works for everyone.

Tesco Bags of Help funds 225 projects in Scotland every 2 months. You can apply now for up to £4000 for projects that bring benefits to the community. This includes outdoor or indoor improvements, activities and equipment purchases. Get your application going – more here.


World’s largest heritage photography competition and Scottish Archaeology Month (AS 11/09/17)
Wiki Loves Monuments, a photography competition to capture our heritage, launched at the beginning of September, 2017, and runs throughout the month. Archaeology Scotland is sponsoring the first place prize for the best photo from Scotland- 1 year’s membership – as part of Scottish Archaeology Month.

Paisley Traditional Building Skills event features in Parliamentary Motion (STBF 07/09/17)
The Traditional Building Skills Demonstration in Paisley on 4 & 5 September was featured in a parliamentary motion by Maurice Golden MSP who visited the event.

RTPI Scotland welcomes confirmation of Planning Bill (RTPI Scotland 06/09/17)
RTPI Scotland has welcomed the First Minister’s confirmation in her Programme for Government that the Planing Bill remains a priority.

EU Withdrawal Bill (RTPI 06/09/17)
Commons Briefing #1 from the Royal Town Planning Institute.


Questions marked with a triangle (?) are initiated by the Government in order to facilitate the provision of information to the Parliament.

Question S5W-09723: Jackie Baillie, Dumbarton, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 19/06/2017
To ask the Scottish Government what guidance (a) has been and (b) will be delivered to (i) housing developers and (ii) local authorities to ensure that social housing developments announced as part of its £1.75 billion investment in affordable housing take account of the needs of ethnic minority families, including the provision of housing that is appropriate for (A) larger families and (B) families that often have to rent housing in the private sector but which are on lower incomes.
Answered by Angela Constance (06/07/2017)


S5M-07613 Adam Tomkins: Housing—That the Parliament recognises that the lack of housing supply is one of the biggest challenges that Scotland faces and believes that the planning system needs urgent and radical reform; considers that a new deal on housing is required; believes that a national housing and infrastructure agency should be established and that the First Minister should appoint a cabinet secretary for housing and infrastructure; urges ministers to examine the case for a new generation of new towns and garden villages; recognises that improving existing properties and bringing empty ones back into use should form a core component of housing policy, and highlights the importance of housing for improving health and wellbeing and for meeting climate targets through energy efficiency and sustainable development. Supported by: Graham Simpson, Liam Kerr*, Annie Wells*, Tom Mason* (SP 13/09/17)

*S5M-07613.4 Pauline McNeill: Housing—As an amendment to motion S5M-07613 in the name of Adam Tomkins (Housing), leave out from first “recognises” to end and insert “believes that a safe, warm home should be available to everybody; considers that support for social housing should be a central part of housing policy and that it should be available as a choice of housing tenure; believes in the importance of community involvement in housing; recognises that affordable homes for those on low incomes can be a potential stepping stone out of poverty and that the current lack of such homes in Scotland is pushing people into poverty; believes that delays to universal credit payments are leading to increasing housing arrears and potential homelessness, while flatlining incomes are making it increasingly difficult for people to afford a home; agrees that a long-term national infrastructure project with a focus on social housing is
required to deliver the homes needed across Scotland, in particular in rural areas; recognises that this would also provide the certainty that the construction industry workforce needs; believes that a well-resourced planning system that strikes the right balance between communities and developers will be key to this, and recognises that there should be a continued focus on upgrading Scotland’s current housing stock and that, to truly tackle fuel poverty in the private rented sector, a minimum standard of Energy Performance Certificate of Band C should be introduced by 2025.” (SP 13/09/17)

*S5M-07613.3 Andy Wightman: Housing—As an amendment to motion S5M-07613 in the name of Adam Tomkins (Housing), leave out from first “recognises” to end and insert “believes that the current model of housing delivery has failed, and that a generation of young people face greater uncertainty and inequality as a result; further believes that a bold package of land reform measures is needed to provide sufficient affordable quality and warm homes, and that housing policy should aim to make housing more affordable across all tenures; supports taxing vacant and derelict land to reduce speculative land banking, rent controls that reflect the quality of the property and limit future rent rises, professionalising the private rented sector for the benefit of tenants and divesting public pension funds from fossil fuels and investing them in housing; opposes social security reform that puts people at risk of homelessness, and calls on the Scottish Government to set an interim target for all homes, where technically feasible and appropriate, to achieve an Energy Performance Certificate of Band C by 2025 to tackle fuel poverty and improve
energy efficiency.” (SP 13/09/17)

*S5M-07613.2 Angela Constance: Housing—As an amendment to motion S5M-07613 in the name of Adam Tomkins (Housing), leave out from “the lack” to end and insert “good quality, warm and affordable housing is vital to ensuring a Scotland that is fair for this and future generations; welcomes the 69,000 affordable homes delivered since 2007 and the commitment to deliver 35,000 social rented homes, as part of the Scottish Government’s wider aim to deliver 50,000 affordable homes over the current parliamentary term; acknowledges the longer-term funding of £1.75 billion made available to all councils to support them with their plans for accelerating affordable housing delivery; recognises the steps taken to safeguard social housing for the future by abolishing the right to buy; welcomes the Scottish Government’s commitment to action on planning, land and infrastructure to secure the housing developments that the country needs, including measures to strengthen community engagement; recognises that the Scottish Government’s housing infrastructure fund will help unlock key development sites; welcomes the continued commitment to delivering housing as a key way of promoting inclusive growth, and condemns the welfare changes that have been introduced by the UK Government that have led people to be insecure in their homes, including the introduction of the so-called bedroom tax, removal of financial support for housing for under 21s, and the six-week delay in receiving the first payment of universal credit, which is leading to housing arrears.”Supported by: Kevin Stewart* (SP 13/09/17)

*S5M-07613.1 Alex Cole-Hamilton: Housing—As an amendment to motion S5M-07613 in the name of Adam Tomkins (Housing), leave out from “a national housing” to “infrastructure” and insert “this should have a particular emphasis on building new homes for social rent, with increased targets to re-establish it as a valid long-term option for people; considers that, alongside an increase in housing supply, changes to social security are required to improve options and security, such as returning housing benefit to young people; recognises that the aspiration to build new properties and transform hundreds of thousands of existing properties into sustainable warm homes is dependent on the availability of skilled labour; believes that college cuts and the UK Government’s policies in relation to Brexit and immigration jeopardise the ability find this”. (SP 13/09/17)


Debate on motion S5M-07613, in the name of Adam Tomkins, on housing (SP 13/09/17)

A statement by Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Constitution Derek Mackay on the response to the report of the Barclay review of non-domestic rates (SP 12/09/17)


For the latest information about BEFS Members’ events see our events calendar.

Property Repair & Maintenance Event
When: Monday 25th September 2017 from 5.30-7.30pm.
Where: ESPC, 107 George Street, Edinburgh.
Vital information will be provided to help you:
– Find out the condition of your property
– Find out the process required to repair and maintain your property
– Learn what funding options are available to you
– Talks from professionals who can start you on the right track
– Q&A opportunity at help desks
Why not come along to this free event. If you would like to attend please BOOK YOUR PLACE rsvp to: OR CALL 0131 555 0688.

Arts & Business Scotland Culture & Business Fund Scotland Workshop & Reception
When: Thursday 28 September 2017 from 15:30 to 19:30.
Where: The Rockfield Centre, Stevenson Street, Oban, PA34 5NA.
A free workshop that will give arts and heritage organisations the opportunity to learn about the Culture & Business Fund Scotland. The fund provides £ for £ match funding for arts and heritage organisations who gain sponsorship from first time business sponsors or business sponsors who have not sponsored culture in the last two years. An informal drinks and canapés reception for businesses and cultural organisations. Opportunities for networking and presentations featuring case studies of successful cultural and business partnerships from across Scotland. Guidance and advice on effective and collaborative engagement.

Patrick Geddes Learning Festival
When: Thu, 28 Sep 2017, 09:30 – Fri, 29 Sep 2017, 17:00.
Where: Patrick Geddes Centre, Riddle’s Court, 322 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PG.
Following on from the success of the 2016 PAS conference; “Outlook: Exploring Geddes in the 21st Century” and in light of growing international interest in the work of Sir Patrick Geddes, PAS will host a follow-on conference this September. PAS is excited to say that we are working in partnership with the Patrick Geddes Learning Centre for the two-day conference.

The Heritage Trust Network Conference 2017 – Inspiring Heritage for All
When: Monday, 2nd October to Wednesday, 4th October.
Where: Guildhall, Kingston upon Hull.
This year the Heritage Trust Network’s conference will take place in Hull, City of Culture.
Have a look at the full three day programme and the wealth of inspiring speakers and workshops here.

Edinburgh’s Unbuilt ‘Opera House’, 1960 – 1975
When: Monday 2nd October 2017 at 6.30pm.
Where: St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church, 13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA.
Dr Alistair Fair is Chancellor’s Fellow and Lecturer in Architectural History, at the University of Edinburgh. He is a specialist in post-war architecture in Britain and has recently completed a book on post-war theatre building. This talk examines the infamous proposals of 1960 – 1975 for a major new theatre in central Edinburgh that were a regular fixture in the local press. Alistair looks at what went wrong.

A lecture to celebrate 250 years of the New Town
When: 5th October, from 18:00 – 20:30.
Where: The Glasite Meeting House, 33 Barony Street, Edinburgh EH3 6NX.
This year marks the 250th anniversary of the approval of James Craig’s winning design for the Edinburgh New Town. In this lecture, Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage, will delve into the conditions that led to the creation of the New Town, and the subsequent development of our remarkable city centre. He will also touch on the work of the last 45 years to ensure this legacy remains one of the most spectacular survivals from the Georgian and early Victorian period.

Stirling Skills Demonstration Day
When: 5th and 6th October 2017.
Where: Port Street (between the entrance to the Thistles centre and New Look), Stirling.
The Stirling Traditional Skills Demonstration is being hosted by the Stirling City Heritage Trust in partnership with the Forth Valley Traditional Building Forum. The purpose of the event is to encourage young people to think about a career in traditional building skills, as well as raising general awareness of the skills that are so important in maintaining our historic environment. Come along and try your hand at stone masonry, roof slating, joinery and painting and decorating and discover the skills that are so important to maintaining our built heritage. The event is a free drop in and we look forward to seeing many of you there!

Housekeeping Scotland Convention: A vision for homes, communities & places
When: Sat 7 October 2017, 11:00 – 17:00.
Where: Sir Charles Wilson Building, 1 University Avenue, Glasgow G12 8NN.
Houses are not just walls with price tags. Houses are homes, which are the centre of communities, and it is communities which form places. The Housekeeping Scotland Convention is the start of a long term Common Weal project aiming to build a genuinely transformative agenda for housing in Scotland that re-establishes homes as the beating heart of communities and places, not as financial assets for speculative gains.

British architects, landscape designers and gardeners in Russia
When: Monday 6th November 2017 at 6.30pm.
Where: St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church, 13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA.
Dr Patricia Andrew is an art and garden historian with a career in galleries and museums, and has also served on the Committee of the Garden History Society in Scotland. She specialises in Scottish artists at home and abroad from the 18th Century to the present day. This is a joint lecture with Scotland’s Garden and Landscape Heritage, focusing on the legacy of British (particularly Scottish) architects, garden designers and engineers in Russia.


Publications Officer (SoAoS)
The Society of Antiquaries of Scotland is a charity (Charity No SC 010440) and independent publisher of high-quality peer reviewed books and journals covering the entirety of Scotland’s past with a particular focus on archaeology and history. The Society is seeking an enthusiastic Publications Officer to support our publishing activity. This position will offer excellent and highly varied experience in all aspects of academic publishing, including editorial, design and marketing responsibilities.
Deadline for applications: 5pm on Sunday 17 September 2017. Interviews will be held on 25 September 2017.

World Heritage Site Project Assistant (EWH)
Edinburgh World Heritage are looking to appoint a World Heritage Site Project Assistant to assist with the delivery of a series of projects focusing on the conservation and enhancement of the historic environment within the World Heritage Site, including the “Twelve Closes” project. The main purpose of the position will be to assist the World Heritage Site Project Manager with the administration, fundraising and delivery of World Heritage projects. To apply for this role, please send us your CV, together with a completed application from and covering letter in support of your application by 5PM, Wednesday 20th September 2017.

Project Architect (HES)
The post will be responsible for the co-ordination and delivery of conservation and maintenance projects within the HES Investment Plan at the Properties in the Care of Scottish Ministers. This will include development, project management and delivery of the HES investment plan projects in our conservation, visitor facing facilities, site infrastructure, M&E installations, Climate Change and carbon reduction programmes.
Closes 27 Sep 2017.

National Investment Plan Co-ordinator for Conservation (HES)
The post will be responsible for the co-ordination and delivery of conservation and maintenance projects within the HES Investment Plan at the Properties in the Care of Scottish Ministers. This will include development, project management and delivery of the HES investment plan projects in our conservation, visitor facing facilities, site infrastructure, M&E installations, Climate Change and carbon reduction programmes.
Closes 27 Sep 2017.

PhD: Wrestling With Social Value: An Examination of Methods and Approaches For Heritage Management and Conservation
The University of Stirling is offering a funded PhD Studentship in collaboration with Historic Environment Scotland (HES). The studentship provides costs of Home/EU fees and student maintenance (at AHRC rates) for 3 years of PhD study. International students are welcome to apply, but will be liable for the difference between Home and International fees. The successful candidate will be expected to commence study on 1st January 2018.
Closes: 6th October 2017