BEFS Bulletin – Reuse & Repurpose

Get The Latest Built Environment News, Publications, Policy Developments, Vacancies And More.

The Stables at Falkland Estate, The Centre for Stewardship.


A number of new and returning ministers have been confirmed following appointments made by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on 13-14 February. Oliver Dowden CBE was appointed Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). Nigel Huddleston is now Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Sport, Tourism and Heritage, and his portfolio is Sport, Tourism, Heritage, Gambling and the Commonwealth Games. Caroline Dinenage is Minister of State for Digital and Culture with a portfolio of the Creative Industries, Arts and Libraries, Museums and Cultural Property, Festival 2022, Digital and Tech Policy and Online Harms and Security. Find the full list of appointments here.

The Scottish Government’s reshuffle of portfolios has Fiona Hyslop retain the Culture portfolio, now with Economy & Fair Work. Constitution, Europe & External Affairs now sit with Michael Russell’s portfolio and Tourism and Rural Economy with Fergus Ewing.

BEFS responded to the Scottish Government’s consultation on Planning Performance and Fees. The response highlights that the revision of planning fees is an opportunity to embed a new approach to development which reflects the environmental benefits of reusing and re-purposing all Scotland’s existing building stock, because of the embodied energy.

The Property Flood Resilience Delivery Group is seeking your views to influence and inform policy, specifically with regards to Scottish building regulations – Standard 3.3 ‘Flooding and groundwater’. The deadline for completion of this short survey is 17 March 2020.

The Scottish Government has responded to a number of parliamentary questions in the past two weeks, relating to the proposed licensing system for short-term lets, the Passivhaus standard, the Strong Towns Fund and the Scottish Land Fund. See below for details.

Finally, check out the array of built environment related events and CDP opportunities coming up next month in the events and training sections.


Housing to 2040: consultation on outline policy options
Closes on 28 Feb 2020.

The practice of cash retention under construction contracts
Closes on 25 Mar 2020.

Energy Efficient Scotland: Improving energy efficiency in owner occupied homes consultation
Closes 26 March 2020.

Planning for Scotland in 2050: National Planning Framework 4 – Call for Ideas
Call for Ideas runs until 31 March 2020.

Review of the ban on the use of combustible materials in and on the external walls of buildings (England)
Closes on 13 April 2020.

Consultation Responses

Scottish Crown Estate draft strategic management plan: consultation analysis


There’s No Place Like Old Homes: Re-use and Recycle to Reduce Carbon (HE 26/02/20)

Adapting common areas of property: guide (SG 24/02/20)

Deliverability of site allocations in local development plans: research (SG 01/02/20)

Climate Action Plan 2020-25 (HES 20/02/20)

Planning appeals: Submitting documents electronically (SG 20/02/20)

Letter: Future Homes Standard and proposals for tightening Part L in 2020 (CCC 18/02/20)

Social capital in Scotland: research study (SG 14/02/20)

Social capital in Scotland: report (SG 14/02/20)

Affordable Housing Supply Programme: guidance notes (SG 14/02/20)

The Future of Community Energy (CES 13/02/20)

HERITAGE – The Material Cultural Heritage as a Strategic Territorial Development Resource: Mapping Impacts Through a Set of Common European Socio-economic Indicators (ESPON)

Digital Culture 2019 (ACE & Nesta 11/02/20)

Climate Emergency Design Guide (CIAT 27/01/20)

Policy paper – Culture is Digital (DCMS 18/09/19)

News Releases

Buildings must be recycled and reused to help tackle climate change (HE 26/02/20)
To meet the government’s target of being carbon neutral by 2050, we must recycle, reuse and responsibly adapt our existing historic buildings, according to this year’s Heritage Counts report.

Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator launches to tackle industry emissions (dezeen 21/02/20)
Companies from across the architecture, engineering and construction industries have collaborated to create a free digital embodied carbon calculator that they hope will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and counter climate change.

New plan steps up heritage response to climate crisis (HES 20/02/20)
Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has set out its response to the climate crisis as the heritage body published its Climate Action Plan 2020-25.

Capturing Scotland’s changing historic places (HES 20/02/20)
Climate Change Scientist David Harkin explores six stunning images of Scotland’s historic environment and the climate change stories behind them.

RICS urges new chancellor to slash VAT on refurbishment work (AJ 18/02/20)
The RICS has echoed one of the demands of the AJ RetroFirst campaign by urging new chancellor Rishi Sunak to slash VAT on refurbishment work to 5 per cent

Orkney community asked for views on World Heritage Site (HES 18/02/20)
Local residents, businesses and organisations in Orkney are being asked for their views on Orkney’s World Heritage Site as part of a community consultation on its future management.

Digital Planning: Upgrade to now LIVE (TP 18/02/20)
We’re happy to announce that the latest upgrade package for the service is now LIVE. You can find out more about what’s changed here.

Finalists announced today for RTPI Planning Awards 2020 (RTPI 17/02/20)
Finalists include a self-build scheme in Glasgow, a modular ‘innovation village’ in Gateshead and a Cambridgeshire cohousing development planned collaboratively by residents, architects, developers and public authorities.

How to consider the environment in your heritage project (NLHF 17/02/20)
Think long term, assess the positive – and negative – impacts of your actions, and remember: small changes can make a big difference.

New initiative: Digital Skills for Heritage launches today (NLHF 10/02/20)
Today The National Lottery Heritage Fund launches its?Digital Skills for Heritage initiative. Our new Head of Digital Policy, Josie Fraser, tells us what to expect. Heritage organisations can thrive in the digital era, using tech to attract the visitors and support they need.

Coalition of leading building environment professionals launch new Climate Emergency Design Guide
(CIAT 27/01/20)

The new guide provides a blueprint on how the construction industry can react to the climate emergency.

Opinion & Comment

Putting digital to work in your heritage organisation (Kati Price, V&A Museum London 13/02/20)

RetroFirst: The case for circular public-sector procurement (Will Hurst, AJ 12/02/20)

Parliamentary Questions & Answers

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

Question S5W-27187: Alex Cole-Hamilton, Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats, Date Lodged: 29/01/2020
To ask the Scottish Government how it plans to use the money received through the Barnett formula as a result of the UK Government’s Stronger Towns Fund.
Answered by Aileen Campbell (25/02/2020)

Question S5W-27260: Joan McAlpine, South Scotland, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what consideration it has given to providing financial incentives to developers to enable the accelerated construction of new homes to certified Passivhaus standard.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (21/02/2020)

Question S5W-27261: Joan McAlpine, South Scotland, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what its position is on whether accelerating the construction of new houses to certified Passivhaus standard would be a positive response to the climate crisis declared in Scotland.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (21/02/2020)

Question S5W-27262: Joan McAlpine, South Scotland, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what role encouraging the construction of more homes to certified Passivhaus standard could have on lifting residents out of fuel poverty.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (21/02/2020)

Question S5W-27258: Joan McAlpine, South Scotland, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the health benefits to householders resulting from living in a house built to certified Passivhaus standard.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (19/02/2020)

Question S5W-27252: Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government, further to its consultation on a regulatory framework for short-term lets, how many local authorities have requested the introduction of a licensing system.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (18/02/2020)

Question S5W-27253: Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the total cost of a licensing system for short-term lets to (a) owners of short-term lets and (b) local authorities.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (18/02/2020)

Question S5W-27254: Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what estimates it has made of the resource implications for local authorities and related bodies to introduce, administer and monitor a system of licensing for short-term lets.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (18/02/2020)

Question S5W-27255: Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the impact that the introduction of a licensing system for short-term lets will have on the number of such lets in Scotland.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (18/02/2020)

Question S5W-27257: Graham Simpson, Central Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/02/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what assessment it has made of the total cost to local planning authorities of the introduction of short-term let control areas, as set out in Section 17 of the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019.
Answered by Kevin Stewart (17/02/2020)

Question S5W-27034: Iain Gray, East Lothian, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 20/01/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to relaunch the Scottish Land Fund beyond March 2021.
Answered by Roseanna Cunningham (05/02/2020)

Question S5W-27033: Iain Gray, East Lothian, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 20/01/2020
To ask the Scottish Government what level of funds remain in the Scottish Land Fund.
Answered by Roseanna Cunningham (05/02/2020)


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

Tom Parnell – Going Forth: Industrial Heritage beyond the Bridges 
Date & time: Monday 2nd March 2020, 6.30pm
Venue: St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church, 13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA
The Firth of Forth is dominated by a growing collection of celebrated bridges. But along the shoreline are less well-known remnants of an industrial past that were of enormous importance. The lecture will explore railways, limekilns, distilleries and power stations: some gone, some surviving, but all now out of use. Tom Parnell is an architectural historian, and a Senior Casework Officer for HES.

Connecting Tools and Materials in the Dutch Neolithic
Edinburgh date, time & venue: March 9 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Auditorium, National Museum Scotland (Use Lothian Street entrance).
Aberdeen date, time & venue: March 10 @ 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm. Meston Building Lecture Theatre One, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB24 3UE.
Lecture by Professor Annelou van Gijn, University of Leiden, in partnership with the Prehistoric Society. Archaeological artefacts like flint are frequently studied in isolation and not as part of a toolkit, let alone as part of a technological system. This lecture will show how a combination of microwear (use wear) analysis and experimental archaeology can shed light on the technological and functional relationships between different find categories.

Developing skills, knowledge and connections in community-based heritage
Date & time: Tue, March 10, 2020; 12:30 PM – 4:30 PM.
Venue: The Wick Heritage Museum, 20 Bank Row, Wick KW1 5EY.
Join us for an informative workshop about developing skills, knowledge and connections in community-based Scottish heritage projects as we review and reflect on Year One of our ‘My Place Mentoring’ programme.

Property repair and maintenance event
Date & time: 10th March 2020 at 17:30pm-19:30pm.
Venue: ESPC Property Information Centre 107 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 3ES.
Come along to our free property maintenance event and find out how you can maintain the building you are living in. We’ve teamed up with various architects and ESPC Lettings to provide you with the tools required to assess the building’s condition and demonstrate how to carry out repairs.

On the Trail of Patrick Geddes – Book Launch
Date & time: Thursday 12th March, 2020 from 6.00pm – 7.30pm.
Venue: Patrick Geddes Centre at Riddle’s Court, 322 Lawnmarket, EH1 2PG
Join author Walter Stephen and Luath Press for the launch of the latest volume in the ‘On the Trail of..’ series. Patrick Geddes was famous in his time for the work he undertook to improve the slum enclaves of Edinburgh’s Old Town. His method of conservative surgery meant that several historic properties in the area were retained. Walter will lead a short tour of these areas immediately before the book talk/signing. Free event and refreshments will be available.

Going Digital: Tools and ideas for a successful project
Date & time: Tue, 17 March 2020; 09:30 – 15:00.
Venue: Maryhill Burgh Halls, 24 Gairbraid Avenue, Glasgow G20 8YE.
Join us for an HTN Scotland Members’ Meeting to learn how boost your project using online platforms and digital technologies. Our theme for the event will be ‘Going Digital’ ideas and examples of how you can use online tools and digital visualisations, to promote and enhance your project. As with all our events, this will be a great opportunity to share updates on your own project, troubleshoot challenges and connect with new people who may be able to help.

Icon Conservation Conference Highlights
Date & time: 20th of March 2020; 9.20am – 4.45pm
Venue: City Art Gallery, 2 Market Street, Edinburgh EH1 1DE.
This one-day conference is organised by Icon Scotland Group and features 12 talks that presented at the Icon 19 triennial conference in Belfast last year. There will be plenty of time for questions and discussion, plus opportunities for networking and socialising.

Why Records Management Matters: Truth, Accountability, Impact
Date: 24th March 2020.
Venue: Bonar Hall, University of Dundee.
For everyone with an interest in truth, justice, accountability, authenticity, good governance and business efficiency. The programme can be found here.

IHBC Member Application Training Event (MATE). By IHBC Scotland Branch
Date & time: Friday 27 March 2020. 10.00 – 15.00.
Venue: Glasgow City Heritage Trust, 54 Bell Street, Glasgow, G1 1LQ
MATE seminars offer talks and exercises to break down the IHBC Associate and Full membership application process, exploring the IHBC’s Areas of Competence and Conservation Cycle model, while also answering any queries. These events are a great way for prospective applicants to find out how to understand their skills, knowledge and experience in the context of IHBC membership criteria and accreditation.

Chris Stewart – Collective Architecture
Date & time: Monday 6th April 2020 at 6.30pm.
Venue: St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church, 13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA
Chris Stewart is an Architect-Director of the award-winning architectural practice Collective Architecture and a director of the Scottish Ecological Design Association (SEDA).  Collective Architecture, which has offices in Glasgow and Edinburgh, has been owned by its employees for the last twelve years. Chris Stewart will tell us about their projects and approach to sustainable design and client and user involvement.

The Heritage Dilemma – Making and Breaking World Cities
Date & time: Thursday 16 April 2020 at 6pm.
Venue: St Andrew’s and St George’s West, 13 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PA.
We are delighted that Loyd Grossman, internationally renowned heritage writer and broadcaster, will be delivering this year’s World Heritage Day lecture. Loyd will discuss the heritage dilemma faced by Edinburgh, where commercial and cultural businesses compete to flourish in a heritage rich environment, with little, if any, contribution to the ever-increasing cost of supporting it. Join us as we take a closer look at Edinburgh’s own heritage dilemma.


New Voices: Fresh Perspectives
Arts & Business Scotland is working in partnership with the William Grant Foundation to deliver New Voices: Fresh Perspectives; a recruitment programme to place young people on arts & heritage boards. Through an open recruitment process, we have recruited 35 arts and heritage organisations who have signed up to take part in the programme. We are now looking to recruit young people (aged 18-30) in early stages of their careers and from a wide range of sectors, to undergo a training programme with a view to matching them with those organisations’ Boards. This opportunity is relevant to you if you have:
•    Young colleagues in your business or organisation who would benefit from taking part in this programme
•    Access to networks or contacts of young people for whom this programme might be relevant

RICS CPD day Dunblane
Date: 12 March 2020.
Venue: DoubleTree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro, Perth Rd, Dunblane, FK15 0HG
A RICS regional conference for Scotland. Hear the latest guidance, technical updates and best practice across the built environment, land and property sectors. Covering today’s ever-changing market trends, legislation and technical guidance, CPD day Dunblane focuses on the specific knowledge and practical skills you will need over the next 12 months.

Traditional Roof Leadwork – Surveying and Maintenance Techniques
Date & time: Tuesday 17th March 2020; 12:30-1:30pm.
Venue: GCHT offices, 54 Bell Street, Glasgow.
Lead is a material which is used in a number of capacities on traditional buildings such as detailing and flashing around chimneys and roof ridges, as well as roof covering for both pitched and flat roofs. While lead can be melted, cast, jointed and decorated, it requires being properly worked and maintained by skilled professionals in order to ensure long lasting and safe results. Delivered by Alasdair White from Murdoch Award winning firm John Fulton, this CPD will discuss the proper way to survey lead on traditional roofs, and how to recognise maintenance and repair needs.

Conservation Stonework and Selecting the Right Stone
Date & time: Tuesday 21st April 2020; 12:30-1:30pm.
Venue: GCHT offices, 54 Bell Street, Glasgow
Traditional stone buildings are an extremely characteristic and beautiful feature of Glasgow. When used correctly stone is a sound, stable building material as countless buildings across Glasgow will testify. However, the number of fully qualified stone masons and experts in Scotland is limited and caution must be exercised when planning repairs and replacements to stone buildings to limit damage and further decay. In this CPD, Graeme Haddon and Marcus Paine of Hutton Stone will discuss best practice in conservation stonework and selecting the correct stone.

RICS CPD day Glasgow
Date & time: 20 May 2020; 08:30 AM – 05:10 PM
Venue: Glasgow Marriott Hotel, 500 Argyle St, Glasgow, G3 8RR
6 hours formal CPD
Hear the latest updates and technical guidance across built environment, land and property. Our highlighted sessions include:
•    Fire safety engineering: Scotland strengthens standards
•    Repair and maintenance of historical and listed buildings
•    Modern methods of construction: Examining the growing trend


Policy Officer
The Policy Officer will lead on RTPI Scotland’s approaches to policy development, though leadership and public affairs through engaging with Ministers, Scottish Government Officials, MSPs and Parliament through providing briefing, responding to policy consultations and developing proactive positions and evidence.
Closing date:  10th March 2020.

Practice Development Officer
The Practice Development Officer at RTPI Scotland will lead on developing approaches to identifying, sharing and supporting our membership to learn from good practice and to increase the supply of planners to the workforce.
Closing date:  10th March 2020.