We support the idea of community ownership of assets as a way of helping to sustain communities and giving them a greater say in their future. The matter is complex, and owning assets must be considered carefully to determine whether it represents the best way of delivering positive change for all communities. It is for each part of government to assess properly all the options when looking to dispose of assets.
The Government is aware of considerable community interest in a community buy-out in Seilebost, Scarista and Luskentyre in South Harris. Is the Government willing to meet representatives of those communities, which are keen to bring to South Harris—if possible—the many benefits that other areas have enjoyed following community buy-outs?
Officials and ministers are certainly willing to meet the community groups concerned. The prospects of areas that have secured ownership of their land have been radically transformed and such communities have new opportunities. The Government would support such an approach and would be happy to facilitate further discussions.