HC Deb 21 April 1890 vol 343 cc956-7

I beg to ask the Lord Advocate whether crofting and fishery villages, built under the Scottish Fishery Village Act, come under "The Crofters' Holdings (Scotland) Act, 1886"; whether Shieldaig, in the parish of Apple-cross, Rossshire, has been built under said Fishery Act; on what conditions or leases were houses generally built in such fishery villages, and to whom do or did the beaches in front of such villages belong; where are the plans, maps, charters, or other documents pertaining to such villages (Shieldaig especially) preserved, and how accessible; what restrictions and powers, if any, were put on or given to few holders in such fishery villages, as to killing or taking of deer, game, and salmon, and have such restrict-tions and powers, if any, been subsequently repealed by the passing of Game Salmon Fishery or other Acts; and was property in such fishery villages (built under the Scottish Fishery Village Act) exempted from all or any parish or county taxes?


Presumably the hon. Member refers to the Acts relating to the British Fisheries Society, there being no Statute with the title given in the question. Crofters in properties held by this Society would, I think, come under the Crofters' Act if they were otherwise eligible under that Act. This, however, is a question for the Commission to settle. I am informed that Shieldaig never was one of the settlements of the Society, and that Pulteneytown is now the only village held by the Society, the other settlements having all been given up more than 50 years ago. The Acts above referred to empowered the Society to levy dues, &c. for harbours, but left the question of foreshores untouched. The conditions of building were similar to those in Few Charters, except in the cases of houses in the landward part of any settlement, such houses (as was the case in Pulteneytown), were generally built by the Society, the tenants doing the carting. It is supposed that the plans, &c., were given up to the purchasers of the settlements. Those relating to Pulteneytown may be seen at the office of the Society at Wick. So far as I can ascertain no restrictions were imposed in regard to taking game, and in Pulteneytown no rights have ever been asserted. There is no exemption from taxes in Pulteneytown, and there is no reason to believe that any such exemption existed in the other settlements.