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BEFS Chair, Dr Graham Purves, blogs on how a twenty first century civic vision could be built upon Patrick Geddes’ principle of cultural evolution. Could it form the basis for the Scottish Government’s fundamental review of the planning system?
We are delighted to welcome Icon Scotland and University Campus Sussex as the latest full Members of BEFS and look forward to their expert input in our work.
Edinburgh’s World Heritage Status is the subject of recent media coverage and it’s therefore timely that Historic Scotland are consulting on Managing Change in the Historic Environment Guidance Note: World Heritage Sites which we would encourage you to respond to.
Don’t forget Aberdeenshire, Dundee, Falkirk, Glasgow, Highlands: Caithness, Scottish Borders & West Fife are participating in Doors Open Day this weekend. If you regularly do the city events why not take the time to visit those out of town; less crowded and equally fascinating.
BEFS wishes all the nominees for the Scottish Heritage Angel Awards all the very best on 28th September.


Managing Change in the Historic Environment - World Heritage Sites (HS 14/09/15)
We are currently updating and extending our ‘Managing Change Guidance Note’ series, and in order to ensure we meet stakeholder expectations we have launched a public consultation on our latest Note – World Heritage Sites. The closing date for responses is 06 November 2015.

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New circular launched for Scotland’s historic environment sector (HS 01/09/15)
Frontline planners across Scotland will see the final details of how new historic environment legislation will affect them as of October 1st via the new Historic Environment Circular.

Making things last Consultation on the Circular Economy in Scotland (SG 20/08/15)
In a world of finite resources, where global population and consumption growth are driving increased volatility and vulnerability in the supply of raw materials, the circular economy offers a new and exciting perspective. Report and support information.

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Scottish Government News Release

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News Release

New national heritage body for Scotland granted charitable status (HS 11/09/15)
The new national heritage body for Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has received charitable status from the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR). The move marks another important milestone in the establishment of the new  organisation, which will legally be known as Historic Environment Scotland (HES) and takes up full operational powers on October 1st, following the merging of Historic Scotland and The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS) into a new public body.

European Parliament stands up for cultural heritage (EN 08/09/15)
Today is an important day for cultural heritage in Europe as the Members of the European Parliament have recognised the vital role of heritage in Europe and the opportunities it represents for our economy and our development by adopting with a large majority (613 votes in favour, 70 against and 19 abstentions) a Resolution calling for the implementation of an integrated approach towards cultural heritage for Europe.

New Archaeology Strategy for Scotland launched (HS 02/09/15)
A brand new 10 year Archaeology Strategy for Scotland was launched at Europe’s biggest archaeology conference in Glasgow today (2nd September).  Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy has been developed by the Scottish Strategic Archaeology Committee, coordinated by Historic Scotland, with input from over 200 people from across the archaeology sector in Scotland and beyond. It sets out a shared national vision that Scotland’s archaeology should benefit everyone in society.

New policy strengthens the hand of councils to tackle unauthorised development and ensures all communities are treated equally. (dclg 31/08/15)
Special planning rules designed to support England’s travelling community will only apply to those who lead a genuine traveling lifestyle, under changes that came into force from today (31 August 2015).

Doors Open Across Scotland (HS 27/08/15)
As part of this year’s Doors Open Days celebrations, Historic Scotland and The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS) are teaming up with partners across the country to open the doors of places usually closed to the public

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Recent Parliamentary Questions

S4W-27404 Liam McArthur: To ask the Scottish Government how the local authority joint working agreements will be updated when the new body, Historic Environment Scotland, starts on 1 October 2015. (SG 10/09/15)

S4W-27405 Liam McArthur: To ask the Scottish Government how planning authorities’ conservation capacity is monitored. (SG 10/09/15)

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Recent Parliamentary Answers

Q             Bruce Crawford: To ask the Scottish Government what further consultation is planned with regard to the Land Reform (Scotland) Bill. (S4O-04539) (SG 31/08/15)
            Aileen McLeod , The Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform :  The Scottish Government welcomes all voices to the debate on land reform. The Scottish Government’s Land Reform (Scotland) Bill, which represents an important next step in our wider programme of land reform, was introduced to this Parliament on 22 June. The Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment Committee’s call for written evidence closed on 14 August and the majority of responses are now available on the Parliament’s website. This week, the committee started to take oral evidence on the bill.
We have a great opportunity to ensure that all views and ideas on the bill’s proposals are explored further as the bill goes through the Parliament. Scottish ministers look forward to continuing to work closely with the committee, members, stakeholder organisations and people across Scotland on the future of land reform in Scotland.
Bruce Crawford:  I would be grateful if the minister would meet me to discuss some specific suggestions that I have with regard to the agricultural holdings aspects of the bill, in particular the potential that exists for putting the code of conduct for land agents on a statutory footing, for enabling tenant farmers to better secure the full value of their farm when they surrender a lease, for levels of compensation to be agreed before a farmer agrees in principle to quit and for enabling tenant farmers to more fully benefit from any diversification activity that they undertake.
Aileen McLeod:  The Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and Environment and I will be happy to meet Mr Crawford to discuss the agricultural holdings provisions in the bill. We will also consult stakeholders on the detail of the regulations that are to be developed in connection with the bill’s provisions and any other issues that it would be helpful to explore with industry experts. Some of that work has already begun—for example, the work in relation to defining the approach to productive capacity to ensure that we achieve the best results for the sector.

          Patricia Ferguson: To ask the Scottish Government what process communities should follow to apply for funding from the Town Centre Communities Capital Fund. (S4O-04534) (SG 31/08/15)
A             Alex Neil, The Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Communities and Pensioners’ Rights : Communities can access details and full guidance about the town centre communities capital fund on the Scottish Government website. The fund is open to community organisations to support capital projects in town centres across Scotland. The deadline for applications is 29 September 2015.
Patricia Ferguson: The cabinet secretary will be aware of my interest in town centre regeneration and my support for the Scottish Government’s previous scheme. Although the funding for the new scheme is welcome, I worry that the amount of money that is available will be oversubscribed, as was the case with the previous scheme. Will the cabinet secretary give some more information about the criteria that will be used to judge applications and to make awards of money?
Alex Neil: The £1.7 million fund is not the only one that is available for town centre regeneration. As you may remember, Presiding Officer, in the past month we announced a £4 million fund that has been tailored specifically to bring disused properties in our town centres into use as housing. The main issue regarding the criteria is that the money that is applied for must be used for capital spend and must be committed by the end of March 2016. It does not necessarily have to be spent by then, but under Treasury rules it must be committed by then. Patricia Ferguson will be able to access the more detailed criteria on the website. I do not have time to go through them here.
Cameron Buchanan :  Will the town centre communities capital fund encourage transport-based projects that include town centres?
Alex Neil:  If an appropriate application is made, in principle there is no reason why a transport project could not be supported, provided the money is for capital expenditure and is clearly part and parcel of a town centre regeneration plan.

Q         Margaret McCulloch: To ask the Scottish Government how it supports town centre regeneration in Central Scotland. (S4O-04533) (SG 31/08/15)
            Alex Neil , The Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Communities and Pensioners’ Rights : Scotland’s town centre first principle, which is agreed with the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, together with the measures that are set out in the town centre action plan, set the conditions and underpin activity that is designed to tackle the key issues in town centres across Scotland. Local authorities remain responsible for local regeneration and local economic development. They are best placed to respond to local circumstances, working with their communities to develop the right vision for their town centres, in partnership with the wider public, and with the private and community sectors. Furthermore, in 2015-16, we will provide £1.7 million funding directly to local community organisations through the town centre communities capital fund.
 Margaret McCulloch: New-start rates relief is an important part of the town centre action plan, and is designed to help businesses into vacant new-build properties. Information that I had to obtain through freedom of information requests shows that only six of Scotland’s 32 councils have granted new-start applications in the first two years of the scheme. What is the Government’s view about the level of successful applications, and does it share my concern that new-start rates relief is not supporting regeneration in the way that it should?
Alex Neil: Everything should be done to encourage new-start businesses as part of the regeneration strategy in all our town centers. In particular, I would like to point out the work that has been done by the Carnegie Trust, which has, in a number of towns the length and breadth of the United Kingdom, been working with entrepreneurs and young people who are setting up new businesses, and it has deliberately located those new businesses in vacant premises in town centres. The Carnegie Trust reports a success rate of 80 per cent in survival and expansion of those businesses. That is a very good example of how we can make new businesses—and, in particular, the dynamism of young entrepreneurs—part and parcel of the overall solution for developing our town centres and making them fit for the 21st century.

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Other Parliamentary Activity

    10 October – 25 October 2015
    19 December 2015 ­– 4 January 2016
(All dates are inclusive)

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The work of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture at Humayun’s Tomb & the Nizamuddin urban quarter in Delhi, and recent work at Hyderabad.
4.30pm Friday 18th September, 2015
McWilliam Room, Glasite Meeting House,33 Barony Street, Edinburgh EH3 6NX
A talk by Ratish Nanda from the Aga Khan Trust about recent conservation work in India. Donations welcome. Refreshments will be served afterwards.
RSVP, to help with numbers please email attendance

Benefits of the Scottish Traditional Buildings Forums
Wednesday 23rd September 12pm at 54 Bell Street, Glasgow
 John McKinney represents the National Federation of Roofing Contractors and Stone Federation Great Britain in Scotland. John will discuss his work with the Scottish Traditional Buildings Forum and highlight how professionals within the building trade can best make use of the Forum. 
All CPD sessions will be held at 54 Bell Street in the Merchant City from 12pm -1pm with lunch. £10 per person, per session. A CPD Certificate is available on request.
To book please email or call 0141 552 1331. Please note, booking is essential.

APRS Open day: travel by train to the Borders
Saturday 3rd October 2015
Presentations by: Hugh Wark, Network Rail, Project Director, Borders Railway Samantha Smith, Economic Development Manager for Borders Council John Mayhew, APRS Director. Tickets £10, please email for further details and to book.

CPG MEETING - A Manifesto for the Built Environment
Tuesday 06th October 2015,Scottish Parliament  5.30 to 7.30pm
 We have invited a range of organisations who represent the Built Environment to come and tell us about their Manifestos. Presentations will be Pecha Kucha format of max 5 min presentation and 20 PowerPoint slides.
If you are able to attend please let us know as soon as possible and in any event no later than Friday 02 October 2015.
Confirming to us that you wish to attend is sufficient; we will not be providing any further confirmation of the event. Email Eugene Mullan

SCT Annual Conference - Housing in Scotland: Learning from the Past, Building for the Future
Tuesday 24th November 2015, Linlithgow Burgh Halls
The Scottish Civic Trust Annual Conference 2015 will tackle one of the most important issues facing society today - housing our population.   How can we provide quality, well-built, sustainable and affordable homes without destroying what remains of the greenbelt or adversely impacting on communities already under pressure from over-development.
Booking for the conference will be open soon. In the meantime, please email Gaby Laing to express your interest in attending.

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Structural Repair of Historic Buildings Seminar
9 October 2015, Charlestown Workshops, Fife
The aim of this seminar is to provide professionals with a sound understanding of the philosophy of conservation and a better understanding of the relationship between structural engineering and conservation, of safety issues and of the aesthetics of conservation based structural repairs.
To book a place on this seminar, please click here or call us on 01383 872722.

Subsidised building conservation training 2015-16
Historic Scotland is offering a series of subsidised demonstration workshops and building conservation seminars over the winter of 2015-16. Topics range from the repair of earth structures, roof leadwork and chimney heads to energy efficiency measures for old buildings. Please see the attached programme for further details.

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Job Vacancies

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Other updates

REDIAPRO project meeting in Vilnius
On 13-16th May 2015, Krzysztof Chuchra (International Programme Project Manager) and Fiona Rankin (World Heritage Site Project Manager) from EWH attended the REDIAPRO partnership meeting in Vilnius hosted by our colleagues at the Fine Crafts Association Vilnius - Agne Zilinskaite and Indre Rutkauskaite. The EWH team was joined by Paul McAuley from the City of Edinburgh Council’s Museum Collections Centre. Report

Death and identity in Scotland from the medieval to the modern: beliefs, attitudes and practices
Friday 29 January to Sunday 31 January 2016, New College, University of Edinburgh
This is the third in a series of conferences on Scottish death studies. Papers are particularly welcome on: • The Effect of the Reformation upon Scottish Death practices & beliefs • Death in the Scottish Diaspora • Folklore, customs & rituals• Death, grief and mourning • Death, poverty, age, gender & status • Architecture, landscape & monuments • Death in literature and the visual arts • Legal & medical aspects of death • Theology, liturgy & funeral ministry. Plenary speakers• Professor Christine Borland, Artist, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art • Emeritus Professor of Scottish and Victorian Literature Ian Campbell, University of Edinburgh • Professor Douglas Davies, Department of Theology and Religion, the University of Durham.
Send abstracts of 200 words maximum sent by 16 October 2015 to Susan Buckham

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Information in the Bulletin is extracted from a number of websites; including the Scottish Government (SG); the Scottish Parliament (SP); Architecture and Design Scotland (A+DS); Historic Scotland (HS); Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH); Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO); English Heritage (EH); Design council (DC); Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG); Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS); Department of Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA); National Assembly for Wales (NAW); Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS); Scottish Building Standards Agency (SBSA); Europa Nostra (EN); Historic England (HE). For further information, links are provided to the relevant documents. 

If you have any questions or comments on the above, or would like to submit information to be included, please get in touch with Anne Wilkinson or tel: BEFS Office on 0131 220 6241. We hope that you find the Bulletin useful, however if you wish to be removed from the circulation list, please get in touch.
Copyright © 2015 Built Environment Forum Scotland, All rights reserved.

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