You will find reported decisions of the Scottish Land Court in one of four sets of reports set out below. Modern reports are in the Scottish Land Court’s own series, and you can obtain copies of decisions from the Court. Some are reported in the Scots Law Times. The reporting of older decisions is a little more complicated.
Scottish Land Court Reports 1913–1963
Decisions of the Land Court were published as a supplement to the Scottish Law Review and Reports of Sheriff Court Cases and the published decisions in each year were bound as the Scottish Land Court Reports. The reports date from 1913 to 1963. To refer to a particular decision it is normally sufficient to quote the year and the page number, abbreviating Scottish Land Court Reports to SLCR, thus: Balfour v Couper 1963 SLCR 13. However, since 1913 variations have been used. Scott in the Law of Smallholdings (1933) refers to cases simply by their volume number, for example, Hart v Campbell 10 SLCR 13 = 1922 SLCR 13, whilst MacCuish and Flyn in Crofting Law (1990) refer to cases with their date in brackets and the volume number, thus: Falconer v Murray (1913) 1 SLCR 53.
Scottish Land Court Reports 1982 to date
Since 1982 the Land Court has produced its own volumes of reported decisions each year and these are referred to simply by the year and the page number, thus: Luss Estates Co v Colquhoun 1982 SLCR 1.
You will find the headnotes for these reported cases in the Digest of Cases.
Scots Law Times 1964 to date
From 1964 decisions of the Court have also been reported in the Scots Law Times in a section dealing with Land Court cases. The cases are reported as, for example, Macdonald v Greig 1964 SLT (Land Ct) 5.
Appendices to the Scottish Land Court Reports 1912–1981
In terms of section 18 of the 1886 Act, the original Crofters Commission was obliged to make a report to the Secretary of State for Scotland as to its proceedings, and every report was to be presented to Parliament. That particular section was applied to the Scottish Land Court in terms of section 28 of the 1911 Act and accordingly each year the Court is still required to present a report as to its proceedings to Parliament. From 1912–1981, the Court published appendices to the Annual Reports in which it detailed in table form certain categories of case, for example, fair rents fixed for crofts or compensation awarded for permanent improvements but in addition various decisions of the Court were reported in these appendices. Cases referred to in these appendices are normally cited as, for example, Bell v Forestry Commission 1980 SLCR App 116.
Unreported recent decisions
Since the last edition of the Scottish Land Court Reports the Court has issued certain decisions dealing with legal matters, and in due course these will be included in the next edition of the Scottish Land Court Reports.
The Court has in store all the previous applications made to the Court, and the applications to the original Crofters Commission from 1886 to 1911. The Court maintains an index of these decisions based on the name of the agricultural holding or the name of the croft or crofting township. An examination of the records will show whether the Court or the original Crofters Commission has ever considered an application relating to a particular holding or croft. These earlier applications can be a valuable source of information; for example, in determining the boundaries of a croft.
The administrative staff of the Court are regularly asked to check these records for old applications relating to a particular place, and for this service we charge a search fee set out under “(3) Miscellaneous” in the table of fees. Should any photocopies of old applications be required an additional charge is made for the photocopies, also set out under “(3) Miscellaneous” in the table of fees.
If you wish to enquire about previous applications for a particular holding, please complete the enquiry form.