By Neale McQuistin

THE Tenant Farming Commissioner has welcomed the news that legislation for relinquishment and assignation provisions from the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016 have now been laid before the Scottish Parliament and will come into force by February 28, 2021.

The legislation has a dual purpose in that it will enable retiring tenants to realise the value of a secure tenancy when relinquished and could stimulate more tenanting opportunities for new entrants to farming.

The Tenant Farming Commissioner (TFC) has a specific statutory role in that he must appoint an independent valuer to calculate the amount payable by the landlord to the tenant for the relinquishment of the tenancy. To meet this requirement, the TFC is to set up a panel of experienced valuers to draw on to calculate the compensation due to the tenant.

Tenants and landlords will be invited to nominate their preferred valuer – and the norm will be for the TFC to appoint that valuer.

However, if the tenant does not notify the TFC of a preferred valuer, the TFC will appoint a valuer from the panel to undertake the valuation.

Tenant Farming Commissioner Bob McIntosh, said: “It is good to see this legislation moving forward and providing opportunity for both retiring tenants and new entrants. The legislation is to come into force early next year so I am inviting suitably experienced valuers to apply to sit on this new panel”.

Market round-up Messrs Craig Wilson Ltd sold 2,078 prime and cast sheep at Newton Stewart yesterday.

The 1,870 prime lambs were a mixed show for quality which was reflected in the average price which eased back to 201p/kg (-10p). Again, heavyweights took the biggest hit with best export lambs still making 214p and above to a top of 235p for a pair of Texels. The leading price per head at £100 was also paid for a pen of Texels.

Cast sheep also proved harder to cash this week – peaking at £102 for Texel cross ewes. Mules sold to £74 and Blackfaces to £67.

C&D Auctions sold 57 cattle, 1,092 prime lambs and 217 cast sheep at its weekly sale of primestock in Dumfries yesterday.

Prime cattle sold to 244p/kg. OTMs peaked at £895 and 123p/kg for beef cows, while dairy cows sold to £870 and 120p/kg for Holsteins.

The trade for prime lambs eased off this week with heavyweights being the hardest to sell.

Top prices were £108 for heavy lambs and 236p/ kg for lighter lambs.

There were 468 lambs in the 39kg to 45kg weight range which averaged 207p.

A smaller show of cast sheep was a similar trade on the week. Heavy ewes sold to £106 for Texels, while Blackfaces peaked at £58.