Who are we?
Save Self Catering represents the community of decent, hard working owners, agents, guests, housekeepers and other trades involved professionally in self catering in Scotland. We make a crucial contribution to the local and wider economy. And yet our livelihoods are currently under threat.
On the 1st of October 2022 Short Term Let Licensing was introduced across Scotland by the Scottish Government. We understand the purpose of that legislation was originally to ensure that holiday properties across Scotland meet health and safety standards.
We support that.
We were assured by Government that reasonable operators would gain a licence. However, on 29th September 2022, the Regulatory Committee of the City of Edinburgh Council passed the city's own licensing scheme, and it goes far beyond the spirit of the Scottish Government's legislation. In its current form, together with planning regulations, there is no sign that reasonable operators will gain a licence.
In Edinburgh there is a Judicial Review against Edinburgh Council’s Short Term Lets Licensing Scheme. The hearing is in the Court of Session on 11th and 12th May 2023. The Crowd Justice fundraiser has become the biggest in Scottish legal history. £300,000 has been raised to fund the action. The judgement will be announced in the summer on 2023 and we believe it will have impact throughout Scotland.
Like so much recent Scottish legislation aimed at the tourism sector, the legislation for short term lets is riddled with issues and unintended consequences. The timing of the Judicial Review means that it is not possible for the implementation of the scheme to go ahead on 1st October 2023. The Scottish Government needs to use an SSI to delay the legislation for at least a year and they should use that year to get the legislation right. The incredibly low numbers of applications across Scotland and complete refusals of planning applications in Edinburgh is enough evidence that there needs to be a significant rethink.
So, here are our stories, the real people involved in Scotland's self-catering industry.