The recent Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) AGM saw a change of Company Secretary after a decade of dedicated service from John Bannister MBE.
“John has been doing a sterling job as our company secretary” said Russell Smith, Chair of the Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF), “and it is very sad for us, but understandable, that he wishes to retire from official duties and concentrate on his croft business. It is a very responsible governance role and takes a great deal of attention to detail. He was also secretary of the Skye and Lochalsh branch of SCF, and a great passion of John’s was practical, accessible training in crofting skills. He set up the SCF training programme 20 years ago and was closely involved in the programme and the training panel until recently.
“We expressed our thanks at our board and council meeting, awarding John an honorary life membership of the SCF and presenting him with the traditional shepherd’s cromach, a symbol of his stewardship role.”
Mr Smith continued, “We also gave a warm welcome to his successor, Fiona Mandeville, whose role was ratified at the AGM. Fiona is very well-known in crofting, having worked as a staff member, a board member and the Chair of the SCF. Her willingness to continue to serve the SCF is very much appreciated.”
The well-attended AGM, held in Inverness last Friday, was initiated with a talk by Jim Hume, Convener of the National Rural Mental Health Forum. “This is a very important subject,” Mr Smith continued, “and the talk by Jim was well received, with a lively discussion following.
Mr Smith added, “The AGM received the company accounts, showing, we are happy to say, that the SCF is solvent and has a secure financial reserve. Retaining members and recruiting new members is always on top of the agenda. The SCF is the only organisation solely dedicated to campaigning for crofters and we have a great deal to do in the following year working for our membership. We call on all crofters to join the collective voice for crofting.”