FRIDAY, 18 NOVEMBER 2011Nobody mentioned eff for feudal ....
Imagine if you had a landowner who came in and took your ground. Just took it, never thought to mention it, continued to charge you rent for it, did not compensate you for it, ignored you, prevented you from accessing your land which you pay full rent. Good land. In fact, the best land.
Imagine too that in order to recompense your loss in income through crop yield becoming reduced, you want to diversify in another area but this is also 'out of bounds' and you only discovered this a few days ago, much to your astonishment.
If you were successful with your plans to diversify, you would have to pay the landowner a percentage of your income. You do the work, you make the investment, landowner gets the money *if* you get his permission to diversify in the first place. I may have mentioned this before but lest we forget.
Lest we forget to doff cap.
Now imagine, and I know this is a far stretch of the imagination, but just imagine they did this *because they can*!
Imagine too, that because of an 'agreement' written in the late Nineteenth century, you and the generations who follow you are still bound to this agreement, regardless of social change, human rights or progress.
Cures for disease may have evolved, men may have been to the moon, women may get the vote and equal pay, tolerance and equality begin to surface but somewhere in a little part of the world, there is a time warp .
And here is the best bit.
Imagine the same agreement states that "yearly and free of charge five days work of any kind by one pair of horses and one man by suitable carts to the aforementioned Station (said station was closed during the Beeching cuts but what the heck)...." and you are legally bound to such a demand in 2011 !
Imagine that this is not the rule of some wayward despot in a far away country but closer to home......uncomfortably closer to home.
This is a brief snapshot of the almost daily struggle we face with our landowner or 'laird' in 21st Century Scotland.
The Clearances never did leave, these are Clearances by stealth but this time the land is wanted for other purposes, probably real estate rather than the rearing of sheep.
Same issues, different century.