Neale Hanvey of Alba, Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, posed a question to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) regarding the department’s financial commitments for leasing St Kilda:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how much his Department has paid the National Trust for Scotland to lease St Kilda for the Deep Sea Range (a) in total and (b) in each year for which lease payments have been made.”

James Cartlidge, the Minister of State at the MOD, responded with specifics about the lease and the payments made:

“The Ministry of Defence (MOD) does not lease a Deep Sea Range at St Kilda. However, parts of St Kilda are leased by the MOD from National Trust Scotland (NTS).

The current 25-year lease between the MOD and NTS began in 2003 at a fixed rent of £100,000 per annum plus VAT. The total rent paid by MOD to NTS for the period 2003 to 2023 is £2.52 million.

From 2008, the MOD has sub-leased space at St Kilda to the Northern Lighthouse Board at an annual rent payable to the MOD of £5,400. NTS are entitled to a share of this rent; the MOD pays NTS £1,485 plus VAT per annum under this agreement. The total amount paid to NTS from 2008 to 2023 is £28,512.”

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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farouk
farouk
2 months ago

£2.5 million for 21 years, bargain

Coll
Coll
2 months ago

That’s still a bargain. Also, with a view like that, the National Trust can turn it into an observation centre if the site closes.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
2 months ago
Reply to  Coll

NTS Scotland strictly control access due to the unique Flora and Fauna so nope no landing without prior arrangement and very strict controls. It’s actually on the same UNESCO list as only 3 other places on Earth.Mt Athos, Machu Pecchu and Drakensberg
The MOD folks manning the site must be pretty hardy, it’s 1200 ft up with zero shelter and according to the NTS it is completely cut off for 75 days a year due to the Weather. Which is the only year round presence is MOD. not a good place to get poorly ☹️
Respect !

Coll
Coll
2 months ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Interesting.

Mickey
Mickey
2 months ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Could you imagine the life of the people who lived on those islands for hundreds of years. I read the last inhabitant of that island died just 8 years ago.

Mickey
Mickey
1 month ago
Reply to  Mickey

I have seen the pics.

Beautiful real estate. The islanders from there are like the ones who lived on the Blasket and Inishkea islands off the coast of Ireland. These islands are not as a remote as St. Kilda but you could not get to these islands certain times of the day, month etc. They were evacuated in the 1930s.

The villages on these islands look the same as on St Kilda.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Civilian catering used to go there. Helicopter ride in and out. 2 weeks at a time. Great fun if you like being away.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago

Important site. That money is peanuts.

Andyy
Andyy
2 months ago

While I don’t have any objections to providing NTS with a reliable revenue stream, I do wonder why, if it’s an important site likely to be required for years to come, MoD doesn’t just compulsory purchase it?

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
2 months ago
Reply to  Andyy

Why on earth would you want to do that, it’d cost a bloody fortune for MOD to maintain and protect it. It isn’t a UNESCO site because of the radar site it’s more unique than Stonehenge (I’m being serious about that). The MOD rent probably doesn’t cover the work NTS have to do, it’s more a contribution. NTS maintain the water supply, the Helipad, the waste system and the Jetty. There is a zero pollution requirement due to the unique ecology so it’s not cheap. So it’s still public money being used for public use and it probably gives the… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by ABCRodney