Two new senior appointments announced at Scottish Land & Estates

Jackie McCrery and Eleanor Kay

SCOTTISH Land & Estates is delighted to announce that two leading figures in Scottish and UK agriculture and rural policy have rejoined the organisation to enhance its headquarters team. 

Eleanor Kay has returned to become Senior Policy Adviser on agriculture and climate change and Jackie McCreery rejoins as SLE’s new Legal Adviser.

Having previously acted as agriculture policy adviser from 2018 to 2020, Eleanor comes back to SLE’s Musselburgh HQ having spent the last two and a half years working in the US Embassy London for the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service as Agricultural Specialist for the United Kingdom and Ireland covering farming, climate change and trade matters.

Returning in a more senior role, Eleanor will lead on SLE’s policy development on Scottish farming, as the sector prepares for new support arrangements, and on environmental policy relevant to integrated land management, natural capital, climate change and ecosystem services.

Jackie McCreery was formerly Director of Policy & Parliamentary Affairs at Scottish Land & Estates (and its predecessor body SRPBA) until 2011 and returns to provide in-house counsel on all aspects of existing and emerging policy which impacts upon SLE members and their businesses.

As well as being a qualified lawyer, Jackie is well-known in Scottish farming as the co-owner and director of Yester Farm Dairies as well as being a director of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland. Jackie also recently chaired the Dairy Sector Climate Change Group, one of the five farmer-led groups set up to make recommendations to the Scottish Government for future policy on agriculture and tackling climate change.

Eleanor Kay said: “I’m really pleased to return to Scottish Land & Estates and I’m looking forward to reconnecting with the organisation’s members and working hard to shape policy that can enable land-based businesses to deliver for rural Scotland. In my time away from SLE there have been several significant events and political decisions that have altered the landscape, particularly for farming enterprises. I know the social, economic and environmental contribution these businesses continue to make is vital and will be for decades to come, it is crucial they have the right policy to help them thrive.”

Jackie McCreery said: “Through operating our own diversified farming business, I know the opportunities and challenges that face companies today, particularly in rural Scotland. The legal, taxation and policy environment in which our members operate is ever changing, whether at a Scottish or UK level, so I relish the opportunity to once again support our members and help make sure their interests are effectively represented at all levels. As the recent Wellbeing Economy research commissioned by SLE confirmed, Scottish estates already make a significant contribution but there is the potential for even greater benefits to be generated if the policy and regulatory framework is right. I’m looking forward to getting involved in that work.”

Sarah-Jane Laing, chief executive at Scottish Land & Estates, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Eleanor and Jackie back to SLE. Both made significant contributions to the organisation previously and their knowledge and experience of the sector and our members will be vital as we continue to build a positive outlook for rural business and land management in Scotland.”

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