The Little Houses Improvement Scheme (LHIS) is the National Trust for Scotland’s revolving fund building preservation trust with a mandate to help preserve the nation’s vernacular past. These buildings, which are usually domestic in character, are often quite humble in appearance but are no less important to the architectural and cultural heritage of Scotland than its fine country houses and castles. They are frequently overlooked and threatened with demolition. The LHIS seeks out threatened properties of significance, acquires and repairs them to a high standard, and once completed sells them in order to return capital to its revolving fund for future projects.
Dilapidated buildings generally form part of a historic townscape that has suffered from decades of neglect. The LHIS actively engages with local communities to find new uses for abandoned buildings which will bring lasting social benefit. This is often achieved through partnership with local housing providers. Sympathetic restoration of a significant building can become a source of community pride and act as a catalyst for further regeneration. The LHIS attempts to take a leading role through spearheading conservation in otherwise neglected communities.
The National Trust for Scotland
The National Trust for Scotland is the conservation charity that protects and promotes Scotland’s natural and cultural heritage for present and future generations to enjoy. Established in 1931, the Trust depends on the support of its membership of over 300,000, donations, legacies and grants in order to act as guardian of the nation’s magnificent heritage of architectural, scenic and historic treasures. The Trust is unique in that its activities cover the full range of heritage, encompassing both nature conservation and the built environment. The Trust’s challenge is to make this heritage relevant to the people of Scotland and all those who have an interest in the nation’s superb landscape and its history.
As an independent charity with limited government assistance, the Trust is reliant on individuals to continue its operations. Please support our work by visiting our properties, becoming a member, making a donation or arranging a legacy. By joining, you are supporting the conservation of these fine parts of Scottish heritage and there is the additional benefit of free entry to all our properties.