The reason for my enquiry being local rumour was that the Crown Estate lease was in a Third Party / Shell Company name thus reducing liabilities which MH may incur; this is not the case?
There is also, I am being led to believe in principle, a lease for a third MH site north of Carradale known locally as Cour which MH are calling Kilbrannan North. Has an application for this third site been received by the Crown Estate?
Marine Harvest (Scotland) are the tenants under the lease and all rights and liabilities rest solely with them.
The Carradale lease was to a company called Ocean Shells Ltd, which was subsequently acquired by Meridian Farms (Argyll) Ltd who in turn were acquired by Marine Harvest. It’s the consolidating nature of the industry. So even if the name on the lease is not Marine Harvest, if Marine Harvest have 100% of the shareholding of the previous tenants, they effectively become the tenants.
If you look at either of the above companies on Companies House website, the latter of which is still stated as active, the registered address is Marine Harvest (Scotland) Ltd.
In reference to the “third site”; Marine Harvest have a Lease Option Agreement here. This is a short term, conditional agreement for a secure and exclusive interest that can be exercised for a full lease once all necessary consents – planning permission, marine licence, etc – have been secured. It does not permit any deployment of cultivation equipment and will lapse if an application for planning permission has not been submitted and registered within the permitted two-year milestone.