Dane set to become Scotland's biggest landowner

A Danish billionaire is on the verge of becoming the largest landowner in Scotland.

Anders Holch Povlsen. Picture: submitted

Clothing magnate Anders Holch Povlsen is only 7,000 acres of land assets away from becoming the largest private landowner in Scotland.

The title is currently held by the Duke of Buccleuch however reports suggest that the Dane is close to a “game changing” deal that will see him become the largest landowner in Scotland.

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The 44-year-old has expanded native Caledonian pine forest on his estates and has indicated support for reintroducing lynx to the countryside to help control deer numbers.

Thomas MacDonell, head of conservation for Wildland, an umbrella company set up by Povlsen to manage his Scottish interests, said:

“We already own almost as much land as Buccleuch but of course that isn’t the goal. We want to bring natural environments back to the Highlands, and implement landscape-scale habitat enhancement in the presence of herbivores and people.”

Povlsen owns 11 Highland estates and recently purchased the 18,000-acre Eriboll estate in Sutherland which took his land holding in Scotland to 218,364 acres, or about 1% of Scotland.

Whereas much of Buccleuch’s land was acquired in the 15th century, Povlsen’s rise up the landowners’ league table has been swift — it started in 2006 with his purchase of the 43,000-acre Glenfeshie estate.