Surplus Topsoil

The deadline for expressions of Interest for this first round is 12 March 2021.

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar are inviting expressions of interest, in the first instance, from Community Groups and the local voluntary sector within the Western Isles in relation to surplus unscreened topsoil arising from the Goathill development, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis.

In promoting the sustainable reuse of greenfield soils, Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) have produced Regulatory Guidance (») (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) detailing those uses which are acceptable.  In broad terms, the topsoil can be used for general landscaping up to 150mm (6”) thick, construction of roads and verge areas and the formation of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) ponds.   Using the material for planting beds and use within polytunnels, polycarbonate tunnels, greenhouses or similar is also acceptable.  It cannot be used for stockpiling on third party sites or backfilling of quarries.

An Application for Topsoil (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) should be completed, where groups are required to provide a clear description of intended use, location, quantity sought, confirmation of land ownership status, and any requirement for planning permission.  

In the first instance the application form will be used to assess proposals and in due course, for successful applicants, this form would serve as the Declaration Form required by SEPA as outlined in their Regulatory Guidance (») (Opens in a new window or downloads a file).  

There will be no charge for the raw material though there will be a small administration and loading fee in accordance with the table below.    

In terms of quantities, requests for topsoil within the range of 1-1000 tonnes will be considered. There are various online calculator tools that will assist the applicant in estimating the volume required. 

The material is currently stockpiled at the Comhairle’s Bennadrove Landfiill site. The Comhairle will manage and operate the loading procedure and will provide the necessary labour and plant for this at Bennadrove.  However applicant groups will require to make their own arrangements for pick-up and delivery of the material and meet all associated haulage costs.

Quantity of Topsoil Sought Administration & Loading Fee (inc VAT)
Administration / Loading Fee
Under 1 Tonne  No Charge
1 - 5  Tonnes  £10 
5 - 10 Tonnes  £30 
10 - 20 Tonnes £50 
20 - 100 Tonnes  £75 
100 – 1000 Tonnes  POA 

*This includes the cost of loading the collecting vehicle

Contact Us

For further information please contact:

Customer Services

Tel:  01851 600 502


Online Form: Application for Topsoil (Opens in a new window or downloads a file)

Community Group Definition

For a community group to be eligible, it must either be a Community Council or meet the definition of a “community-controlled body” in section 19 of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015, which is that it must be a body (whether corporate or unincorporated) having a written constitution that includes the following:

  1. a definition of the community to which the body relates;
  2. provision that the majority of the members of the body is to consist of members of that community;
  3. provision that the members of the body who consist of members of that community have control of the body;
  4. provision that membership of the body is open to any member of that community;
  5. a statement of the body's aims and purposes, including the promotion of a benefit for that community; and
  6. provision that any surplus funds or assets of the body are to be applied for the benefit of that community.