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Scottish Independence Referendum Act 2013

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8(1)Subject to the provisions of this paragraph, persons authorised by a designated organisation are entitled, for the purpose of holding public meetings in furtherance of the organisation's referendum campaign, to the use free of charge, at reasonable times during the relevant period, of—S

(a)a suitable room in the premises of a school to which this paragraph applies in accordance with sub-paragraph (2), and

(b)any meeting room to which this paragraph applies in accordance with sub-paragraph (3).

For this purpose, “the relevant period” means the period of 28 days ending with the day before the date of the referendum.

(2)This paragraph applies to any school maintained by an education authority.

(3)This paragraph applies to meeting rooms situated in Scotland the expense of maintaining which is payable wholly or mainly by—

(a)the Scottish Ministers or any other part of the Scottish Administration, or

(b)any Scottish public authority with mixed functions or no reserved functions (within the meaning of the Scotland Act 1998).

(4)Where a room is used for a meeting in pursuance of the rights conferred by this paragraph, the person by whom or on whose behalf the meeting is convened—

(a)must pay any expenses incurred in preparing, warming, lighting and cleaning the room and providing attendance for the meeting and restoring the room to its usual condition after the meeting, and

(b)must pay for any damage done to the room or the premises in which it is situated, or to the furniture, fittings or apparatus in the room or premises.

(5)A person is not entitled to exercise the rights conferred by this paragraph except on reasonable notice; and this paragraph does not authorise any interference with the hours during which a room in school premises is used for educational purposes, or any interference with the use of a meeting room either for the purposes of the person maintaining it or under a prior agreement for its letting for any purpose.

(6)For the purposes of this paragraph (except those of paragraph (b) of sub-paragraph (4)), the premises of a school are not to be taken to include any private dwelling.

(7)In this paragraph—

  • dwelling” includes any part of a building where that part is occupied separately as a dwelling,

  • meeting room” means any room which it is the practice to let for public meetings, and

  • room” includes a hall, gallery or gymnasium.

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