FoSH Hon Secretary, Ann Mott

It is with sadness and apologies for the delay in posting this notice that FoSH notes the passing of our Ann Mott, our Founding Secretary & laterly our Honorary Secretary.


Ann passed away on 20 November 2018. FoSH Committee Member Rob Close attended the funeral service at Masonhill Crematorium, Ayr on 29 November in a private capacity.


Questions raised for Seafield House developer, Robin Ghosh, Director, econstruct design & build, post 5th FoSH AGM

Questions were raised for Seafield House developer, Robin Ghosh, Director, econstruct design & build, in the discussion post 5th AGM of 14 May 2018. Put to him by letter from the FoSH Chair on 23.05.18. Answers received from him by email 3.09.18:

At the public exhibition, the developer did not make absolutely clear that SH would be conserved and converted into apartments in the first phase of the development. This is the agreed FoSH position and was agreed by those present at the AGM.
Q. Will the developer confirm that SH will be conserved and converted into apartments in the first phase?
A. I can confirm that it is our intention, and this is proposed as part of our panning submission, to restore and convert Seafield House into apartments immediately on receipt of planning approval as part of the initial stage of works on site.

On the developer’s drawings, the lane from Seafield Crescent into the SH grounds is shown as pedestrian, however the lane provides road access to adjacent houses.
Q. When will the error of the lane showing as pedestrian only be corrected?
A.It is not our intention to use the land noted on the proposed site plan leading to and from Seafield Crescent as a means of vehicular access to the Seafield site. This will be part of the proposed pedestrian link from the site to the surrounding area. It is noted that this land is currently used as a secondary vehicular access to adjoining properties. I can confirm it is also not our intention to change this situation and such properties will still be afforded access however this route will be predominantly to encourage pedestrian movements.

The Fort, Seafield & Wallacetown Community Council (FSWCC) has written on more than one occasion to the developer asking for clarification on ownership of the SH boundary wall. To date there has been no reply.
Q. When will the developer respond to FSWCC?
In terms of the site boundary wall, I can confirm this falls within the ownership of Econstruct. It is not our intention to alter the wall other than at the proposed new access point with Doonfoot Road. The remaining wall be checked and repaired where required.

Queries also were put on the listed status of the boundary wall.
Q. Will the developer now confirm its understanding of the listing status?
It is our understanding and interpretation that the wall forms part of the listed status of Seafield House.

A number of questions arose on the tree belt with concern expressed on the extent of loss proposed.
Q. Will the developer now confirm the extend of its proposal for tree removal?
In terms of the existing trees within the site, we have undertaken a detailed tree survey of all trees and groupings. In order to facilitate the new residential development many trees within the grounds are proposed for removal. However the tree survey makes reference to the quality of the existing tree planting scheme and with a lack of maintenance over the years and the self-seeding nature of many of the trees, the general health of much of the tree grouping is not great. All trees to the south of Seafield House (front area) are proposed for retention along with groupings to the perimeter of the site. As part of the application submission a landscape architect has been appointed to design an extensive mature planting scheme for the redeveloped site.

Also on the tree belt, the maintenance of which has been lacking since econstruct took on ownership.
Q. Will the developer confirm when tree maintenance will commence?
Some minor tree works have been undertaken to help with overhanging branches to some properties along Seafield Crescent. On receipt of planning approval tree work will commence within the site including a management scheme and pruning of those trees remaining. Further extensive management and maintenance will be agreed and in place for the enhanced landscaping scheme and in place for the completion of the development.

It was noted that despite a commitment in publicly-available pre-planning communications with South Ayrshire Council, the developer has not attended FoSH AGMs.
Q. Will econstruct – with its joint-venture partner CALA Homes – communicate directly their plans with FoSH before submission of their planning application?
I can confirm that I will make arrangements to meet with FoSH prior to the formal planning submission to present the proposed scheme and discuss our proposal in more detail. A date for this can be arranged. *

*This date has now been arranged. The FoSH Committee will meet Robin Ghosh on
4 October. An update will be posted on our website and communicated by email to our mailing list shortly afterwards.        

FoSH 5th AGM : Post Meeting Note

Post Meeting Note:

The FoSH AGM, held on Monday 14 May at the Ellisland House Hotel, was well attended by Seafield residents and FoSH Friends.

Outwith the formal business  of the meeting, Patrick Lorimer, FoSH Chair, read a statement from Robin Ghosh, Director, econstruct design & build – the Seafield House owner – giving his apologies for not attending the meeting and an update on progress towards submission of the planning application to conserve and restore Seafield House into apartments and develop new builds in the grounds.

The statement is as follows:

 “My apologies for not being able to attend the 5th AGM on Monday. Following from the success of the public exhibition we have reviewed the proposal and are making some minor adjustments to the planning package in advance of the planning submission. There have been no significant alterations to SH other than additional detailing within the drawing package along with a structural package and the viability options for the internal fit out.

Bat Survey: We have instructed a detailed bat survey of the house and grounds which can only commence after the 1st May. We now are awaiting the final survey work and findings to be completed. We had hoped that this survey work could be undertaken when the planning application was submitted and then follow on however planning advised they would rather the bat survey was included with the original submission and not added later.

 Landscape Architect: A landscape architect has been appointed to work with us on the project to develop a sensitive mature planting scheme within the development. This design will be submitted along with the planning package.

 Security: The security system positioned within SH and externally is certainly preventing entry to the building and loitering within the grounds.

We have containers on site and will be starting to move some of the damaged stonework from around the perimeter of the building into storage for safe keeping along with other salvageable items.

 We anticipate the submission of the full planning package within the month of June and as always we will notify you of this position in advance. The technical building warrant package will be overlapped with the planning sub mission and construction works are ready to start immediately following approval.”

There followed discussion of issues relating to Seafield House.  FoSH has put the questions raised to the developer. His replies have now been posted.



GDPR & Privacy Policy Update

In line with the The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679, which comes into effect on 25 May 2018, Friends of Seafield House is complying with the provisions of the regulations for our communications to be on an opt-in basis.  We are almost there! This post will reach all those who have signed up to receive our web posts. By separate communication we will ask if you would like to continue to receive these posts. We hope that those who have signed up will agree to continue to receive these posts, by opting in to receive future communications.

Below is our updated privacy policy, which can also be found as a separate page on our website:

This privacy policy sets out how Friends of Seafield House (FoSH) uses and protects any information that you give Friends of Seafield House when you use this website.

Security:We are committed to ensuring that your information is secure. Our aim is to prevent unauthorised access or disclosure. We consider that we have put in place suitable physical, electronic and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information we collect online on our WordPress website. We use WordPress databases, only for providing updates when content is added to the site

Comments and Memories: Should you submit a comment on our campaign or share a memory for us to post in the Memories section of our website, we assume that you agree to it being seen publicly. Please note that you can withdraw the comment by emailing us or using our website contact form. We will endeavour to respond within 48-hours to any request to remove material.

Mailing Lists: Our website enables you to sign up to receive posts and updates on our campaign. We also email information where you have agreed for your email address to be retained for such campaign email updates.

What we collect: We may collect the following information:

  • name & user name (where applicable)
  • contact information including email address
  • name & address where you have requested we contact you by mail

We do this in order to: 

  • to send updates and information about our campaign that we think you may find interesting
  • to post your comments and memories of Seafield House and Sir William Arrol

Links to other websites: Our website contains links to other websites of interest. However, once you have used these links to leave our site, please note that such sites are not governed by this privacy statement.

 Controlling your personal information: You may request details of personal information which we hold about you under the Data Protection Act 1998 and which we have updated in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679, which comes into effect on 25 May 2018. If you would like a copy of the information held on you please write to the FoSH Secretary, Friends of Seafield House, c/o 4 Eglinton Terrace, Ayr KA7 1JJ

This policy is effective from 25 May 2018.

FoSH 5th AGM



Fifth Annual General Meeting (AGM)
of the
Friends of Seafield House (FoSH)
will be held on
Monday 14 May 2018
at the
Ellisland House Hotel
19 Racecourse Rd, Ayr KA7 2TD

All Members – FoSH Friends – are invited to attend

Following the AGM, a presentation will be made on econstruct design & build’s planning application for the restoration of Seafield House

1. Welcome and opening remarks from Patrick Lorimer, FoSH Chair
2. Ordinary business
2.1 To receive a Report from the Management Committee on the last year’s activities
2.2 To receive and approve an examined Report on the Statement of Accounts and Balance Sheet for the year to 31st March 2018 together with the Examiner’s report
2.3 To receive and agree the Base Budget for the ensuing year
2.4 To appoint an independent Examiner to examine the accounts for the ensuing year
3.0 Elections
3.1 To conduct the election of the Management Committee (“one third of the Management Committee shall retire annually and shall be eligible for re-election” – FoSH Founding Deed)
4.0 Founding Deed
4.1 To consider any Amendment(s) to the Founding Deed (Amendments to the Founding Deed may be proposed at the AGM)

Dated: 19 April 2018
By order of the FoSH Management Committee

Marking the Passing of FoSH Patron, Sir William McAlpine (1936 – 2018)

FoSH wishes to mark the passing of and pay tribute to our Patron, Sir William McAlpine who passed away on 4 March, aged 82. Our Chair, Patrick Lorimer, has written to his widow, Lady Judith McAlpine, to convey our condolences.

The invitation to become our Patron – together with Andrew Arrol – was made on the invitation of Marcus Binney, President of SAVE Britain’s Heritage. Sir William McAlpine’s passion for construction and engineering was legendary. Described as “humorous, self-deprecating and diplomatic with a shrewd business brain”, he imbued qualities that were also found in Sir William Arrol, whose vision and drive was central to the construction of engineering icons including the Forth Bridge and Tower Bridge.

FoSH is immensely grateful to Sir William McAlpine for supporting our campaign to SAVE Seafield House, Sir William Arrol’s former home in Ayr. We hope soon to be able to post the good news that Seafield House’s owners, econstruct design & build, has submitted its planning application to restore and convert the house into apartments and build homes in the grounds.

The link below is to Sir William’s obituary in The Telegraph, one of many written to mark the passing of an engineering and construction legend:

Tribute to Dr John McClure MBE

Friends of Seafield House Committee Member, Dr John McClure MBE, passed away peacefully at home on 30 January 2018, aged 74. John was diagnosed five years ago with bowel cancer. His courage and dignity shone, as did his warmth, humour and style; John’s signature bow ties a hallmark.

John served as a Registrar in Pediatrics at Seafield Children’s Hospital from 1970 to 1971, and as a Consultant from 1975 until its closure. He was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List last year for services to pediatric healthcare.

John was Chairman of the Scottish Cot Death Trust (SCDT), a position he held since 2002, having joined the Trust in 1991. For the first time, the International Conference on SIDS, Stillbirth and Baby Survival will be held this year in Glasgow. SCDT is hosting the conference in June on behalf of the International Society for the Prevention of Perinatal and Infant Death (ISPID) and the International Stillbirth Alliance (ISA). That this prestigious event is coming to Glasgow is further testament to John’s trailblazing work over many years.

John was one of the leaders of the “Save Seafield” Campaign in 1978. In joining the campaign to SAVE Seafield House by Friends of Seafield House, with SAVE Britain’s Heritage and others, John showed his generosity of spirit in taking on another campaign: one close to his heart. Although John was unable to attend regular Committee meetings, he was active in supporting the campaign by telephone and email. Friends of Seafield House will continue its campaign with renewed drive in honour of John’s memory.

John’s funeral service was held this morning at Ayr St Columba Church. Over 600 people attended to pay their respects. The service was led by Rev Fraser Aitken. A collection was made for the Scottish Cot Death Trust. FoSH Chair & Secretary attended to represent FoSH, make our donation on behalf of Committee Members and give our tribute to the family.

15 February 2018