FoSH talks for Doors Open Day fully booked

We are delighted to report that our outdoor talks on Seafield Craftsmanship: Then and Now for Doors Open Days have proved to be popular. All places on both talks are now fully booked and we have a growing waiting list. We are sorry to disappoint those who would have liked to join us but please keep an eye open for future talks that we will post on the website.

There are plenty of other events and places to visit for Ayrshire Doors Open Days on 10 and 11 September. Download the programme leaflet here. If you are passing Seafield House do stop and have a look at the fantastic restoration work that has been done on the building. You won’t be able to get access to the grounds but you will get a good view from the pedestrian entrance on Doonfoot Road.

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FoSH outdoor talk for Doors Open Days 2022

This year Friends of Seafield House are offering an in-person event for the Ayrshire Doors Open Days 2022 programme.

Seafield Craftsmanship : Then and Now
Saturday 10th September 2022 at 11am or 2pm (FULLY BOOKED)

Join us for an outdoor talk on the different crafts and crafts people that Sir William Arrol employed in the late 19th century to create Seafield House and the crafts and crafts people that have been employed by Econstruct in the company’s careful restoration of the building and conversion
into apartments.

Doors Open Days 2022 programme entry for Seafield House with description of the walk and painting of Seafield House through the railings by Gerard Stamp

FoSH Committee Member, Kirsty Menzies will lead the 1-hour outdoor talk, which will be offered twice on the day: the first talk at 11am and the second talk at 2pm. Each talk, which is free of charge, will be given to a maximum of 10 people. Tickets will be allocated on a first come first serve basis.

On the day, the tour will commence at the pedestrian entrance to Seafield House in Doonfoot Road. An introduction to the building will follow on from an initial viewing of the restored railings and stonework at the entrance. Notable features of the building’s exterior will be highlighted through a history of the crafts and crafts people employed by Sir William and the careful conservation of these features by Econstruct Estates Seafield Ltd as visible in the work of the crafts people and skilled trades people the company sought out for the restoration.

One highlight is the restoration of the entrance porch and lamp stand with its unusual Hexapus design; another is the restoration of the house’s formal gardens. By way of photographic panels, the detail of the craftsmanship of the original interior features will be illustrated and examples of salvaged brass door furniture and wood carving will be shown. The talk will conclude with a walk around the exterior of the building to see the extensive replanting under Jane Dobson’s landscape scheme before ending with a return to the pedestrian entrance.

Please note that this is an outdoor talk only and there will no access to the interior of Seafield House apartments.

We have had a fantastic response to this event and both talks are now fully booked with a waiting list for places.

FoSH thanks Econstruct Estates Seafield Ltd for enabling these talks to be given as part of Doors
Open Days 2022

FoSH 9th Annual General Meeting

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT THE

Ninth Annual General Meeting (AGM)

of the

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH)

will be held outdoors on
Monday 6 June 2022 at 3pm *

Old Racecourse, Ayr : see blue dot on map for location

*9th AGM held over into June this year with the apologies of the FoSH Secretary

AGM AGENDA

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 the Statement of Accounts and Balance Sheet* for the year to 31st March 2022

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)

*As in 2018 – 2020, there having been only a small number of transactions, the Examining is by those attending the AGM. All papers will be available for independent scrutiny at the AGM.

**Although no Examiner involved (see * above), the AGM will appoint an Examiner as per previous years.

Dated: 12 May 2022 : Notice issued by order of the FoSH Management Committee

Contact: Friends of Seafield House, c/o 4 Eglinton Terrace, Ayr KA7 1JJ

Seafield House apartments now being marketed

FoSH are delighted to see that the restoration of Seafield House has reached another landmark stage with the apartments now being marketed.

Computer generated visual of the front of Seafield House showing the building restored into apartments and the grounds landscaped.
Seafield House apartments visualisation © Econstruct Estates Seafield Ltd.

There are 10 apartments each with their own distinctive character which have been named in commemoration of the life and works of Sir William Arrol. The first to be completed will be Apartment 6, “The Forth”, which is the only new build apartment in the development. It is built on the footprint of the former conservatory and has its own external entrance through the original doorway with 1888 (the year Seafield House construction began) carved above. The other apartments will be accessed via the original entrance porch and vestibule which open into the grand main hall. These are currently at different stages of construction but it is hoped that all will be completed before the end of the year. The FoSH Committee are very pleased with the progress that has been made, especially recognising the impact of the Covid pandemic and Brexit.

Robin Ghosh and Derek Shennan of Econstruct Estates Seafield Ltd have put a lot of thought and care into the restoration. The plans have given the apartments a contemporary style while retaining some of the original character features of the rooms. For example, in what was the billiard room (now Apartment 4, “The Dalmarnock”) original timbers were used as a template to recreate the curved ceiling and a large glazed roof lantern installed in the centre. This and other features can be seen in the marketing brochure which shows the floor plans for each apartment and images of how these will look once completed.

You will find images, plans and marketing information on the Corum website and it is also being marketed via the Rightmove website.

Seafield House returns to Ayrshire Doors Open Days this weekend

This weekend, 11-12 September, is Ayrshire Doors Open Days and we are delighted that Kyle and Carrick Civic Society have added Seafield House to the list of buildings on offer for the second year running.

Showing Seafield House entry on the Doors Open  Days 2021 website.  With painting of Seafield House behind railings.

The link to our digital exhibition, Arrol’s Seafield House Revealed, is now live from the Doors Open Days Seafield House page. Take a tour the house, as it was in Sir William Arrol’s time, through the photographs of Bedford Lemere & Co. held by Historic Environment Scotland (HES).  Clicking on an image will link you to the original digital photograph on HES’s Canmore website, where you can use their zoom tool to explore the rooms in minute detail. It’s an excellent tool for focusing in on the interesting detail, including the architectural features such as painted tiles, decorative plasterwork and carved wood.

Be sure to check it out and the other fabulous buildings on offer this year that you can visit in person. If you are in Ayrshire why not take advantage of the opportunity to get out and visit some of them and take a walk along Doonfoot Road past Seafield House and see how renovations to the building are progressing. We’ve been taking regular photographs of the works on site and posting them on our website. So even if you can’t make it to Ayrshire you can take a virtual tour of the Seafield site, as it looks now, on our Gallery page.

Notice & Agenda : FoSH 8th AGM

In light of Covid-19 lockdown easing, FoSH has agreed that our 2021 Annual General Meeting can be held. Our 7th AGM could not be held in May 2020 given the first Covid-19 lockdown.

This AGM – our 8th – will be held as an outdoor, short, standing meeting at the rear of the Pavilion on Ayr’s Old Racecourse, which is situated opposite to Seafield House. For full details, please see the Notice & Agenda below.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT THE

Eighth Annual General Meeting (AGM)

of the

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH)

will be held outdoors on
Friday 14 May 2021 at 4pm

Old Racecourse, Ayr : see blue dot on map for location

AGM AGENDA

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 2021*

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)

*As in 2018 & 2019, there having been only a small number of transactions, the Examining is by the Committee with all papers available for independent scrutiny at the AGM

**As our 7thAGM could not be held in May 2020 given the Covid-19 lockdown, the third of the Management Committee that was required to retire at the 7th AGM will retire & stand for re-election at the 8th AGM.

Dated: 30 April 2021

Notice issued by order of the FoSH Management Committee
contact: Friends of Seafield House, c/o 4 Eglinton Terrace, Ayr KA7 1JJ

Seafield House Update: Work progressing after lockdown period

Photograph of the entrance to Seafield House with scaffolding erected to second floor

When we posted our last update in February little did we imagine that a worldwide pandemic would take hold, bringing massive challenges and changes to our lives. From March works were halted and businesses closed due to strict Coronavirus lockdown measures, including those at Seafield House. As lockdown restrictions eased work resumed on site and now much progress can be seen.

Work on Seafield House is underway and it is surrounded by scaffolding with a soft strip of the interior being carried out. Work on the new build homes on its grounds has also progressed, with the site marked out and foundations being laid.

The sales centre is open and banners have been put up showing the vision of how the finished Seafield Gardens development will look.

Friends of Seafield House will be following the build and sharing photographs on the website as it develops. Check out the timeline on our Gallery page to see how it changes over time.

Seafield House in Ayrshire Doors Open Days 2020 this weekend

Like many other events this year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, Doors Open Days 2020 has gone digital. It is offering people the chance to explore Scotland’s buildings through virtual tours, webinars, exhibitions, audio trails and other online offerings .

This weekend, 12-13 September, is Ayrshire Doors Open Days and we are delighted that Kyle and Carrick Civic Society have added Seafield House to the list of buildings on offer.

The link to our digital exhibition, Arrol’s Seafield House Revealed, will go live from the Doors Open Days Seafield House page at the weekend. This will give people the opportunity to tour the house, as it was in Sir William Arrol’s time, through the photographs of Bedford Lemere & Co. held by Historic Environment Scotland.  The page also displays the beautiful watercolour painting of Seafield House by acclaimed artist Gerard Stamp which was part of SAVE Britain’s Heritage exhibition on endangered buildings in June last year.

There are lots of other buildings with digital offerings too, so settle down with a cuppa this weekend and explore what Ayrshire has to offer from the comfort of your armchair.

Arrol’s Seafield House revealed: our new virtual exhibition

Friends of Seafield House had planned to launch the exhibition “Arrol’s Seafield House revelealed” on 16th May 2020 at Rozelle House, Ayr, in association with South Ayrshire Council, as part of 2020 Year of Coastal Waters.  The exhibition was in celebration of the 130th anniversary of the completion of Seafield House and the opening of the Forth Bridge, Sir William Arrol’s greatest construction.  However, as one of Arrol’s favourite poets, Robert Burns wrote, “The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft agley”.  Due to the COVID-19 lock-down we postponed the launch and instead bring you this virtual exhibition as a taster of the full exhibition, now planned for May 2021.

Screenshot of the home page of the exhibition titled "Arrol's Seafield House revealed" with balck and white photograph of the house.

Click on the image to enter the exhibition

 

The exhibition was created by FoSH Committee member, Kirsty Menzies, and offers a guided tour through Seafield House using the photographs of Bedford Lemere and Co., which are held by Historic Environment Scotland.  The photographs were taken by Harry Lemere on 12 May 1890, not long after the construction and interior decoration of Seafield House was completed. Our grateful thanks go to Historic Environment Scotland Archives for permission to use the images from their Bedford Lemere Seafield House collection.

Screenshot of tweet by Historic Environment Scotland on 15 June 2020 saying "William Arrol was the engineer whose company built the Forth Bridge - but have you ever wondered what his house was like?  No cantilivers in sight, but there is some rather interesting stuff from our #HESarchives in this from @ Friends Seafield!"

There may be no cantilevers in sight but we hope you will find the exhibition riveting nonetheless.

 

 

FoSH 2020 Annual General Meeting: Postponed

Given the current coronavirus lockdown and the prospect of extension, the FoSH 2020 AGM, is postponed. As set out in our Founding Deed, our AGM is to be held in May. This we have done over the past six years, but there is no prospect of being able to do so in the exceptional circumstances of this year.

The last FoSH Committee Meeting before lockdown was held on 20 February. At the meeting, the FoSH Committee agreed to hold this our seventh AGM on 18 May 2020. The meeting will instead be held at a date to be confirmed later in the year.

The FoSH Committee will give the required two-week’s notice of the new meeting date.

 

FoSH Secretary
2 May 2020