SEAFIELD HOUSE IS SAVED

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH) welcomes the sale of Seafield House and grounds to econstruct design and build, an Ayr-based developer founded by Robin Ghosh. Seafield House is SAVED! The sale was concluded yesterday, Friday 10 October 2014.  Econstruct plan to restore Seafield House as residential apartments and build a small number of new-build houses in the grounds.

We extend our warmest thanks to all those who supported our campaign to SAVE Sir William Arrol’s former home in Ayr. We thank those who became Friends, attended public meetings, visited our exhibitions & posted messages of support on our website/Facebook page & Twitter feed. We thank in particular Marcus Binney, President of SAVE Britain’s Heritage, and his colleagues, who have been the head, heart and soul of our campaign from day one.

A new chapter is opening for Seafield House. We wish Robin Ghosh and his colleagues all success and will support them as they follow through the planning and consents process.

Again, we extend our warmest thanks to all those who supported our campaign to SAVE Seafield House, Sir William Arrol’s former home in Ayr.

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Messages of Support for decision on sale of Seafield House sent to NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH) have had a great response to their request for messages of support in their call on NHS Ayrshire & Arran to consider not only best price in its decision on offers in the sale of Seafield House. Despite the short timescale we had a tremendous response and are very grateful to those who took the time to write.

The messages, have been forwarded to the Chair and members of the NHS Board and copied to members of the Viability Group before their meeting to make their recommendations on the sale of Seafield House.

Download a pdf of the letter from FoSH requesting messages of support and read the collated responses

Or read the messages of support online. Further messages will be added to the page as they are received.

Offers Received in the Sale of Seafield House: FoSH Seeks Messages of Support

We understand that we are close to the point at which NHS Ayrshire & Arran’s Viability Group will meet to discuss its recommendation on offers received in the sale of Seafield House. We further understand that offers were made. This is a great success given the many years that Seafield House lingered on the market under threat of demolition. The fact that a closing date was set on 11 December last year was a real step forward.

The restoration of Seafield House by way of enabling development is a viable option. With the support of SAVE Britain’s Heritage, FoSH has set out its view is that no offer should be discounted on price alone. FoSH has communicated this to NS Ayrshire & Arran and to members of its Viability Group.

Our grounds for best price not being the only factor are:

  •  neglected state of the building. As the Scottish Historic Environment Policy (SHEP) says clearly:
    A huge investment of money, energy and materials went into these buildings – it would be poor stewardship of this inheritance to neglect it“.
  • blanket TPO
  •  community buyout provision in the Community Empowerment & Renewal Bill that is currently before the Scottish Parliament.

In making this case, we would appreciate you sending us a message of support to info@friends-of-seafield-house.org.uk that calls on NHS Ayrshire & Arran’s Viability Group to base its recommendation not only on achieving best price but taking account of the neglected state of the building, blanket TPO & provision for community buyout in the Community Empowerment & Renewal Bill that is before the Scottish Parliament. We will collate all messages and send them to NHS Ayrshire & Arran’s Chairman & Chief Executive & to its Viability Group. In addition, we will post messages on a dedicated page on our website, Facebook & add into our Twitter feed.

Many thanks for your support at this critical time in the campaign to SAVE Seafield House.

Seafield House features in Ayrshire Gems

It was great to see the Ayrshire Post featuring Seafield House in it’s Ayrshire Gems series last week.

newspaper article on Seafield House

31 Jan 14, Ayrshire Gems, Ayrshire Post

There is still no news on the outcome of the enabling development opportunity for Sir William Arrol’s former home. Friends of Seafield House are hoping that there will be announcement soon from NHS Ayrshire & Arran now that the closing date for offers in the sale of Seafield  House has passed.

Closing date set for sale of Seafield House

Ryden, the selling agent for NHS Ayrshire & Arran, owners of Seafield House, the former home in Ayr of Sir William Arrol, has today announced the closing date for receipt of formal legal offers in the sale of Seafield House.

The closing date is 12 noon on Wednesday 11 December 2013.

Those should contact Russell Rutherford at Ryden on his direct line 0141-270 3128; mobile 07831467169; by fax on 0141-204 3554 or by email russell.rutherford@ryden.co.uk. The closing date has now been added to the Ryden webpage for Seafield House.

Image of the Seafield House page on the Ryden website

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH) welcomes the setting of a closing date. Seafield House urgently needs a sympathetic new owner who/that will renovate this important B-listed building by way of the proceeds of an enabling development in Seafield House’s extensive grounds.   FoSH have issued a media release to help publicise this development and have offered the in-depth knowledge & expertise of Friends of Seafield House be made available to assist in the sympathetic restoration of the house.

SAVE make Seafield House their Building of the Month

SAVE_logo

SAVE Britain’s Heritage is a campaigning and conservation group championing the cause of endangered historic buildings. SAVE have been firm supporters of Friends of Seafield House from the beginning, offering fantastic support and advice.  We are delighted that, on the back of Ryden’s marketing drive and Developers Open Day, SAVE have featured Seafield House on their website as Building of the Month.

SAVE President Marcus Binney says: “we welcome the NHS trust’s decision to put the house on the market with the focus on restoration by means of enabling development. It is vital that the price sought takes account of the work needed to repair the listed building. The NHS Trust that owns it does not insure it as it has a self-insuring policy. In this case no money at all has been spent on repairs. To achieve a good scheme with a sensitive and a not excessive amount of new build in the grounds, it is vital to acknowledge the need for a scheme which provides the necessary investment in the historic building. It is also vital that in any planning permission the developer is obliged to repair the building at the same time that the first quarter of the development takes place. There should be no prospect of the land being sold off separately for development while the house is left derelict and unrepaired.”

New Enabling Development Opportunity Marketing Campaign for Seafield House including Open House on 16 September 2013

image of advert which appeared in the Ayrshire Post

Ayrshire Post – Ryden advert

Ryden has recently launched a new marketing campaign for Seafield House that stresses the enabling development opportunities that the 6.67 acres of grounds offer to those who take on the restoration of the B-Listed Seafield House. In the campaign, Ryden highlights the importance of Seafield House as the former residence of Sir William Arrol [1839-1913], whose company constructed iconic engineering landmarks including the Forth Rail Bridge & London Tower Bridge.

See the Ryden website for details of the sale of Seafield House.

Download Ryden’s marketing brochure for Seafield House –   Ryden_Seafield House_Aug13

Open Day on 16th September

The campaign includes an Open Day for developers and other interested parties on Monday 16 September from 1.30pm-5.00pm at the Savoy Park Hotel, 16 Racecourse Road, Ayr, South Ayrshire, KA7 2UT. Savoy Park Hotel is located a short drive from Seafield House. Site visits will be arranged throughout the afternoon. Developers & interested parties should contact Russell Rutherford at Ryden by email russell.rutherford@ryden.co.uk  or on 0141 204 3838.

Representatives from Friends of Seafield House and SAVE Britain’s Heritage will be attending the Open Day.

Press Coverage

SAVE have made Seafield House their Building of the Month on the back of the current marketing drive.

SAVE President Marcus Binney says: “we welcome the NHS trust’s decision to put the house on the market with the focus on restoration by means of enabling development. It is vital that the price sought takes account of the work needed to repair the listed building. The NHS Trust that owns it does not insure it as it has a self-insuring policy. In this case no money at all has been spent on repairs. To achieve a good scheme with a sensitive and a not excessive amount of new build in the grounds, it is vital to acknowledge the need for a scheme which provides the necessary investment in the historic building. It is also vital that in any planning permission the developer is obliged to repair the building at the same time that the first quarter of the development takes place. There should be no prospect of the land being sold off separately for development while the house is left derelict and unrepaired.”

image of newspaper article about the sale of Seafield House

Herald Commercial Property section – feature on the sale of Seafield House

image of article from the Ayrshire Post showing a photograph of the derelict Seafield House.

Ayrshire Post, 20 September 2013


Newspaper article on the marketing campaign for Seafield House

Ayr Advertiser, 24 Sep 2013

Newspaper comments by Bob Shields on the Future for Seafield House.

27 Sep 2013, Ayrshire Post: Bob Shields Comments…..Bob Shields suggests that we may see nothing happen till 2088; FoSH believe that the day will come much sooner!