The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Monday, 27 June 2016

Donald Trump reopens £200 million Turnberry

£200 million investment sets Turnberry 
resort apart as an opulent masterpiece

Donald J. Trump officially reopened Trump Turnberry, a Luxury Collection Resort, at last week’s grand opening ceremony, attended by his family and VIP guests. 

“To me, there is nothing more important than supporting my children," said Mr Trump, "and I am honored to be here with my family for the orand opening of the iconic Trump Turnberry. Our vision of creating an absolute masterpiece, that is unrivaled anywhere in the world, has now become a reality. It is incredible to see Turnberry return back to its original grandeur.      
"As a businessman, I have created many of the most amazing properties in the world, remaking skylines and employing tens of thousands of people in the process - from Trump Tower on 5th avenue to a city on the Hudson River, Trump Place, and soon the historic Old Post Office Building in on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington D.C. 
“Trump Turnberry is not only an iconic property, but it is also an important statement about the financial bonds between America and the United Kingdom, and how both our societies together benefit from our strong relations in trade and commerce." 

Set along a richly historic landscape and coupled with the incredible renovation of Turnberry’s legendary Ailsa Championship golf course, the resort now takes its position as one of the most opulent luxury retreats in the world. This £200 million renovation involves every facet of the 800 acre property, from the magnificent remodeling of all guest rooms and suites to the new state-of-the-art grand ballroom, world-class restaurants, the restoration of the iconic Turnberry Lighthouse, the Golf Academy at Trump Turnberry and much more. The grand re-opening of Trump Turnberry marks a new chapter in the hotel’s illustrious 110 year history, which has hosted four of the most exciting championships in all of golf, housed some of the most influential people in modern history, served as the Royal Air Force in the United Kingdom through two World Wars and was the birthplace of Robert the Bruce, King and Founder of Scotland, in 1307.  

Leading the renovation alongside his father, Eric Trump commented: “Trump Turnberry is truly a masterpiece, and we have spared no expense as we underwent this truly transformative renovation. Every facet of the property has been improved, from the ballrooms and guest rooms in our spectacular hotel to the legendary championship Ailsa course. There’s no question that Turnberry will continue to top the charts as one of, if not the most, iconic golf resort anywhere on Earth.” 

Turnberry, located along the majestic Ayrshire coastline, consists of 103 state-of-the-art guest rooms, including four magnificent suites (named after Tom Watson, Nick Price, Stewart Cink and Greg Norman, past winners of the prestigious Open Championships hosted at Turnberry). Additionally, included in this iconic renovation is the Grand Tea Lounge & Bar, the world-class Duel in the Sun and 1906 restaurants, as well as the creation of the Donald J. Trump Ballroom, a 500 person grand ballroom set to open in August 2016, which will be the most luxurious meeting facility anywhere in Europe.  

Adding to this substantial list of enhancements is the full restoration of the historic Turnberry Lighthouse, which for over a century has acted as an iconic image of Scotland and beautiful Scottish golf. The Turnberry Lighthouse has been transformed into the finest halfway house in the world, creating an experience that is truly unrivaled. Additionally, the lighthouse will offer the United Kingdom’s most spectacular two-bedroom presidential suite, which will be priced starting from £3,500 per night. Elegant in its d├ęcor and grand in its aura, the Turnberry Lighthouse, overlooking the Firth of Clyde, offers breathtaking views across the Irish Sea, the Isle of Arran, the famous Ailsa Craig and beyond. 

A range of experiences are available for guests, including exhilarating outdoor pursuits within the onsite Turnberry Adventures facility and The Spa at Turnberry. The resort is a convenient 25 miles (20 minutes) from Glasgow Prestwick Airport, 55 miles (one hour) from Glasgow Airport and 100 miles (one hour and thirty minutes) from Edinburgh Airport. 

Overnight accommodation rates for the hotel start from £389, including breakfast, and from £3,500  per night for The Lighthouse Suite. 

For more information visit or telephone: 01655 333991. 

Trump Turnberry is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Paul Mulrennan’s aeroplane flies to Land O’Burns success at Ayr Racecourse

By: Iain Ferguson 

JOCKEY Paul Mulrennan, who rode a three timer at Ayr on Saturday to follow his double on Friday evening described Marsha, the horse he rode to win the Listed Scottish Sun/British Stallion Studs EBF Land O’Burns Fillies Stakes, as an “aeroplane”. 

A return to five furlongs suited the lightning quick daughter of Acclamation as she shot clear to win by two and a half lengths from Fine Blend. 

Mulrennan said afterwards: “She’s an aeroplane. She was so keen that my left arm was dead from halfway. She’s just all speed and so quick they couldn’t go fast enough for me. In the end it was just so easy.” 

The jockey’s other wins on Saturday came on the Mark Johnston trained Miss Infinity in the six furlong two-year-old race and Central Square in the one mile two-furlong handicap. 

The Class 2 Scottish Sun On Sunday Handicap was won by the Marwan Koukash owned, Richard Fahey trained and George Chaloner ridden Gabrial’s Kaka. 

And the Sunsport Handicap saw Timeless Art win for Karl Burke and Joey Haynes prompting one of the owners Jon Hughes to say: “He could be gelded now with a view to an autumn campaign when he may return here in September. We will be delighted to come back as all his owners love Ayr.” 

The day’s attendance of 7,469 was a record for the fixture. 

Friday night’s highlight was the Tennent’s Handicap over six furlongs which was won by Intisaab, trained by David O’Meara and ridden by Shelley Birkett who were repeating their win at the track earlier in the month. 

One of the best performances of the two days came from the Jim Goldie trained Euchen Glen (pictured above) in Friday’s concluding Caledonia Best Handicap over one mile two furlongs. He met with lots of trouble but Paul Mulrennan managed to extricate his mount and got in front 50 yards out to win by half a length from Gworn. 

For further information please contact Iain Ferguson on 01292 294972 or 07795 565691. 

Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are Founder Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Monday, 20 June 2016

Three South Ayrshire schools compete at Sir Tom Hunter Challenge finals

A team of entrepreneurial young people from three secondary schools in South Ayrshire (Prestwick Academy, Marr College and Queen Margaret Academy) battled it out at the finals of the Sir Tom Hunter Challenge last week.

The finals held in Kilmarnock were an opportunity for nine teams, three from each Ayrshire authority to present their innovative business ideas to Sir Tom and his panel of judges.

The team from Prestwick Academy (pictured above) were delighted when they came joint third with their idea Thermoband. This unique wristband uses body heat to create electricity which is then stored and can be used to charge smartphones.

The three students impressed with the depth of their product research and Sir Tom said they were the best prepared when it came to questions from the judging panel. The team also scooped £1,000 to help develop their idea.

The team’s general manager Emily Noble (15) said: “I am incredibly grateful and immensely appreciative to Sir Tom Hunter for giving me this opportunity.” 

Young people from Marr College and Queen Margaret Academy also did themselves and their school proud. 

‘Make-Me-Up, Shake-Me-Up’ was the business idea presented by students (pictured above) from Queen Margaret Academy who have developed an app and customised tablet stand to demonstrate make-up techniques.  Inserting the tablet into the stand turns the tablet into a mirror using the inbuilt camera and the app then shows users how to apply their make-up.

The judges were impressed with the number of ways the product could make a profit for the team, although Sir Tom conceded he may not be the target market.

Fey Donoghue (14) product/ service development manager said:” I could not believe how confident I felt when on the stage - I never thought that I could stand in front of an audience like that.”

The team of five (pictured above) from Marr College introduced ‘Solar Net’, an idea which uses solar panels to automatically open and close blinds. The solar blinds can also be operated via a timer. 

The judges were impressed with the well thought out concept and loved the potential of the product which could be used in buildings such as hospitals.

IT manager at Solar Net, Mark Howard (15) said "It was an amazing night and a great experience. The talks at the start were very interesting and inspiring"

The Sir Tom Hunter Challenge promotes entrepreneurship and economic awareness in young people. As well as fitting in with the school curriculum, the challenge promotes the development of key skills in communication and teamwork.

Sir Tom Hunter, entrepreneur and philanthropist (pictured above) said: ”This schools competition is about preparing our young people both for the world of work and in creating their own work, their own businesses, giving them the confidence and motivation to do so. Why? Because 100% of the net new jobs in our economy will come from businesses less than five years old and, as importantly, around half of the young people in primary school today will go to jobs not yet created! We need to do all we can to help our educators support our young people in a highly dynamic and changing economy, educating them for the future world of work. 

"The Ayrshire schools taking part were a huge inspiration and should be roundly congratulated, as should the teachers and Councils supporting them. The ideas the teams came up with, the teamwork they put in, the opportunities they identified, all contributed to an exceptional outcome. These young people can and will succeed either in the world of work or in building their own entrepreneurial workforce. Ayrshire schools - a true inspiration for all of Scotland."

South Ayrshire Council is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

New school extension will transform education in Annbank and Mossblown

Education for pupils at Annbank Primary School is set to be transformed as work gets underway on a significant new extension. The South Ayrshire Council project will deliver a new focal point for the communities of Annbank and Mossblown, while also allowing the local library to move to a new purpose-built facility.

[Pictured: Annbank Primary School extension – an 
artist’s impression of how the new building might look.]

The £1.6m project will provide a new gym hall, as well as a separate multi-use dining hall, which will also be available for use by the local community. Other features include: accessible changing rooms, a new kitchen, substantial storage space, and new PE equipment and chairs.

The main contractor for the project will be Prestwick based Ashleigh (Scotland). The building was designed by South Ayrshire Council Professional Design Services.

Head teacher at Annbank Primary, Davina Chalmers said the project was a major addition. “This striking new extension is going to make a huge difference to both the pupils and the public.

“With a brand new gym and dining hall, we’ll also be creating a focal point for the school that will also be widely used by the community.

“Everyone at the school is looking forward to the new wing opening next year, when this fantastic new facility will help to transform the way we work.”

The project also paves the way for the existing Mossblown Branch Library to be relocated to the school, creating a custom-built, modern space that will be used by pupils and the wider community.

Donald Gillies, South Ayrshire Council’s Head of Property and Risk, said the project would deliver significant improvements to the local community. “This project is part of a significant investment in South Ayrshire schools that will safeguard education for the local community for generations to come.

“The extension will greatly improve the facilities on offer, while also giving the public far greater access to a new purpose-built extension and a brand new library

“With the main work now getting underway, I’m confident people will like what they see when the doors open next year.”

Initial work will see the demolition of the existing janitor’s house on the school campus. The main contract works are due to begin on 13 June 2016, with completion expected in spring 2017.

South Ayrshire Council is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Drop in demand as activity in Scottish housing market dips during May

Activity in the Scottish housing market slowed during May, as a decline in new properties coming on to the market was accompanied by a drop in new buyer enquiries. A net balance of 13 percent more chartered surveyors reported a fall in demand while a net balance of 8 percent saw sales tail off last month.

Despite softer activity, house prices in Scotland remained firm and a net balance of 15 percent more respondents expect prices to climb in the next few months. This is due, in part, the continued decline in supply, with 22 percent (net balance) of surveyors reporting a decrease in new properties coming on the market in May. Supply has now failed to keep up with demand, even during more quiet months, for much of the past 3 years. 

While prices are continuing to rise modestly across the rest of the UK, this trend looks set to fade, with 10 percent more respondents predicting that prices would fall rather than rise over the coming three months. This is the first time that a fall in prices has been predicted since 2012. London and East Anglia are expected to be worst hit with 43 per cent (net balance) and 33 per cent (net balance) of respondents saying that prices will fall over the next quarter.

Sarah Speirs, Director RICS in Scotland, said: “Across the UK it appears that we are looking at a short term drop in house prices caused by the uncertainty resulting from the forthcoming EU Referendum, coupled with a slowdown following the rush to get into the market ahead of the tax change on the purchase of investment properties. In Scotland, prices look set to remain firm, despite a dip in activity, as demand continues to outpace supply.

“We urge the new Scottish Government to make the delivery of housing, across all tenures, a priority during their term. From new supply, to improving the poor condition of the country’s existing housing stock and developing plans to bring back into use Scotland’s 27,000 long-term empty properties, more needs to be done to address the current imbalance.”

The survey revealed that in the longer term, while house prices are thought likely to regain momentum, rental growth looks set to outpace house price inflation.

Craig Henderson MRICS, Graham + Sibbald, commented: “In recent weeks a number of clients have raised the Brexit issue and questioned the potential impact if the UK chooses to leave the EU. Some concerns have been raised if this was to be the outcome, resulting in some hesitancy on the part of buyers.”

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Elite Ayrshire Business Circle Annual Summer Luncheon at Trump Turnberry

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle will be holding its popular Annual Summer Luncheon at Trump Turnberry on Friday 1 July 2016.

This event will provide an enviable opportunity for members and guests to take part in a guided tour of the recently completed refurbishments.

Places at the Luncheon are limited. Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle will naturally be given priority when it comes to the allocation of seats at the event, but all Ayrshire business people will also be most welcome to attend, subject to availability of places.


Photographs from one of our previous Annual Summer Luncheons at Trump Turnberry are available to view on Flickr. CLICK HERE

Friday, 3 June 2016

Ayr prepares to host 2nd Battalion’s homecoming parade

South Ayrshire Council is preparing to welcome The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland back from their latest tour of duty overseas. On Wednesday 8 June a homecoming parade will take place in Ayr.

The 2nd Battalion are returning from Afghanistan with 400 troops expected to march through Ayr town centre, where large crowds will line the streets to show their support.

South Ayrshire Provost Helen Moonie said she was sure the soldiers would be warmly received. “We’re proud to welcome hundreds of soldiers to the streets of Ayr after a gruelling tour which saw them put their lives on the line in Afghanistan.

“We have a long tradition of supporting the armed forces, and I know the people of South Ayrshire will come out in numbers to show their support.

“After the parade we’ll be welcoming 2nd Battalion to the Town Hall, where a number of local soldiers will be awarded service medals following their action in Kabul, in what promises to be a memorable day for all those involved.”

The soldiers will march from Wellington Square at 11:30am, past the Wallace Tower and then on to a civic reception at the Town Hall where soldiers will be presented with operational service medals.”

This year marks 100 years since the battle of the Somme during the First World War, so it is particularly poignant that we celebrate with those that have returned and remember those that have made the ultimate sacrifice as well.

Lieutenant Colonel Graeme Wearmouth OBE, Commanding Officer 2 SCOTS, said: “It will be a tremendous honour for the Battalion to parade in Ayr and thank the local community for its ongoing support.

“As the Kabul Protection Unit, 2 SCOTS’ primary mission was to protect NATO advisers and other personnel striving to advise and mentor the various Afghan Security institutions which are so critical to Afghanistan’s future success.

“Following these parades, we’ll be preparing for the next challenge: being held at readiness as part of Scotland’s Fighting 51st Infantry Brigade.”

South Ayrshire Council is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

CKD Galbraith offers for sale superb country house situated in idyllic rural Ayrshire location

Leading independent Scottish property consultancy CKD Galbraith is offering for sale Drumcoyle House, by Coylton, Ayrshire, a superb country house situated in an idyllic rural location just six miles from Ayr with beautiful views across the rich parkland of Sundrum Estate and the countryside around. 

The property extends to about twenty acres and has first class equestrian facilities as well as a detached holiday cottage which provides an additional source of income through the summer months.

Internally Drumcoyle House is bright and modern with well-proportioned rooms and a simple “Mediterranean” feel. 

The breakfasting kitchen has excellent storage and ample space for a large dining table and chairs. There is also a separate dining room adjacent to the kitchen. 

The sunroom is a wonderful room, warmed with a log burning stove and with views across the manicured gardens. 

Two bedrooms and a bathroom are located on the ground floor and there is also a living room with a little kitchen and bathroom off which can be used as a self-contained apartment. Two further ensuite bedrooms are located on the first floor.

Stables Cottage is a charming pied-a-terre situated within the grounds of Drumcoyle and currently operating as a successful holiday let during the summer and autumn months. It reflects the standards of the main house with an open plan living and kitchen area and two ensuite bedrooms.

The policies of Drumcoyle are immaculate. A tarmac driveway sweeps up to the house bordered by a level well-tended lawn and gravel chips. 

At the rear there is a delightful pond sheltered by mature trees and crossed by an ornate metal bridge. 

The equestrian facilities are excellent. A purpose built stable block houses 12 stables and there is an adjoining WC and first aid room. In addition there is a large sand arena and turn out arena. The grazing land extends to about 18 acres in five well fenced fields.

Offers Over £675,000 are being sought.

PDF available on

About CKD Galbraith

CKD Galbraith is an independent property consultancy employing 225 staff in offices across Scotland including Edinburgh, Stirling, Perthshire, Cupar, Inverness, Castle Douglas, Ayr, Elgin, Galashiels, Kelso, and Aberdeen, offering local knowledge, national expertise and enjoying international reach.

The firm is Scotland’s largest and leading rural consultancy managing and providing advice on farm, forestry, land and estate interests on over three million acres.  CKD Galbraith provides the full range of property consulting services across the residential, commercial, rural and renewable energy sectors throughout Scotland and northern England. The partnership also enjoys a successful relationship with its associate firm CKD Kennedy Macpherson.

CKD Galbraith’s Ayr Office is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Trainer Keith Dalgleish and Maleficent Queen win at Ayr Racecourse

BY: Iain Ferguson

TRAINER Keith Dalgleish hailed his super filly Maleficent Queen, the 3-1 favourite, after she made it five wins from six runs when winning the £50,000 British Stallion Studs EBF Tennent’s Rothesay Stakes, a Listed Race over a mile and a quarter at Ayr’s Tennent’s Raceday last week.

[Trainer Keith Dalgleish (third right) with jockey Phil Makin 
and connections of his big Ayr winner Maleficent Queen.]

Keith said: ”As soon as this race was announced I had it in mind for her. She won here last September and obviously likes the track and she win well again today.

“I’ll speak to the owner and we may go for a group race next and might put her up in trip to a mile and a half.”

For the second Ayr meeting in a row Irish trainer Adrian Keatley saddled a treble. He started the ball rolling when Nice Vintage (3-1 favourite), ridden by Kieren Fallon, won the one mile two furlong CCE Enterprises Handicap by three and a quarter lengths from Grand Canyon.

The second leg of the three timer saw Anonymous Lady (3-1 joint favourite), again ridden by Kieren Fallon, get up on the line to win the five furlong Jacks On Fire Handicap from Classy Anne. And the treble was completed by Millefiori (4-1), the mount of young Robbie Dolan in the Franklin & Sons Apprentice Handicap.

Adrian, dashing to board a private plane from Prestwick back to Ireland, said: “I thought we would do well today and it’s great to have another treble at Ayr – it’s certainly my lucky course and it’s great to have Kieren riding for me.”

The biggest price winner of the day was the Jim Goldie trained Lady Cordie in division two of the six furlong handicap. The 33-1 chance, ridden by Joe Doyle, held off Insolenceofoffice by a nose.

For further information please contact Iain Ferguson on 01292 294972 or 07795 565691.

Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are Founder Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Friday, 13 May 2016

Belleisle Golf Clubhouse is officially opened ahead of the busy summer season

Course designer’s family give new facility their seal of approval

The new Belleisle Clubhouse in Ayr has been officially opened by South Ayrshire Council. The ribbon was cut for the new £1.5m facility on Wednesday 11 May, with golfers already descending on an impressive new structure which significantly improves facilities for golfers and guests.

The Belleisle championship course was designed by James Braid in 1927 and remains one of the most popular golf courses in Scotland, viewed by many as one of the best public inland courses in the country. James Braid’s granddaughters Marjorie Mackie and Betty Hope and his great granddaughter Fiona Collins were the special guests of honour at the event, where they saw first-hand how their famous relative’s legacy was being preserved for future generations.

The clubhouse was officially opened by South Ayrshire Provost, Helen Moonie.

Bill McIntosh, Leader of South Ayrshire Council, said the new clubhouse was a facility to be proud of, “This fabulous new building is the perfect fit with the surrounding courses which have built up an enviable reputation across Scotland and further afield.

“The clubhouse is a versatile building that provides modern facilities that will help to nurture the next generation of golfers, but will also play a role in community life, with a range of functions and events able to be held here.

“I’m confident that everyone that visits this eye-catching landmark will agree that the new clubhouse has been worth the wait, and it will help to attract fresh interest from golfers from around the world in the years ahead.”

The new Clubhouse features modern changing accommodation, a new professional golf shop, new starter facilities, club rooms, lounge area, and a golf simulator room. The clubhouse will operate as a family-orientated licenced premise with capacity for 180 people. A full-range of services including bar meals, receptions, televised sports, as well as outdoor events, will all be catered for.

Marjorie Mackie said the development meant that her grandfather’s work would continue to be enjoyed well into the 21st century, “This wonderful clubhouse perfectly complements the surrounding grounds and I’m sure my grandfather would have approved. 

“Belleisle and Seafield are the second of his double courses, after his Gleneagles Kings and Queens, which leaves these two courses in good company.

“My family and I are delighted to have been asked to attend as guests of honour at the official opening, with the family all very proud of our association with golf at Belleisle.” 

South Ayrshire Council is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Ayrshire property market sets the pace

Property sales across Ayrshire have been driven forward by cash buyers making successful offers and quick sales according to CKD Galbraith, Scotland’s leading independent property consultancy.

The firm is reporting that a high number of successful sales completed during the first quarter of the year has allowed buyers to progress quickly with their next purchase and is resulting in an increasingly stable property chain in the region.

CKD Galbraith’s Ayr office reported that it had sold more than double the number of properties in the first three months of 2016 compared to the same quarter of last year. There has also been a 19% rise in the supply of houses in comparison to the last three months of 2015.

Bob Cherry (pictured above), head of residential sale at the CKD Galbraith’s Ayr office, said: “The general uplift in the region’s property market can be equated to the increased volume of successful sales at the start of the year, which lead in turn to an increase in buyers ready to purchase their next property.

“The boost of active buyers to Ayrshire is also helping to ensure smooth buying and selling processes. The quickest sale during the first quarter of this year took only 12 days to receive a successful offer and is a reflection of the steady movement the market is experiencing.”

The Ayrshire lettings market has also experienced a very positive first quarter according to head of lettings for the region, Marjory Douglas, who added: “The lettings market across Scotland remains very healthy with high level of demand and competition for good quality lets. Demand in Ayrshire during the first quarter of the year increased by 20% compared to the same period last year, in part due to the number of successful sellers renting local property temporarily before finding their next house to buy.” 

CKD Galbraith operates a network of regional offices located throughout the country and figures for the firm as a whole during the first quarter of 2016 demonstrate healthy growth and significant movement of home owners throughout Scotland. The firm has reported a 29% increase in the volume of sales achieved compared to the same period last year, with 36% of buyers coming from across the UK reflecting the wide appeal of the Scottish market.

About CKD Galbraith

CKD Galbraith is an independent property consultancy employing 225 staff in offices across Scotland including Edinburgh, Stirling, Perthshire, Cupar, Inverness, Castle Douglas, Ayr, Elgin, Galashiels, Kelso, and Aberdeen, offering local knowledge, national expertise and enjoying international reach.

The firm is Scotland’s largest and leading rural consultancy managing and providing advice on farm, forestry, land and estate interests on over three million acres.  CKD Galbraith provides the full range of property consulting services across the residential, commercial, rural and renewable energy sectors throughout Scotland and northern England. The partnership also enjoys a successful relationship with its associate firm CKD Kennedy Macpherson.

CKD Galbraith’s Ayr Office is a Founder Member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.