The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Thursday, 7 May 2009


Ayrshire Chamber’s reaction to the Budget

From: Martin Cheyne
Ayrshire Chamber chief executive

THIS year’s Budget statement by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling was one of the most highly anticipated for many years. In the midst of perhaps the most severe recession since the Second World War, Scottish businesses were looking for clear signals of support from the UK Government and evidence that national policy was developing quickly enough to keep pace with the rapidly evolving economic challenges that we are facing.


[Pictured: Martin Cheyne, Ayrshire Chamber chief executive.]

So did the Budget deliver for business? Well, partly. The decision to double first year capital allowances on investment from 20% to 40% this year is great news for businesses who have been hesitating over decisions on new investment and this could nurture the seed corns of future growth. Also welcome is the extension of the scheme to lengthen the period over which businesses can offset current losses against the profits of previous years, whilst the expansion of the trade credit insurance scheme should also assist firms in their day to day operations. In addition, there was an underlying focus on skills and training which was particularly welcome in the current labour market.

However these benefits come at a price, and this will have to be paid in both the short and longer terms. For Scottish businesses, the decision to raise Fuel Duty by 2 pence this September, followed by a further rise next April, is extremely bad news and will add further to business costs at a time when it can least be afforded. Similarly the increase in alcohol duty by 2% has done little to raise the spirits of either the hospitality sector or our food and drink industry.

And what of the bigger picture? Spiralling borrowing and national debt will at some point have to be paid for, raising the prospect of high taxation and reduced Government spending for years, perhaps decades, to come; and while the decision to impose a 50% Income Tax rate on those earning above £150,000 per year will affect only a very few people, the message it sends out about the UK’s attitude to entrepreneurship and success could be a potential impediment to future growth.

Nevertheless we hope that the Chancellor’s forecast of an early return to growth prove to be well founded. Certainly in the Chambers of Commerce’s own Quarterly Business Survey we are beginning to detect some glimmers of hope for the future, with a significant number of our manufacturers predicting an increase in exports by the Spring of 2010. One thing that is for sure is that it will be our businesses that will lead the way out of this recession and restore the Scottish economy to a path of solid growth. We will take the positives from this year’s Budget and move on. There is a challenging task ahead for businesses, but the signs are good and we will work together to ensure that the Scottish economy is stronger and well equipped to take full advantage of the opportunities ahead.

* * *

There are currently 509 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *

Town centre office accommodation in Ayr for sale or let

J&E Shepherd Chartered Surveyors have been instructed to market for sale or lease retail and office accommodation at Boswell House in a busy town centre location in Ayr.


Located on Arthur Street, Boswell House is a mixed use building with flexible retail or office accommodation on the ground floor, The upper floors are suitable for sub-division, with suites from 2150 sq ft, with 17,500 sq ft of space is available in total.

Whilst the property comes with secure private parking for up to 18 cars, a large car park lies adjacent to the property.

Markus Kroner, surveyor at Shepherd’s, said, “Situated at the junction of Arthur Street and Boswell Park in Ayr town centre, Boswell House is set in an area of mixed commercial uses. As such, it is likely to appeal to a variety of occupiers."

The joint agents are Winton Faith.

For further information please contact Markus Kroner tel 01292 267987.

* * *

There are currently 508 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *

Elite Ayrshire Business Circle’s next meeting

THE next meeting of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle will be at 8am on Thursday 21 May at the Clydesdale Bank Financial Solutions Centre in Ayr.


It will feature a presentation by William Skinner & Son, who have been members of the Circle since its inception.

William Skinner & Son are building contractors with their head office in Ayr and a southern division near Cambridge, England.

Operating throughout the UK, much of William Skinner's work is in the retail sector where they work for a broad range of prestigious clients. They also operate in the commercial, leisure, industrial and public sectors.

As part of a programme of diversification and development which builds on and extends their long established range of skills, William Skinner have entered the renewable energy market with emphasis on the design and installation of solar hot water and climate refuge systems. They have good knowledge of the whole renewable energy market and can advise on other systems such as wind generation of electricity. Quite often a combination of systems is advantageous and Skinners can join forces with other specialists to provide a composite solution.

Skinners have also made a very successful entrance into the bespoke and custom built tree house market.

www.williamskinner.co.uk

This promises to be an interesting, informative and entertaining presentation, and there will be the usual ample time for informal networking before and after. A buffet breakfast will be served.

Guests will be made most welcome.

For catering purposes, please e-mail FamePublicity@aol.com to confirm attendance, or contact:

Murdoch MacDonald
Elite Ayrshire Business Circle
Registered Office
Dalblair House
46 Dalblair Road
Ayr KA7 1UQ
Ayrshire, Scotland

Telephone: 01292 281498
Mobile: 07833 667322
Web: www.EliteAyrshire.com

* * *

Wednesday, 6 May 2009


Ayrshire and Arran take the spotlight at Tourism Expo

PUBLIC and private sector partners from Ayrshire and Arran took full advantage of the opportunity to showcase the area during VisitScotland’s annual Expo, which took place at the SECC in Glasgow.


[Pictured: Representatives from Ayrshire and Arran took full advantage of the opportunity to showcase the area during VisitScotland’s annual Expo.]

Expo is Scotland’s flagship business to business event for the travel trade, attracting over 800 buyers from all sectors of the industry including coach tour operators, group travel organisers, conference and incentive buyers, travel agents independent tour operators, wholesalers, and travel trade media specially selected from around the UK and worldwide markets including Europe, USA, Japan, and Australia. Representatives from Iran, Serbia, Pakistan and Turkey were among those from emerging markets attending the show for the first time.

East, North and South Ayrshire Councils came together to work in partnership with tourism operators and visitor attractions from across the area on a custom-built stand designed to highlight the best of Ayrshire and Arran. Leading tourism businesses including Simpsinns, Ayrshire and Arran Visitor Attractions Association, The Park Hotel, VisitArran, Ayr Racecourse, and Scotland’s West Coast Golf Links worked together over the two days to showcase their products and services to key buyers from around the globe, with public sector support staff on hand to provide help and advice on planning group itineraries and packages.

The interest in Ayrshire and Arran’s tourism offer was evident at the show, with the specially commissioned stand drawing a constant stream of enquiries from buyers keen to find out more about all the area has to offer, and other exhibitors admiring the iconic imagery on the stand.

Highlights over the two days included The Open Championship Trophy, the famous claret jug, which was on show on the stand as Jim Mather MSP, Minister for Enterprise, Energy and Tourism, visited the stand to launch Scotland’s West Coast Golf Links, a new collaborative marketing project led by the area’s leading golf courses.

In addition to this a collection of travel trade media representatives were treated to a specially arranged Whisky Masterclass hosted by Euan Mitchell, Managing Director of Isle of Arran Distillers, highlighting the strength of the area’s food and drink producers.

Councillor Hugh Hunter, the Leader of South Ayrshire Council said: “In this year of Homecoming it is particularly important that tourists know about the attractions and activities that are available in Ayrshire. The key themes of Homecoming are Burns, Golf, Food and Heritage and in Ayrshire we can deliver to tourists and local people interesting things to do and see connected with these themes. Partnership work is crucial to boosting tourism, it will bring huge economic benefits to an area that relies heavily on tourism.

Mary Simpson of Ayr Racecourse said: “EXPO offered companies like Ayr Racecourse/Western House Hotel the perfect platform to meet with buyers and decision makers from all over the world.

“The Ayrshire & Arran Stand was a huge success and showed the area in a great light and as one of the most attractive tourism areas in the UK. The stand created a united front for our area.”

Philip Riddle, VisitScotland Chief Executive, said: “The current economic climate is undoubtedly providing challenges to the tourism industry but with these challenges come opportunities. In order to drive the tourism industry forward it is crucial that both the private and public sectors work together to capitalise on the domestic market and a promising European market. It is encouraging to see Ayrshire and Arran’s presence at VisitScotland Expo providing a great example of best practice in joint working. As a pilot project their co-ordinated stand presence looked fantastic, and with public and private partners working together to maximise their market position and promote cross-selling I am sure the area will reap the benefits in the long term.”

Following the outstanding success of this year’s event, ambitious plans are already underway for an even bigger presence, strengthening Ayrshire and Arran’s position as a key tourism destination, when the show returns to Glasgow in April 2010.

For further information please contact Tricia Irving, Senior Enterprise & Tourism Officer, South Ayrshire Council, telephone 01292 616109 or e-mail tricia.irving@south-ayrshire.gov.uk or visit the following websites at: www.comebacktoayrshire.com or www.ayrshire-arran.com

* * *

There are currently 506 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *

Prominent high street retail unit in Prestwick to let

J&E Shepherd Chartered Surveyors is offering a prominent high street retail unit in Prestwick for let.


Located at 88 Main Street, the main retailing area for the town, the ground floor mid-terrace shop has a modern retail frontage with timber framed display windows.

Markus Kroner, surveyor at Shepherd’s, said, “This attractive 1400 sq ft property is situated within a mixed use area including retail, offices and residential properties, with nearby retailers including Tesco, Greggs and Superdrug. It’s prominent location, together with its large sales area, including customer toilets with staff and storage facilities located to the rear, means that it will likely appeal to a variety of retailers.”

Rental offers in excess of £15,000 per annum are invited.

For further information please contact Markus Kroner tel 01292 267987.

* * *

There are currently 505 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *

Tuesday, 5 May 2009


Licensing Board warns on slow uptake of personal licenses

LICENSED premises in South Ayrshire could be in danger of being unable to sell alcohol from 1st September 2009 when new licensing laws come into force.

That’s the warning being issued this week by the South Ayrshire Licensing Board, expressing concern that many people have appeared slow in applying for their personal licences, which could impact on their business.


[Pictured: Councillor Douglas Campbell, Chair of the South Ayrshire Licensing Board, presents a Personal Licence to James Crawford of Dowhill Farm, Girvan when the recently extended farm shop and restaurant were inspected by the Board and their premises licence was finalised.]

From 1st September 2009 the new legislation requires all licensed premises to have a nominated Premises Manager who in turn must hold a personal licence to sell alcohol. The Board expect there to be at least one personal licence holder on duty in licensed premises at all times.

If the Licensing Board has not been advised of the Premises Manager by 31st August 2009, then the premises will not be allowed to open for the sale of alcohol from 1st September.

Earlier this year, Strathclyde Police wrote to all licensees reminding them of the need to obtain a personal licence and then nominate a premises manager. Despite this, the South Ayrshire Licensing Board says that many premises have yet to nominate a premises manager.

Councillor Douglas Campbell, the Licensing Board Chairman said: “Every applicant for a personal licence has to sit a one day course, followed by an exam. If successful, they then need to apply for a personal licence.

Simply sitting the course, or passing the exam is not enough to obtain a personal licence.”

The message is clear – if you want to sell alcohol, you need a licence. Contact the Licensing Board on: 01292 617686 to obtain details of the courses available locally and make sure you’re ready for the new laws from 1st September.

* * *

There are currently 504 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *

Sunday, 3 May 2009


Ayr town centre office accommodation to let

J&E Shepherd Chartered Surveyors is offering town centre office accommodation in Ayr to let.


The 900 sq ft property, at 68 Kyle Street, offers a range of modern self-contained office suites with public car parking to the rear.

Shepherd’s surveyor Markus Kroner said: “The accommodation is located just south of High Street, close by the Ayr Central shopping development, in an area of mixed residential and commercial use, and is likely to appeal to a variety of commercial tenants.”

Comprising a purpose-built self-contained office occupying the upper floor of a three storey terrace block, the property includes a general office, four private offices, a store room and toilets.

Rental offers in excess of £6,750 per annum are invited.

For further information please contact Markus Kroner tel 01292 267987.

* * *

There are currently 503 Ayrshire business stories permanently archived on this site. To locate those of most interest to you, please use the site search facility in the top left hand corner of this page. Type your search term in the white box, then click “SEARCH BLOG”.

* * *