Friday, 5 June 2009
Top property experts attend urban regeneration event
KEY property investors and professionals are to attend an event in Edinburgh next week to hear how one Scottish regeneration company is helping the development community through the recession.
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company is holding the event in the Capital on Monday 8 June, to emphasise the innovative and creative role that can be played by urban regeneration companies.
The company has been delighted at the response to the event, with most of those invited responding positively.
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company chief executive Patrick Wiggins (pictured above) said: “We are delighted to hold this event in Edinburgh, as the city is one of the centres for property expertise and investment in Scotland, and the industry here takes a national and international view.
“While we are not immune from the difficult economic times, the fact that our plans are long-term provides us with the ability to focus on important planning and preparation work, whilst helping to progress ongoing plans and developments.
“Because of the unique nature of URCs we can take a creative approach which allows us, for instance, to share both risk and potential profit with development partners through the provision of land rather than the straightforward sale of a site. We have also helped provide essential gap funding, and in another case we have been able to assist through the funding of site enabling work. All of this means that developers working with us can enjoy a higher degree of confidence.”
The meeting, which is by invitation only, takes place at the Bonham Hotel.
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company seeks to develop and revitalise the five towns of Ardrossan, Saltcoats, Stevenston, Kilwinning and Irvine in North Ayrshire through a £100 million, ten year programme to boost the local economy and make the area an attractive and prosperous place to live, work and to visit. The company's partners are North Ayrshire Council, Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government.
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Facelift planned for Bridgegate House in Irvine
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company, in partnership with North Ayrshire Council, is looking to work with appropriately experienced architectural firms on the refurbishment of Bridgegate House in Irvine.
Bridgegate House (pictured above) is a four storey building with 5,000m2 of office space and retail units on the ground floor. Irvine Bay is seeking practices with a successful track record in refurbishing large 1970s buildings.
The refurbishment of the building as a key component of the wider Bridgegate area is one of the priorities of the regeneration plan for Irvine. A summary of the plan can be downloaded from www.irvinebay.co.uk. The proposal is to redevelop the Bridgegate area to strengthen the connections between the Rivergate Centre and the old town.
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company commercial director Omar Elmi said: “The refurbishment of Bridgegate House is an exciting opportunity to really change the face of this area of Irvine.
He continued: “Development activity in the towns is all about creating a more vibrant, dynamic and attractive place to live, work and visit. All of our projects are designed to rejuvenate the area and attract jobs and businesses into the town, and this opportunity would certainly deliver these outcomes.”
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Wednesday, 3 June 2009
William Hill launch Ayr Bronze Cup at Ayr Racecourse
By: Iain Ferguson
A THIRD Class 2 sprint handicap has been added to the three-day Ayr Gold Cup meeting to mark the launch of William Hill’s sponsorship of Scotland’s most prestigious flat fixture.
The William Hill (Ayr) Bronze Cup will be run for the first time on Friday 18 September, with £30,000 in prize money on offer for horses balloted out of both the William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup and the William Hill (Ayr) Silver Cup.
The William Hill (Ayr) Silver Cup will now be run on Saturday 19 September along with the William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup.
[Pictured at the announcement, left to right, Ayr Racecourse managing director Richard Johnstone; William Hill chief executive Ralph Topping; Ayr Racecourse chairman Alan Macdonald; and William Hill director of racing and PR David Hood.]
Announcing details of the sponsorship, which will run for an initial three-year period and will include six races – the three sprints plus the Doonside Cup, Kilkerran Cup and Ayrshire Handicap - William Hill chief executive Ralph Topping said: “We wanted to do something really special to mark our sponsorship of the Ayr Gold Cup, and by introducing a Bronze Cup I believe we have done that.
“To have three top sprints run within 24 hours at Scotland’s premier racecourse is something really special and something we are really proud of. The William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup is Europe’s richest sprint handicap and a race rich in history. It now not only has one but two little brothers.”
Ayr Racecourse chairman Alan Macdonald, speaking at the launch of Ayr’s 2009 Flat Season, welcomed William Hill as the new sponsors of the Gold Cup meeting and said: “It is fitting that in the year of the Homecoming we have attracted a blue chip company to sponsor Scotland’s top flat race.
“The addition of a Bronze Cup is a significant step to underlining the three-day Ayr Gold Cup meeting as one of the UK’s top flat racing fixtures. I am delighted by this news.”
The total prize money for the 2009 William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival will top £600,000 with the 27 runners in the six-furlong Gold Cup chasing a pot of £150,000. The Silver Cup will have a prize fund of £50,000.
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Tuesday, 2 June 2009
GAIETY THEATRE LATEST:
2009 pantomime to go ahead at the Citadel as
search for new Gaiety Theatre owner continues
SOUTH AYRSHIRE COUNCIL has embarked on the next stage of securing the future of the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr and making sure that there is a pantomime production in 2009, albeit at the Citadel.
Following a Community Engagement Event, the Council Steering Group prepared tender documentation in relation to seeking a suitable bidder to take ownership of the Gaiety Theatre. The successful bidder, from the commercial or the not-for-profit sector, will initially work with the Council with the intention of refurbishing and relaunching the venue.
Councillor Margaret Toner, Portfolio Carrier for Economic Development, Tourism & Leisure said: “The Gaiety has an outstanding history and reputation as the premier theatre in south-west Scotland. Officers have been working with members of the community, and others who wish to support the theatre, and they will continue to do so.
“Once a suitable bidder has been selected, we will all work together to secure the future of the Gaiety and re-establish it as the region’s premier theatre. The 584-seat theatre is an asset to the town and will form a vital part of the Ayr Renaissance regeneration initiative.
“Attending a pantomime is an annual event that is enjoyed by many people. I am delighted to be able to announce that Council officers have also put in place a tendering exercise to find a company to produce a pantomime this year that will be performed in the Citadel. Pantomimes are an important community event, so I am really pleased that the pantomime will take place in the Citadel from Thursday 3 December 2009 to Saturday 26 December 2009.”
[Pictured: The cast of the 2008 pantomime "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr.]
Expressions of interest in taking ownership of the Gaiety Theatre must be received by 12 noon on Friday 12 June 2009 and should be e-mailed to Roddy MacDonald, Head of Community Development at email@example.com for an information pack and application guidance.
Submissions to tender to produce the pantomime must be received by 12 noon on Tuesday 7 July 2009. Anyone who is interested in producing the pantomime is advised to visit the venue in advance of submitting a tender, as there will be a requirement to give detailed consideration of how the sports hall will be converted to a theatre for the period of the pantomime production. Tender documentation is available to download at www.publiccontractsscotland.gov.uk, however a hard copy is available on request. Further information can be obtained from Paul Wilson, Principal Officer Leisure and Cultural Services on 01292 612215.
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Monday, 1 June 2009
New library opened in Alloway Ayrshire
Alloway Library in Ayrshire has been officially opened by Councillor Margaret Toner, Depute Leader of South Ayrshire Council. The occasion was celebrated with a tea party for customers and invited guests.
[Pictured back row left to right: Councillor Peter Convery, South Ayrshire Council chief executive David Anderson, head of community development Roddy MacDonald. Middle row: Duncan Gunn of Carrilion, Councillor Elaine Little, acting libraries manager Jean Inness, Alloway library assistant Barbara Mossie, Alloway Library assistant in charge Dorothy Connell, David Broad of MITIE. Seated: Councillor Margaret Toner, Dr John Cairney. CLICK ON ANY IMAGE TO VIEW / DOWNLOAD FULL-SIZE VERSION.]
Acting libraries manager Jean Inness thanked various people involved in the successful completion of the project.
The actor Dr John Cairney, world-famous for his portrayal of Robert Burns, entertained guests with anecdotes about his life and performances of Burns’ poetry, before signing copies of a new “Kilmarnock” edition of Burns poetry in which he has written the foreword.
Councillor Toner said: “I am absolutely delighted to open the library in the heart of Robert Burns’ birthplace and I am even more pleased that so many people are already making use of this wonderful facility.
“The building is light, modern and fully equipped with the latest technology, so I am confident that Alloway library will become an excellent resource for the school, local residents and for visitors to the area.
“Robert Burns himself would have been thrilled to know that one day his own works would be available from a library that is just a stone’s throw from where he was born.”
The new library has been operating since March 2009 and has proved to be very popular, judging by the large numbers of people who have flocked to use it.
To coincide with the opening, a new photographic exhibition by Douglas Inness covering events in Ayr and Alloway during the Homecoming Weekend of 25-26 January was launched.
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