The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

ARPL Architects Ltd complete refurbishment of
artists’ studios in Irvine

Multi-award winning Ayr-based ARPL Architects Ltd have announced the completed refurbishment of artists’ studios on Irvine harbourside for WASPS Artists’ Studios, a charity providing affordable studios to rent around Scotland.

The original courtyard development of 13 studios for artists of various disciplines, built in the 1980s, have had a comprehensive refurbishment and an additional 5 studios created at mezzanine level.

The project has been funded by the Scottish Arts Council, and local contractor James Anderson has carried out the work.

This is one of WASPS’ smaller projects in comparison to the large studio developments such as their new complex at the Briggait in Glasgow, but a very valuable facility for local Ayrshire artists.

The artists who occupy the studios are working to make a living through their creativity and the Scottish Arts Council have been keen to fund this development that increases studio spaces from the existing 13 up to 18 by maximising the existing structure to provide mezzanine studios, and improve the refurbished studio facilities and comfort with a tight construction budget of £110k.

Careful planning and a good working relationship were essential as the construction work went on around the artists who continued occupation of the studios throughout the contract.

Consideration of good daylight and affordable running costs with a practical place to work are important criteria for artists making a living through their creativity. WASPS are pleased to have increased their accommodation available for Ayrshire and have a waiting list for studios.

Artists working in the courtyard studios are very happy to have visitors and show them their work.

Wasps Artists’ Studios is an award-winning charity which provides affordable studio space to support the careers of up to 750 visual artists working in Scotland today.

Now with a 30 year track record, Wasps Artists’ Studios have grown to become one of the largest studio providers in the UK with a network of 17 buildings from the Scottish Borders to the Shetland Islands.

ARPL Architects Ltd

The directors of ARPL Architects Ltd are Patrick Lorimer, Robert Gilliland, Gordon Fleming, and Rebecca Cadie with John Ramsay, Stewart Glendinning and Kenneth Handley as associates.

The ARPL philosophy is to produce buildings to the highest design standards in close consultation with its clients. Designs are innovative and sympathetic to both the immediate and the broader environment in which they are constructed, with an emphasis on sustainability. Each project embraces the unique nature of the client’s needs and the site.

Over the 36 years since Patrick Lorimer established the original practice, ARPL’s status in the profession has grown steadily in line with its position as a medium-sized practice with a reputation for well executed projects. From its base in Ayr the practice carries out projects over a wide geographical area from the Orkneys and the Western Isles to Ireland.

The firm’s project experience covers the fields of housing, churches, schools, commercial projects, private houses, community and arts buildings. Particular expertise has been developed in contemporary sustainable design, specialist conservation works and design for historically sensitive environments.

ARPL’s work has received wide recognition through numerous design and environmental awards presented over the years for its new build and conservation works. Regular success in design competitions adds to the practice portfolio.

ARPL are currently working on new and refurbishment housing for Lochside, Ayr, several church and castle conservation and restoration projects and new community facilities in the South West of Scotland. Appointments for church commissions involve a range of denominations and projects from conservation and repair to extensions and new build. The firm is also involved in country houses and estates and the design of new houses for private owners.

The practice typically handles projects with construction values ranging from £100k through to £15m.

ARPL directors have managed to keep their business stable during the current difficult times, and have a busy current workload.

ARPL Architects Ltd is a founder member of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.


ARPL Architects Ltd
Architects and Quantity Surveyors
11 Wellington Square
Ayr KA7 1EN
Ayrshire, Scotland

Contact: Patrick Lorimer
Tel: 01292 289777
Fax: 01292 288896

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Monday, 23 August 2010

South Ayrshire Council and Kerr & Smith up for award

South Ayrshire Council has made the shortlist for the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE) Service Awards 2010 in the Public/Private Partnership category.

The Council has taken an innovative partnership approach to fleet management by forging a partnership with local company Kerr & Smith.

[Pictured: One of South Ayrshire Council’s vehicles being fully checked and serviced prior to going back out on the road in South Ayrshire.]

The partnership was entered into following an internal review of the Council’s procurement and maintenance of vehicles in 2007. With nearly 1,000 vehicles used by services such as grounds maintenance, roads, schools and home care, the Council’s needs are diverse, and the review showed that the best way forward was a hybrid approach of contract hire and lease arrangements with outsourced maintenance.

Councillor Bill McIntosh, Leader of the Council (pictured above) said: “I am delighted that we have been shortlisted for the APSE Service Awards 2010, and congratulate everyone involved in making it such a success.

“We needed a new modern approach to our fleet management. The Council facilities we had were originally designed to cope with 30 bin lorries, while our throughput had grown to around 400 vehicles. The partnership with Kerr & Smith was the ideal solution.

“The partnership has led to improved service delivery, better performance, cost efficiencies and it is more environmentally friendly.

“As part of our partnership arrangement Kerr & Smith has leased a workshop from the Council, which it uses in addition to its own extensive facilities. As a result, the council now benefits from additional rental income from the company.

”The partnership is working well and is a good example of what can be achieved when you dare to be different and implement a new system.”

The new arrangement proved particularly beneficial during the winter. The Council and Kerr & Smith worked round the clock to ensure essential vehicles were maintained and out on the streets in minimal turnaround times, helping maintain public safety in some of the most challenging weather conditions faced in years.

[Pictured: South Ayrshire Council and Kerr & Smith employees working in partnership to keep Council vehicles well maintained enabling employees to deliver services across South Ayrshire.]

Paul Kerr Service Director at Kerr & Smith said: “We are delighted to be part of an innovative partnership between private and public sector bodies which has brought improved services within the region. It is a testament to our working relationship that during one of the worst winters in 20 years we worked together to ensure their was no break in services.”

In the first 12 months of the partnership, achievements included a younger fleet, reduced carbon footprint, reduced costs, reduced risk, improved safety, more flexible service, increased availability of service, access to modern equipment and practices, and job enrichment for staff.

Councillor Peter Convery, Sustainability and Environment Portfolio Holder (pictured above) said: “Modern, efficient, low emission vehicles are helping us to protect the environment and reduce the Council’s carbon footprint.

“I know first hand how well the partnership is working, having spent time with employees who were gritting our roads during the winter, and saw how well the vehicles were being maintained. Residents of South Ayrshire are benefiting from the flexibility that this partnership is giving us with our vehicles.

“The partnership is a worthy finalist for this award, and I hope it goes on to take the top spot.”

APSE (Association for Public Service Excellence) is a not for profit local government body working with over 300 councils throughout the UK. Promoting excellence in public services, APSE is the foremost specialist in local authority front line services, hosting a network for front line service providers in areas such as waste and refuse collection, parks and environmental services, leisure, school meals, cleaning, housing and building maintenance.

The APSE’S Annual Dinner will take place at the National Seminar and Exhibition in Derry in September 2010, when award presentations will be made.

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