The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Saturday, 30 August 2014

CKD Galbraith’s West Coast Wonder

Scotland’s leading property consultancy CKD Galbraith has brought a truly exquisite former gate lodge with generous grounds and loch frontage to the west coast property market.

West Lodge presents a rare opportunity to acquire a charming one bedroom property and about 5.14 hectares (12.7 acres) of unspoilt land for sale as a whole or in four lots with outline planning consent for 3 individual house plots. 

West lodge is a former gate lodge to Roshven House, situated on the spectacular Moidart Peninsula between the Road to the Isles of Eigg, Rum and Muck, and Ardnamurchan. The property is nestled between the mountains and sea in a magical hamlet that is sure to enchant any potential buyers. 

The cottage, dating from around 1860, is thought to be designed by the original owner of Roshven House, Jemima Blackburn, a respected Victorian water colourist who is certain to have drawn inspiration from the cottage’s surroundings. The three rounded gables of the lodge cottage have created a unique and endearing property while its immaculately presented interior, featuring an open plan sitting room/dining room, double bedroom and bathroom, provides extremely comfortable accommodation. 

Moidart Peninsula forms part of the Lochaber Geopark, created to protect and improve awareness of the beautiful landscape, diverse habitats and protected wildlife. Its coastline is famous for its white sandy beaches and clear blue waters, offering brilliant sailing and kayaking opportunities.

The small village of Glenuig is about 3 miles away and has a small shop, village hall, modern inn and public jetty, while Lochailort, about 5 miles away has a welcoming inn, post office, and a railway station with services to Glasgow and connections to Edinburgh and London. 

Phiddy Robertson, handling the sale for CKD Galbraith, said: “West Lodge is a quaint property with a magical atmosphere and offers true “wow-factor”. The sale not only offers the chance to purchase the lovely gate lodge itself but give buyers a development opportunity to build houses on the separately available lots, each with loch frontage and stony beach.

“This is a completely unspoilt and spectacular part of the UK with beautiful landscapes and a strong community feel that draws buyers in; I expect there to be strong interest in West Lodge for this reason so would recommend early viewings.”

West Lodge is available for sale as a whole at offers over £790,000. For further information please contact CKD Galbraith’s Inverness office on 01463 224343.

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

The firm is Scotland’s largest and leading rural consultancy managing in excess of 1 million acres of land across the country.

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 in London, CKD Kennedy Macpherson.

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

Demand for housing remains strong in Scotland

Demand for housing grows as new report calls for creation 
of new towns to meet needs of Scotland’s housing market.

Demand for new homes grew in July, with a net balance of 52% of chartered surveyors reporting a growth in new buyer enquiries, according to the July RICS Residential Market Survey. 

The number of homes coming onto the market increased in July, with 8% of respondents reporting an increase in new instructions, while on the demand side, Scotland bucked the national trend with 52% more respondents reporting an increase in enquiries (up from 33% in June). 

This continuing supply and demand imbalance is creating more optimism in the Scottish market compared to the rest of the UK. In July, 42% more respondents saw prices rise over the month and looking ahead, 32% of respondents expect house prices to increase over the next three months and 12 months expectations are for prices to rise by 3.3%. 

In London, both sales and new buyer demand fell more sharply than elsewhere, with enquiries falling at their fastest rate since April 2008 and a net balance of 10% more respondents reporting an increase in prices (down from 30% in June).

Sarah Speirs, Director RICS Scotland, said: “The housing market in Scotland continues to show an imbalance between supply and demand in Scotland and this impact prices. The independent Scottish Housing Commission published its recommendations to help improve Scotland’s housing market, with emphasis on establishing a sufficient quantity and quality of land for housing as a central recommendation. 

“With demand from new buyers at the highest rate since December 2013 and fewer properties coming onto the market, there is certainly the need for investment in regeneration and creation of new stock in order to keep prices at a sustainable level.”

Graham Tonner, Graham + Sibbald, Dundee, commented: “Sale prices in Tayside have been strong, however, there is still not enough stock coming to the market. More sales are at Home Report value compared to the last few years.”

Posted by the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Robbie Savage returns to William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival

By: Iain Ferguson

TELEVISION pundit Robbie Savage is returning to Ayr Racecourse next month as a special guest at the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival.

[Pictured: Robbie Savage enjoying the William Hill 
Ayr Gold Cup Festival at Ayr Racecourse last year.]

On Thursday 18 September the BBC Match of the Day star will make the draw for the feature race of the week - William Hill Ayr Gold Cup which will be run on Saturday 20 September. 

And on the middle day of the three day Festival he will be a judge for the Best Dressed Lady competition on Ladies' Day.

The former footballer, who is also a sporting ambassador for William Hill, performed similar duties last year and Racecourse chiefs are looking forward to welcoming him back.

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

Macfarlane Labels presses ahead

Macfarlane Labels has underpinned its commitment to efficiency and the environment with the installation of a new, state of the art printing press at its Kilmarnock facility.

The company has invested £650,000 in a new UV flexo self-adhesive label press which has a number of important features including: greater capacity; faster run speeds; less waste and quicker changeovers. 

The creation of less waste material and its reduced power consumption will also further improve Macfarlane Labels’ environmental credentials. 

The FA4* press, manufactured by industry leader, Nilpeter, is forecast to increase Macfarlane Labels’ capacity from its current 2 billion labels a year to around 2.2 billion. The new press joins Macfarlane’s existing modern fleet, which comprises eight Nilpeter presses at the company’s Kilmarnock facility. This is the company’s third FA4 servo drive press.

Nilpeter flew a specialist into Scotland from Denmark to provide on-site training for Macfarlane’s operators of the 17 metre long press, which was installed in earlier in August and is now fully operational.

Derek Easson, Macfarlane Labels’ Commercial Director, said: “We’re committed to continual investment in our labels business to ensure that our customers benefit from the latest technology.  Our new press is evidence of this and I’m confident that it will help us to further improve the service and quality that we can provide.”

Macfarlane Group PLC is a UK-based group of companies focused on packaging-related activities.

Printing more than 1.8 billion labels every year, Macfarlane Labels is Scotland’s largest labels producer. Headquartered in Kilmarnock, the company also has a manufacturing operation in Newmountkennedy in Ireland, and employs 114 people supplying 350 customers in the UK, Ireland, Europe, US and Canada.

In addition to the large volume of self-adhesive labelling the company produces for the FMCG sector (including food, health & beauty, household products, beverages and pharmaceuticals), Macfarlane Labels specialise in a range of resealable labels under the Reseal-it® brand.

The Packaging Distribution business is the leading UK distributor of a comprehensive range of packaging products.  

The Manufacturing Operations comprise two businesses, the manufacture of transit packaging and the manufacture of self-adhesive and re-sealable labels.  

Headquartered in Glasgow, Scotland, Macfarlane Group employs 700 people at 22 sites, principally in the UK and Ireland, servicing 20,000+ customers in the UK, Europe and the USA across a wide range of sectors including: consumer goods; logistics; electronics; food manufacturing and retailing; internet and mail order.

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Ayrshire Smiles all round as 5-Star visitor attraction gets 100%

There are big smiles all round at Hunterston B power station visitor centre after its entire team of guides received their certificates for passing the Ayrshire Smiles service excellence training course – the first business with 100% of its customer-facing staff to complete Ayrshire Smiles.      

The team of tour guides (pictured above) show visitors around EDF Energy’s Hunterston B power station and explain the fascinating workings of the station. Welcoming people from the local area and much further afield on a daily basis to the visitor centre, which has a 5-Star rating by VisitScotland, the guides decided to rise to the challenge of enhancing their already excellent customer services skills.      

Ayrshire Smiles mixes customer service training with destination knowledge and is designed to inspire people employed within tourism and hospitality-related businesses to share their passion for Ayrshire and give a genuine warm welcome to visitors.

It builds on tried and tested destination and service delivery courses and helps create a consistent and quality approach to customer service.

Speaking about the training, Valerie Poyser, Hunterston B power station visitor centre co-ordinator said: “All our guides found the training really very worthwhile to do and it only took just over a couple of hours to complete online. We were tested on our knowledge of other attractions in the local area and on the best way to deal with customers. I would recommend the training to other Ayrshire organisations as it really is a very useful tool.”

Moira Birtwistle, member of the Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Leadership Group said: “We are delighted to have been involved in the development of the Ayrshire Smiles programme, which empowers businesses to enhance the quality and delivery of excellent service to their visitors. 

“The warmth of welcome and customer care through excellent product knowledge are among the most important factors influencing how an area is perceived. By exceeding expectations, the area can benefit from visitors returning and also sharing their enjoyment of all that Ayrshire and Arran has to offer.”

Ayrshire Smiles online training is available free of charge. Individuals can register and businesses can find out more about using the course as part of their staff training at 

The initiative was developed by Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Team with a wide variety of industry partners. The initiative supports the aims and ambitions of the Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Strategy 2012-2017 and recognises the importance that the people of Ayrshire & Arran and the service they deliver make to the overall visitor experience.

The Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Team is funded by the three Ayrshire local authorities (East, North and South Ayrshire Councils).

The team works with the industry under the guidance of the Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Leadership Group to support the delivery and aims of the Ayrshire & Arran Tourism Strategy 2012-2017 (which targets growth of visitor numbers, spend and employment). 

Tourism is very important to the economy of Ayrshire & Arran, generating £348 million of revenue per year, from some 3.5 million visitors. This directly supports almost 9,000 jobs. 

The region has tremendous strengths that offer the visitor a range of great experiences, spanning rural, coastal, historic and built environments; world class golf, sailing, culture and heritage; high quality food, drink and hospitality; beautiful islands, marine and countryside. 

There is a dedicated website for Ayrshire Smiles – 

Find out more about Ayrshire & Arran Tourism at 

Hunterston B power station visitor centre is open from Monday to Friday between 9am and 4pm or at weekends between 10am and 4pm. If you would like a plant tour, book in advance on 01294 826008 or you can e-mail

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