The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Friday, 24 October 2014

Learning Shop in Ayr re-opens

South Ayrshire Council’s Learning Shop – an adult learning resource centre at New Bridge Street in Ayr – has been officially re-opened by Councillor Margaret Toner, Portfolio Holder for Lifelong Learning, after a comprehensive refurbishment.

[Pictured: Councillor Margaret Toner, Portfolio Holder for Lifelong Learning (centre) cuts the celebration cake to formally re-open the Learning Shop in Ayr. Also pictured are current and former learners, volunteer tutors, staff and local Councillors.]

The Learning Shop opened in 2003, creating a dedicated centre to co-ordinate literacy provision throughout South Ayrshire and basing it in a town centre shop helped make it more convenient and visible to learners.

Cutting the ribbon to officially re-open the Shop, Councillor Toner said: “I’m absolutely delighted to re-open this excellent service and it’s a perfect opportunity to raise awareness of the Adult Literacy team and the superb work they do.

“In the eleven years since the Learning Shop first opened, our team has helped thousands of people with reading, writing, spelling and number skills, all delivered at a time and pace to suit their needs.

“Our team is brilliantly supported by another team of over 100 volunteer tutors – people who give up their time to be trained to support other adults in their learning – and the success of the Learning Shop is a direct reflection of their dedication and commitment to others.”

This year looks set to be one of the busiest ever for the Learning Shop, with more than 150 students receiving literacy support and over 100 foreign students getting help to improve their English language skills. 

Nearly two hundred people will learn how to use a computer and more than fifty new volunteers will complete the tutor training course.

The team also works with partner organisations to support literacy projects in the community, with outreach work in Troon, Prestwick, Maybole and Girvan and still maintains strong links with the local college and other learning providers.

Councillor Toner added: “The team has also worked with those partners to deliver 15 literacy projects to over 400 learners, so it really has become the focal point in supporting the people of South Ayrshire along their lifelong learning journey.”

“I’d encourage anyone interested in improving their reading, writing, number or computer skills to drop in for a quick chat, or to lift the phone for some friendly advice, which could turn out to be life changing.”

The Learning Shop is on the corner of New Bridge Street, Ayr and can be contacted on 01292 263304 – or why not drop in for a friendly chat?

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

Ayrshire property market maintains momentum

Despite the uncertainty caused by the Scottish referendum during the summer months, leading property consultants CKD Galbraith have released new statistics showing that the property market maintained momentum and interest. 

[Pictured: Bob Cherry, partner and head of 
residential in CKD Galbraith’s Ayr office.]

The third quarter of 2014 (July-September) saw property sales i n Ayr remain consistently high compared to the previous quarter and the same quarter in 2013, as well as a significant increase in the number of property viewings since quarter two of 2014 - according to research conducted by the firm’s office at Killoch Place in Ayr town centre.

CKD Galbraith Ayr statistics from quarter three of 2014 show:-

• Viewings have risen by 48 per cent since the last quarter
• There has been a 14 per cent rise in the number of registered buyers since the previous quarter
• Property in the area has sold, on average, nearly a month quicker than the previous quarter

Bob Cherry, partner and head of residential in CKD Galbraith’s Ayr office, said: “Despite supply and demand being mixed across the UK as a whole, momentum in terms of sales and prices has remained steady in Ayr. Buyer interest remains firm in the Ayrshire region as well, bucking the trend elsewhere in the UK. We expected a slowdown in the market in the run up to the referendum but the region has shown a good degree of resilience”

There were also positive signs in the Ayrshire lettings sector. 

Joyce Smart (pictured above) of CKD Galbraith’s lettings department in Ayr, said: “We are greatly encouraged by our findings for the third quarter of this year, indicating continued strength in the Ayrshire rental sector. There has been an encouraging increase of 18 per cent in the number of properties let this quarter whilst the supply of high quality lets and viewing figures have remained steady. Demand is still outstripping supply and the average time taken to secure tenants has decreased once again in the third quarter.”

CKD Galbraith operates a network of regional offices located throughout the country and has enjoyed good growth over the last year, which it expects to continue into the final quarter of 2014. 

CKD Galbraith 
7 Killoch Place 
Ayr KA7 2EA 
Ayrshire, Scotland 

Contact: R A Cherry BSc MRICS 
Tel: 01292 268181 
Fax: 01292 292300 

About CKD Galbraith 

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, 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.

To find out more about CKD Galbraith visit

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

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Construction workloads reach seven year high in Scotland

Private and public housing and private commercial construction activity drove a record workload in Q3, according to the RICS UK Construction Market Survey – the highest recorded since 2007. 

Despite skills shortage concerns for quantity surveyors rising for the second consecutive quarter (now standing at a net balance of 42%) commercial workloads continue to make a strong recovery throughout Scotland, with 39% more surveyors reporting a rise in activity (up from a net balance of 26% in Q2). This compares to a workload decline over the same quarter in 2012 (net balance of -9%). 

In Scotland, there were positive signs for workloads in the public housing sector, with a net balance of 22% of surveyors reporting a growth in construction activity during Q3, the sharpest increase in since 2005. Workloads in the private housing sector also grew robustly across all parts of the UK with the London/South East region seeing the strongest growth.

However, while still positive, workloads in infrastructure saw much more balanced growth with 27% more surveyors seeing activity levels rise across Scotland. Significantly for Northern Ireland, for the fourth consecutive quarter, infrastructure and private industrial sector growth in Northern Ireland remained flat (0% net balance).   

Across the whole of the UK, the main factors which were found to be limiting building activity were a shortage of labour, followed by concerns over finance and shortage of materials (both a net balance of 58%) followed by planning and regulation factors (a net balance of 51%). In particular, demand for brick layers grew significantly on the previous quarter, with a net balance of 71% of respondents now saying that they are in great demand (compared to 59% in Q2 2014). 

However, despite the concerns, the strength and breadth of the growth that is being reported across Scotland is promising and feeding expectations for further growth over the coming year. As a result, 43% more surveyors expect to see profits increase, rather than decrease, and 38% of respondents expect to take on more people in response to the rising workloads during the next 12 months. 

Commentating on the data, Sarah Speirs, Director RICS Scotland said: “Unprecedented housing demand and the bounce back from a very deep recession are translating into prominent growth in workloads throughout Scotland. With a lack of housing supply identified in the recent Scottish Housing Commission reports, it is encouraging to see a growth in construction activity across housing sectors. 

“Of course factors impacting construction activity, such as skill shortages and material shortages, must be addressed if we are to avoid capacity constraints, but it is equally important that the underlying framework for effective planning and delivery of projects is in place to ensure long-term construction growth that is evenly spread across the country.”

Despite the positive figures, caution remains within the industry as the recovery begins to take hold.

David Taylor FRICS, CBA QS Ltd, Glasgow commented: “There is an ever increasing air of confidence but market participants still seem reluctant to commit to some of the larger projects. We are sensing caution on funding even though the uncertainty which was present before the referendum has dissipated.”

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

CKD Galbraith offer a contemporary country property in Ayrshire with practical equestrian facilities

Leading Scottish property consultancy CKD Galbraith is offering for sale Number 6 Barlosh Court, Sinclairston, Ayrshire, a charming property enjoying an elevated south facing position overlooking the surrounding countryside.  

Forming part of a small courtyard development created from a former farm steading, Barlosh Court lies in the heart of rural Ayrshire, yet is just over 10 miles from Ayr town centre.

The property offers deceptively spacious accommodation over two levels and a good level of specification.  

The living room and dining room take full advantage of the surrounding views with double aspect windows and the breakfasting kitchen offers a range of modern units with excellent storage and a range of integrated appliances.  

Three bedrooms are located on the first floor – all have en suite facilities and in addition the master bedroom has a walk-in wardrobe.

The gardens and land of Barlosh Court are perhaps of equal importance as the house itself. The gardens are practically laid out with an enclosed lawn, sheltered patio and raised beds used for growing fruit bushes and vegetables. In addition there is a greenhouse. Private parking and additional visitor parking spaces are also provided.

The present owners of number 6 have added excellent equestrian facilities including three timber framed stables, a tack room and a hay store.  All are supplied with power and water. There is also a floodlit outdoor arena which overlooks the paddock of approximately 7 acres.

Number 6 Barlosh Court is a contemporary house surrounded by rural farmland with excellent bespoke equestrian facilities.

Offers Over £330,000 are being sought.

PDF available on

For further information contact: Fiona Fulton (pictured above) at:

CKD Galbraith 
7 Killoch Place 
Ayr KA7 2EA 
Ayrshire, Scotland 

D/L Tel: 01292 292535
Switchboard:  01292 268181  
Fax: 01292 292300 

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