Report to the Association of Preservation Trusts (Scotland)
10 December 04 Glasgow
The Trust continues to search for further projects and remains in constant contact with the local authorities and enterprise agencies throughout Ayrshire.
The Buildings at Risk Register published for Historic Scotland lists properties under threat in Ayrshire and preliminary inspections have been carried out on a number of the listed properties. This year we have prepared our own web page www.aaht.org and hope to have a site established which can link with other local community pages.
Four new members have been contributing to trust activities, and it is hoped that they will join the Council of Management.
Review of Activities
Our web page www.aaht.org is up and running, and worth a look. Early days yet but the format has been established.
There is even better news from the Customs House at Ardrossan. The local MP Brian Wilson has been helpful and the owners, Clydeport will give us more time before applying for demolition. Efforts are still being made to close the funding gap, which will permit further progress.
Regrettable the Burns Monument in Kilmarnock was burned down on the 19 November, probably due to vandalism. A report and photographs are on www.aaht.org
A working group of Council officers, including the loss adjuster, has been set up to look at the future of the monument. The AAHT agree that it may take some time to consider all the possible alternatives for the replacement monument, what is quite clear however, is that the isolation of the site is not suitable for vacant properties. The working group will no doubt be considering the environment within the park, its influence on the replacement monument and whether this unfortunate event should be taken as an opportunity to make significant changes to the park and its use. The AAHT are interested in a new future for the Burns Monument we had discussions with the Council on the future of the monument in Septenber and we are willing to assist if the Council will permit us to make a contribution
The trust is still in correspondence with East Ayrshire Council, the owners of the properties 12 Strand Street and 1-3 Dunlop Street over agreeing that the AAHT be permitted to take the lead in the refurbishment. The buildings were listed category C(s) in August 02 in recognition of their historical importance and their essential contribution to an early part of the Kilmarnock townscape. The trust has been able to trace a commercial use for the property from about 1820, but they may have been constructed a little earlier. They are part of the old Kilmarnock townscape, in use when Johnnie Walker started selling whisky in 1840 and were on the main route to the station from the town centre when the railway link from Dalry was opened in August 1843. The buildings are typically Ayrshire, in scale with the old street pattern, and an essential part of the history of the town. When restored and in use, the buildings will encourage commercial and other interests to extend from Bank Street and College Wynd into the area. The AAHT intends to restore the property with the main entrance on the gushet elevation. There are downloadable OS maps from the National Library Scotland ( www.nls.uk )which indicate the buildings in 1857-59
We understand that Sornhill House the fine Ayrshire Laird's House has been sold, but no news yet of the owners intentions. No application has been received for Planning Pernission, or listed building consent.