Auchincruive Estate is the former location of the agricultural college developed on the lands of a traditional country estate of great landscape quality and scenic beauty, originally land set out in the eighteenth century. It combines fine historic buildings and …
Auchincruive Estate is the former location of the agricultural college developed on the lands of a traditional country estate of great landscape quality and scenic beauty, originally land set out in the eighteenth century. It combines fine historic buildings and beautiful countryside adjacent to the banks of the River Ayr with educational and research structures. It is located just outside the attractive county town of Ayr, on the west coast of Scotland, about 34 miles south of Glasgow (a 45 minute drive). South Ayrshire includes a coastal network of scenic towns and villages amongst rolling hills and panoramic beach landscapes.
The Burgh of Ayr was founded in the 12th century. Nearby Alloway was the birthplace of the poet Robert Burns. A number of Scotland’s most famous Links golf courses including Turnberry, Royal Troon and Prestwick are close at hand. Ayr Racecourse is home to the Scottish Grand National. There are exceptional yachting facilities at the marinas at Troon, Ardrossan and Largs. There are some delightful river walks along the River Ayr close by, including a deep wooded gorge ascending to a viewpoint known as Wallace’s Seat.
Ayr has a population of about 46,000 (out of a population of 112,000 in South Ayrshire). There are a number of large employers in the area, primarily focused at Prestwick International Airport about 5 miles away. Accessibility to Glasgow is excellent via the M77 motorway, and there are frequent train services.
Ayr has a comprehensive range of facilities and services including excellent shopping and restaurants and good state and private schools. Significant new housing development is taking place in Doonfoot in South Ayr and in Troon. The town benefits from a wealth of public parks, good path networks and wide sandy beaches on the Firth of Clyde coast.
The main part of SRUC’s West of Scotland Campus, Auchincruive Estate offers great potential for residential and commercial development and for other uses encompassing research, education and leisure.
- Planning Permission for the wider Estate was granted in 2012 for a mixed use development including 495 houses.
- 16 existing houses on the estate.
- About 11,380 sq metres of existing and former commercial, educational research and agricultural buildings.
- Part of an important Designed Landscape with historical interest and listed buildings.
The local economy in South Ayrshire is performing well in aerospace and tourism. The area has a stable population with a steady growth in the number of households leading to more demand for housing a trend which is set to continue. In addition proximity to Glasgow and good road and rail links for commuting, provide a further economic boost, and good residential demand.
Neogen, a global biotechnology company have their European base at Auchincruive and there is clearly scope for the development of other businesses of that nature. SRUC will also remain in situ in a more focussed campus. Currently on the estate there are a number of small businesses renting commercial office space. There is continuing demand for this type of space and the other existing buildings could be utilised for this purpose. The Auchincruive Estate offers the opportunity for a mixed use development, taking advantage of its strategic location, attractive setting and existing buildings and businesses.
Auchincruive Estate was originally laid out in 1723 on behalf of the owner, Charles Cathcart. The estate was sold in 1764 to Richard Oswald, a rich merchant who commissioned Robert Adam to embellish the mansion and design the tea house “Oswalds Temple”. The Oswald family sold the estate in 1925 to John Hannah a local farmer who presented the estate 2 years later to the West of Scotland Agricultural College. Over the next 85 years, the College buildings and facilities were developed. In recent years parts of the Estate have been demolished, other parts sold and Neogen have purchased the mansion at Oswald Hall and various College buildings. SRUC have largely relocated from the site, but will retain a presence on neighbouring land.
Planning permission in principle for a mixed use development not exceeding 495 houses, hotel, golf course, leisure and business uses and equestrian centre was granted on 9th July 2012 on the greater Auchincruive Estate of which a significant portion is now being marketed. This permission subsists for 8 years and is expected to lapse in 2020 unless renewed. Since 2012, circumstances have changed and evolved. Parts of the estate are being retained by SRUC and some other parts have been sold. The estate is situated in the greenbelt and is not presently allocated for development under the Adopted Local Development plan. However, the principle of a housing led mixed use redevelopment to ensure the beneficial use of the listed buildings on the estate and to promote take up of previously developed land was accepted previously by the Planning Authority, South Ayrshire Council. A copy of the consented Master Plan together with further information is included in the data room.
Planning consent reference: 09/01416/PPPMN.
A fresh pre application enquiry accompanied by a draft development plan was submitted in 2017 to South Ayrshire Council and will be made available to seriously interested parties.
The Estate includes most of the former campus of the agricultural college. Access is taken from the B743 public road with a secondary entrance also off the B743 at Nellies Gate.
The 117 acres includes a mixture of farmland, mature woodland and parkland with fine views to the south and west towards the River Ayr.
The main part of the former campus is centred on two imposing listed buildings. Gibbs Yard, the original Home Farm of the estate which has various let office suites and cottages, and Wilson Hall, the hall of residence for the college built in 1955. A number of farm and office buildings have been demolished in preparation for the likely future housing development planned for this area. South Ayrshire Council Archives occupy the Watson Peat building, one of the larger remaining buildings. Further offices and buildings opposite Gibbs Yard form Temple Mount and SRUC’s poultry research unit. Oswalds Temple is a folly on the hill behind Temple Mount designed by Robert Adam in 1778. Nearly all the houses and cottages, which are in varying states of repair, are in this part of the estate.
The Nellies Gate entrance provides access to the eastern part of the Estate. Buildings here include the Veterinary laboratories, and the East Lodge. A further 17 acres of parkland comprises part of the Arboretum.
There are various private utility networks on the Estate. Both future development of the estate and the continuing provision of services to existing tenants and adjoining proprietors will require the existing private networks to be replaced with replacement and vested infrastructure. The layout of such infrastructure would require to serve new development and existing users/ properties that will be retained.
An outline of the existing position is as follows.
A 180mm SGN Medium Pressure main runs along the B743 and terminates at a boundary meter at point 2 on the plan. A further portion of SGN Medium Pressure main network runs from the B743 south along the C37 road. Existing buildings are served by the private network which emanates from these points. The existing private main on the Estate will require replacement for adoption purposes in connection with future development of the estate and to ensure that existing users/properties are served via the replacement network.
Available from a 300mm Scottish Water trunk main on the B743 and a 3” distribution main within the C37 road to an existing private network on the estate. The existing private network will require replacement for adoption purposes in connection with future development of the estate and to ensure that existing users/ properties are served via the replacement network.
11kV Scottish Power underground cables on the B743 provides the point of connection to the estate at a private high voltage substation. There is further Scottish Power HV overhead plant that runs through the site along the C37 road. The existing electrical private network is of considerable age and will require replacement for adoption purposes in connection with future development of the estate and to ensure that existing users/properties are served via the replacement network.
BT Openreach has overhead plant and underground ducting throughout the site. Connection to the wider BT network is available at West Lodge and within the B743. Existing private connections will require replacement for adoption purposes in connection with future development of the estate and to ensure that existing users/properties are served via the replacement network.
A combined foul water and surface water gravity drainage system services most of the buildings and those to the south and east drain to a private pumping station to the south of the Estate. The drainage is pumped from there via a 100mm MS Rising Main into a Scottish Water adopted combined sewer within the C37 road before connecting via combined gravity sewers to the B743. Existing private sewers will require replacement for adoption purposes in connection with future development of the estate and to ensure that existing users/ properties are served via the replacement network.
Neogen are the adjoining proprietors of the Dairy Buildings and Oswald Hall and as part of the contractual arrangements in relation to the sale of these properties to them, SRUC is obliged to procure the continued provision of utilities to these properties through the existing private networks within the Estate. The cost of these utility supplies is recharged to Neogen by SRUC. SRUC is entitled to procure the connection of these properties to publicly adopted services when available in the future, at which point these arrangements will cease. As part of the arrangements for the sale of the Estate, SRUC will require the purchaser to take over these contractual arrangements with Neogen. Further details of these arrangements are available in the data room. SRUC also undertook to Neogen to provide certain estate management services in respect of the common parts of the Estate, insofar as SRUC considers appropriate, having regard to the principles of good estate management. An appropriate share of these costs can be recovered from Neogen, subject to an annual cap. Again, SRUC will require a purchaser of the Estate to take over these obligations. Further details are available in the data room.
A similar arrangement is being set up with another prospective adjoining proprietor.
The 30 acre Arboretum is parkland containing 1015 memorial trees sponsored by individuals and groups for various reasons. The western section comprising 17 acres of it is included in the sale. There are incomplete records of these sponsorships which have been deposited with Ayrshire Archives to whom the occasional requests from individuals to identify a particular tree should be directed. The purchasers of the Estate will be obliged to maintain this amenity parkland, permit access from sponsors, and protect the memorial trees as far as it is reasonably practical to do so.
SRUC LEASEBACK AREAS
A number of buildings and areas on the estate will be leased back to SRUC from the date of entry to 31/3/2020 or later. These sites are shown in blue on the plan. The rent will be nominal and SRUC will pay a service charge to cover utilities consumption and rates.
SERVITUDE RIGHTS, RIGHTS OF ACCESS, ETC.
The Estates is burdened with the following principal access and servitude rights:-
- Access rights to the Neogen campus at the Dairy Buildings and Oswald Hall from the main entrance.
- Access rights to the Walled Garden from the Nellies Gate entrance.
In so far as the Sellers are aware, there are no public rights of way or public access rights through the Estate. Appropriate servitude rights will be granted to the pumping station which is situated on land being retained by SRUC.
RATEABLE VALUES AND COUNCIL TAX
See property schedule.
The rateable values of the former SRUC buildings will be reassessed following the sale and be dependent on future use, potential demolition, allowances listings etc. Further information available from the Selling Agents.
ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATES
See property schedule.
Auchincruive is designated as a Designed Landscape “an informal 19th century parkland and woodland landscape overlaying an earlier formal 18th century one”.
Strictly by appointment with the Selling Agents. This is essential because there are biosecurity restrictions on parts of the estate.
A Data Room has been set up which contains a considerable amount of detailed information about the estate. Access will be made available to seriously interested parties.
www.auchincruiveestate.com: with video and further images.
Auchincruive Estate, By Ayr, South Ayrshire, KA6 5AE
Travelling south along the A77 towards Ayr, turn left at the Whitletts roundabout on to the B743 signposted Mauchline. After one mile turn right for SAC Auchincruive and you have arrived at the Estate.