The National Trust for Scotland, which owns around 130 properties and a 73,000ha haul of land, has revealed it is open to redevelopment offers for some of its less-visited sites
The surprise move – primarily aimed at hotel and leisure uses – is intended to help the trust invest in its most popular flagship attractions and balance the books amid funding cuts.
While, frustratingly, there’s no list of potential sites available to lease, the trust says popular tourist attractions are off the table, and properties outside its established visitor offer are the most likely candidates.
So you can definitely forget Culzean Castle and also Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Hill House, which is poised for restoration and a new visitor centre. The Glenfinnan Monument and famous Harry Potter viaduct – both in dire need of a spruce-up – may also be out of bounds.
Instead cast your mind back to that fascinating and remote boarded-up bothy you saw last summer. Or even better, get out there for a fact-finding ‘holiday’; then pitch your discoveries to any developer contacts when you return.
At first glance the Ross-shire settlements of Kintail, Morvich and Torridon, and landholdings at Glen Coe and at Killiecrankie and Dunkeld in Perthsire could yield some opportunities. There’s also Fair Isle and the West Coast Islands of Burg, Canna and Berneray if you’re feeling really adventurous and have a boat.
Meanwhile for the committed urbanites among us, U+I has just been named regeneration partner for Manchester’s mammoth £850 million Mayfield regeneration next to Piccadilly Station.
The 9.8ha city centre project, masterplanned by Studio Egret West, is expected to herald a range of opportunities for architects to deliver individual phases, buildings and meanwhile uses – so grab your portfolio of relevant experience and get in touch now.