has been offered to local community groups in Maybole by
the trustees of Cassillis Estate.
Recently, a presentation was made Councillor Andy Hill,
leader of South Ayrshire Council, Cathy Jamieson MSP, Sandra Osborne MP,
Scottish Enterprise Ayrshire, local voluntary groups and potential funders.
The presentation was made by David Kiltie, chairman of
May-Tag Ltd and Maybole Community Council, and Peter Walker, of Maybole
Resource Centre, who said that the estate trustees are willing to pass
Maybole Castle to the community, provided a partnership company involving
the local community council, historical society, community association,
business association and May-Tag Ltd can be formed.
The aim would be to establish a local heritage centre, a
family history centre, a natural history centre, an arts & craft studio, a
café, an education facility as well as a tourist information point. It is
also hoped that the castle can be used for functions and meetings with the
grounds restored to an 18th century kitchen garden.
May-Tag has been offered a £450,000 grant from Historic
Scotland for work on the castle roof, also a £5,000 grant from Awards for
All towards architects’ costs. Discussions are also taking place with the
Heritage Lottery Fund for further funding of the project.
Also in partnership with Cassillis estate, a Social
Enterprise project is planned involving a 600 acre woodlands scheme, which
will have a woodchip project, woodland management, craft centre, hedging,
dry stone dyke building, and charcoal projects which will offer new
employment and training and opportunities. The partnerships are also
investigating a community-composting scheme with a local commercial
At the presentation Cathy Jamieson said she whole-heartedly
supports this major project in Maybole, adding, “I
was excited to learn of May-Tag's innovative proposals for Maybole Castle.
There are real opportunities to make the most of Maybole's most famous
landmark and I am delighted to offer my support for this project which
could help to sustain and preserve the future of the castle. May Tag has
been investigating a range of possible options for the castle and I am
certainly keen to continue working with community organisations, South
Ayrshire Council and local businesses to help make this a reality.”
Leader of South Ayrshire Council Andy Hill said the council
would do all it could to assist and advise on issues that this project may
Alan Martin of Maybole District & Business Association said
that the innovative project would have a major impact on bringing tourist
and visitors to the town, which would bring a benefit to the whole
Sandra Osborne MP said, “I am delighted that this exciting
initiative has been taken to upgrade the castle and at the same time
provide local employment. Having had a tour of the castle by the
Historical Society I can see for myself the great potential for
development and it was also good to see the commitment to everyone working
together to achieve a good outcome for Maybole. The idea has my full
support although I recognise it will be hard work for everyone involved.”