Work finishes on the Old Schoolhouse in Campbeltown

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Published Date: 

21 May 2012 - 17:22

After five years of hard work the Old Schoolhouse in Campbeltown’s Big Kiln Street has re-opened as a bunkhouse providing budget visitor accommodation. It has been one of two key projects for the Campbeltown Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) to get the building back in use with major repair and conservation works and is an excellent example of the community and public sector working together.

It is hoped the bunkhouse will attract new visitors to Campbeltown especially as it is on the route of the Kintyre Way, National Cycling Network and surfing hotspots.

The Old Schoolhouse is the last survivor of a group of four buildings built around 1851 as a direct consequence of the ‘Disruption’ which split the Free Church from the established Church of Scotland. The ‘B’ listed building has been lying empty since the 1980’s and was in an advanced state of disrepair.

The development is thanks to a partnership between Argyll and Bute Council, The Kintyre Amenity Trust, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Strathclyde Building Preservation Trust (SBPT).

The three phase project started in 2007 with an options appraisal funded by Campbeltown Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme (CARS) and the Architectural Heritage Fund. A full development phase then had to be carried out to secure capital funding for the building works. The money came from CARS and Argyll and the Islands LEADER.

In early 2011 the owners of the building, The Kintyre Amenity Trust secured more than £430,000 from Campbeltown THI and the European Regional Development Fund. Work started in May of the same year and almost all of it was carried out by local contractors.

Executive Director of Development and Infrastructure Services, Sandy MacTaggart said: “We are delighted with the high quality of conservation work and very pleased this important landmark building will be retained as part of the Campbeltown built heritage record. There has been an incredible transformation in the appearance of the building and we should be very proud of that.”

For more information on the work on the Old Schoolhouse and the other Campbeltown THI projects, have a look at the Campbeltown THI webpages.