The Rothesay Pavilion project, the second of Argyll and Bute Council’s two key regeneration projects on Bute, will see an investment of around £8million in this iconic structure, with renovation work set to begin in 2016. The work is likely to take in the region of 18 months, with the newly renovated pavilion re-opening in mid-2017.
The redeveloped pavilion will give Bute a fabulous, modern facility which will act as a hub for sports, tourism and culture.
Recent survey work has revealed that some sections of the building are in an advanced state of disrepair and are continuing to deteriorate. In order to address these issues and to ensure that the building can be renovated as per the original plan the council is making an additional investment of around £335,000 from its general reserve fund to carry out these emergency works.
This is a significant intervention by the local authority and demonstrates our commitment to this vital regeneration project.
The priority areas for repair are the northern elevation and the north end of the eastern elevation. These areas are exposed to the weather on the seafront and, as such, rain and salt spray have entered open joints and cracks in the cast stone.
Within the cast stones are iron reinforcement bars which have been rusting as the moisture reaches them. The rusting process causes the bars to expand which in turn bursts the stone facings, making these areas of the building unstable, as well as causing a danger to passing members of the public.
To mitigate against this danger to the public, some sections of the building have been fenced off.
Not to repair these areas would lead to further deterioration and cause severe damage to the Category A listed structure, ultimately putting the regeneration project in jeopardy.
The essential repairs have been included as part of the design team tender for the overall regeneration project. The tendering process is around halfway through, with a design team expected to be appointed at the end of the month. Following this, the scope of the required work will be specified, a contract issued and a firm appointed. It is hoped that the repairs will be completed by the spring of 2015.
This is a key part of the council’s investment in Bute and its ambition to stimulate the local economy and will follow on from the hugely successful Townscape Heritage Initiative, which has done fantastic work to restore a number of town centre buildings to their former glory.