Construction boss has plans to save Glasgow & South Western station hotel

By Hugh Dougherty

AN AYR design and construction company owner has developed plans to save derelict and dangerous Ayr Station Hotel from demolition.

The condition of the building is giving cause for concern, and Robin Ghosh fears for its future. HUGH DOUGHERTY

Robin Ghosh, who has already played a key role in saving Ayr’s Seafield House – the historic home of railway engineer Sir William Arrol – said the Glasgow & South Western Railway-built station hotel should be redeveloped as a new headquarters for South Ayrshire Council.

Robin Ghosh shows off his plans. He is standing in front of an image of Ayr Station Hotel in its heyday. HUGH DOUGHERTY

“What I’m proposing is the council builds a 20-year-life, new build construction in front of the hotel for public access offices with some retail frontage, and refurbishes the interior of the hotel building for its own office use. ScotRail would also benefit from a refurbished and welcoming entrance to the station, and the new use for the hotel would secure the future of the iconic and historic hotel,” said Robin. “

However, the construction chief of the company that has already carried out conservation work on the hotel’s roof and ironwork on behalf of its Malaysian owner, claims the building will have to be demolished within three years if work does not begin shortly.

He said: “One more hard winter will cause further deterioration and the very real danger of falling masonry or complete walls collapsing, threatening the platforms and the railway lines below.

“Unless urgent remedial work is taken soon, the building will have to be demolished to keep railway traffic running through the station to Girvan and Stranraer, and a wonderful, railway-built hotel from the golden age of train travel and railway company hotel development, will be lost for ever.

Read more in Issue 235 of HR – on sale now!

Enjoy more Heritage Railway reading in the four-weekly magazine. Click here to subscribe.