Rothesay regeneration set to continue with National Lottery support

Rothesay regeneration set to continue with National Lottery support

Boat in Rothesay Bay
HLF is to boost support for regeneration in Rothesay on the Isle of Bute

The project aims to make improvements to historic buildings along Rothesay’s front, Victoria Street, creating a better connection between the newly refurbished town centre and the pavilion. 

The project will receive £109,700 development funding and initial support for a full grant of nearly £2m from HLF's Townscape Heritage scheme. HLF has previously supported projects in Rothesay including the regeneration of Rothesay Pavilion.

Councillor Ellen Morton, policy lead for infrastructure, said: "This is fantastic news. With the initial £110,000 we will be developing detailed proposals to continue the fabulous regeneration work in Rothesay. The current programme of work will conclude at the end of March.

"It’s been a huge success; a £4.6m investment (£2.6m of public money which has attracted £2m of private investment) which has helped the owners of 25 historic properties to carry out refurbishment work, in keeping with Rothesay’s Victorian heritage. 

"The area around Guildford Square has seen a major transformation. With the continued support of HLF we are going to build on this and give the people of Rothesay a town they can be proud of. This council’s main focus is on economic growth. We are confident that continued investment in Rothesay historic townscape, including the major project to renovate the pavilion, will have real, tangible benefits for local people, securing construction jobs and bringing people here to spend their money."

The Provost of Argyll and Bute, Councillor Len Scoullar, said: "I am absolutely delighted with this news and would like to thank the team for their hard work and dedication... A key part of the bid was the involvement of the community and I would like to thank the Rothesay Alliance for Action for its contribution and encourage anyone who is interested in the regeneration of our island to come forward with their ideas. 

"This is about regenerating towns from the ground up, having a conversation with our communities, with everyone working together towards the same outcome – a sustainable economic, social and environmental future for our area."

Lucy Casot, Head of HLF Scotland, said: “We are starting to see areas of Rothesay turn a corner and a large part of that is thanks to investment from the National Lottery, from improvements to Guildford Square to the planned transformation of Rothesay Pavilion. Looking after the town’s heritage is an incredibly effective way of supporting the community’s economic life.

"Our research shows that Townscape Heritage schemes can really help turn local economies around, not only by improving how a historic area looks and feels, but by prompting business start-ups and creating new jobs. HLF is looking forward to working with the partner organisations in carrying this momentum forward to ensure a brighter future for Rothesay.”

Notes to editors

  • The financial breakdown for the Rothesay Townscape Heritage project:
    HLF: £1.5m, Historic Environment Scotland: £500,000, Argyll and Bute Council: £550,000,  LEADER: £107,000 ​ (find out more on the LEADER site)
  • To date, HLF has invested £260m regenerating towns that have suffered serious social and economic decline

Further information

  • HLF press office: Elaine Cooper on tel: 020 7591 6143, or Katie Owen on tel: 020 7591 6036 and 07973 613820
  • Argyll and Bute Council: Mark Calder Communications Officer, on tel: 01546 604756 or via email:

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