Trust will breathe new life into Brodick villa

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A near derelict 106-year old villa in Brodick will be given a new lease of life if building plans are approved by North Ayrshire planning chiefs.

Built in 1913 in the Arran estate style, Sylvania is a C listed, two storey, three bay sandstone villa located in Cladach immediately adjacent to Brodick Castle and Country Park belongs to the National Trust for Scotland.

In a supporting statement requesting planning permission to upgrade the fire resilience and detection features, as well as to allow multiple occupancy, the Trust state that this would ‘ensure part of the Brodick estate heritage is restored and reduce the risk associated with an unoccupied building.’

The fire resilience features which would include upgrading existing doors to fire doors and installing a fire detection system is particularly relevant owing to the fact that the building has suffered from vandalism and an arson attack in the past.

Repairs to the roof and structure of the building have been carried out however the property remains in a poor state of repair and would require renovation. According to plans submitted to planning officials the restoration works will include repairs to plaster walls and ceilings, and would also include a  partial interior decoration.

Designated as a house of special interest by Historic Environment Scotland who described its design as ‘clearly intended to impart status and authority’. The building would of been one of the improvements to the estate carried our for Lady Mary Douglas-Hamilton who inherited the estate in 1895 and married the 6th Duke of Montrose in 1906.

Originally the head factor’s house it passed to the NTS along with Brodick Castle and various ancillary buildings in 1958 when it became the head gardener’s house for the estate.

Having originally been built to house staff, the NTS have noted that it would continue to house staff if permission were granted for multiple occupancy.

The application is currently under consideration by North Ayrshire planning department.


Sylvania is an attractive sandstone building with overhanging eaves, timber sash and case windows and a slate roof but requires extensive upgrading. 01_B19Sylvania01