Progressing its restoration of Taymouth Castle’s principal rooms, Meteor Property Fund, as owners of the heritage asset in Kenmore, has advanced with the work on an “at risk/good faith” basis, prior to receiving anticipated planning permission for its amended proposals for the 450 acre estate.

The work is permitted under the existing planning consent and much of it has already been completed in the hope that Meteor’s new proposals will receive permission when they go before the Perth & Kinross Planning Committee.

Internal & External Works
altThe eight Principal Rooms are among the most historically important parts of the castle. Elaborately decorated in Victorian gothic style, with rich carvings, gilded ceilings, ornate panelling and delicate plasterwork, the first floor rooms include the Chinese Gallery and Lounge, Library, Banner Hall and Baron’s Hall.

The rooms are undergoing a complete restoration by a range of experts, all undertaken in close consultation with P&K Council and Historic Scotland.

Much of the delicate specialist work has already finished. Dumfries-based Ian Gracie Plastering Ltd has completed the rendering of the West Wing. In addition, MacKay Decorators is currently finalising the restoration work to the ornate ceiling mouldings and McDermott Group is well underway with installing a new heating system – both companies are based in Perth.

altThe restoration of the main tower of the castle has been commenced.Following the installation of the sprinkler system in May, work will continue on the final layout and design. In order to carry out this work, six new joiners have recently been appointed.

Meteor is also reinstating a number of unique fixtures, lighting and pieces of furniture that had been removed for specialist restoration and safekeeping. These have been purchased from the administrator and/or tracked down to other ownerships and are being carefully stored in readiness for completion of the work.

Externally, Marici Brothers of Aberfeldy have completed restoration of the external mouldings around the front entrance of the castle. This includes recreating the ornate ceiling of the porch, which had become almost completely destroyed over time. In addition, improvement works to the landscaping at the front of the castle are being undertaken to create a more attractive setting.

Repair work has also been carried out to the Chinese Bridge and it has been reopened to the public. Further restoration work is programmed, which will restore it to its former glory.

Good Faith Commitment
Martin Mortimer, Development Manager at Meteor, commented: “We have always said that the restoration of the castle was of paramount importance to us. The work that we have carried out - and continue to progress - demonstrates our commitment to ensuring that a restored and operational castle is a fundamental part of our plans.

“Until planning consent is granted, we have no guarantee that we will be able to deliver our revised scheme, however, we have pressed ahead with the restoration, aware of the castle’s significance.

“Once permission is granted, hopefully in the very near future, we will be able to progress with the restoration of the rest of the castle building at the same time as we start to develop the proposed estate properties and other elements of the project.”

Meteor Property Fund is awaiting approval for a new planning application – a variation on the approved scheme - that was submitted earlier this year (2013).

Its plans propose to convert the castle into a top of the range, luxury hotel as well as adding new leisure facilities including spas, a restaurant and equestrian centre. There are also plans to restore the existing James Braid-designed golf course. To fund the restoration works, Meteor is seeking consent to build additional luxury estate properties on the estate.

 

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