I GATHER one Malaysian owner has sold the Station Hotel to another one. 

We are left to wonder if it is a real new owner and even if it is, will an iconic part of our town be cared for as it ought to be. 

Will it just be neglected? 

We could be very lucky but it is a risk.

At the moment a local group have formed the Ayr Station Hotel Community Action Group. 

We had a large public meeting particularly considering the short notice. 
We wrote to the Scottish Government who told us to deal directly with South Ayrshire Council so we sent a copy of their reply to every councillor, all 28.

The Council Leader and Deputy are meeting six of the Committee on Tuesday, June 12.

We are looking at ideas and going with costings and options. 
For instance if it was split could the main part form a bijoux hotel with the extra part made into flats for a cooperative housing complex. 

We were told housing was not practical. 

However we have professional people on our committee have done research, and feel that there are prospects.

The town may have to compulsory purchase and asset transfer to a community partnership or to a hotel company if it were to be a bijoux hotel.

Any practical way of properly using the buildings and allowing Ayr people to see it and use would suit us, so long as the building is properly conserved. 

If the hotel is sold to unscrupulous speculators it may be too far down the line next time.

If the Engineer’s Report is open to the hotel being conserved, and if the new owner is not going to do the right thing by the town and the hotel, we should act ourselves to ensure that the hotel stays and develops for the town.

We will be having publicity, meetings and political pressure at all levels if we have to. 

It will not necessarily take any more government money to make the hotel right than to build a new steel and glass Ayr station. 

Of course you could spend a lot more if were restored it to the level of Glasgow City Chambers, ex Stock Exchange, which was how it was built.

We will be back in touch.

Esther Clark, 
Interim Chair
Ayr Station Hotel Community