Renovation work approved for historic walled garden in Kirkcaldy park

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Plans to renovate a historic walled garden in Kirkcaldy have been given the go-ahead by councillors.

Rural Skills Scotland Ltd (RSS) has secured permission to get started after submitting a planning permission and listed building consent to renovate the existing buildings within Ravenscraig Nursery Gardens which date back some 200 years.

The walled garden is closely associated with the development of Dysart House as the home of the Sinclairs, and following the transfer of ownership, by Sir Michael Nairn. It survives today in virtually unchanged uses, form and character.

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It operated as Fife Council’s plant nursery from 1935 until 2005, and is currently leased to Kirkcaldy Community Gardens & Allotments (KCGA), with Greener Kirkcaldy sub-letting part.

The entrance to the walled garden at Ravenscraig Park (Pic: Google Maps)The entrance to the walled garden at Ravenscraig Park (Pic: Google Maps)
The entrance to the walled garden at Ravenscraig Park (Pic: Google Maps)

The work will focus on buildings leased to RSS, a national not-for-profit organisation, and iill see work started this Spring or summer to carry out a host of renovations to the walls, windows, lintels and interiors.

RSS has also proposed putting general power and lighting into all three buildings while asbestos would be professionally removed, and doors and windows from all three buildings would be renewed and renovated. Stonework and masonry would be repaired and rectified where necessary and the stonework on buildings two and three would be cleaned to remove stains, dirt and vegetation.

Building three would see the most serious renovation works. Rural Skills has proposed fitting the building out for staff facilities - including toilets, a canteen, an office and a training room. It would be heated with radiators and provided with hot water for basins and sinks. Meanwhile, building one and two would be repaired and renewed as workshops.

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The move comes a year after Kirkcaldy councillors agreed to sink £14,000 into the former house in the walled garden which is now an office and training base for RSS which has carried out major renovations to the long abandoned building.

Initially set up in the Levenmouth area, RSS is a not-for-profit sharing company which has been operating in Fife for over seven years. It specialises in the delivery of SVQs and Modern Apprenticeships across the country in land-based subjects, such as trees and timber, estate maintenance and environmental conservation.