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Last-ditch bid to buy Castle Toward rejected

This news post is almost 7 years old

​Community bid to buy historic estate rejected by council

Councillors have pulled the plug on a last-ditch bid by a community group to buy a historic estate.

A protracted wrangle has surrounded the purchase of the Castle Toward estate in Cowal ever since the community proposed to take it over.

But at a specially convened meeting today Argyll and Bute Council rejected a final offer by the South Cowal Community Development Company (SCCDC) of £850,000 to turn the state into a viable community business.

The council had the land valued at £1.7 million although an estimate by estate agents Savilles put its value at £850,000.

It is also reportedly costing Argyll and Bute around £350,000 to maintain the estate.

In its bid the community group state: “In addition the local community, shops, restaurants and other local business concerns should also benefit substantially from this development, that could help ‘kick start’ a local revival and help remove our area from being one of the most ‘at risk’ in Scotland.

“We therefore ask you to vote for this development for the sake of your community. The alternative is likely to cost a substantial sum over the coming years and allow Dunoon and Cowal to decline further.”

The bid was rejected despite First Minister Nicola Sturgeon intervening and asking the council to be reasonable in its valuation of the estate.

Some 11,000 people also signed an online petition imploring the council to sell the estate to the community.

Argyll and Bute Council has been contacted for comment.



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