Last Tuesday November 14th 2017, saw the first meeting of the Feasibility Team that will look into the future of Rosefield Mills. Local building conservation trust, DHBT, has secured funding from D&G Council, a Charitable Trust and the Architectural Heritage Trust to begin the process that will save one of Dumfries’ favourite buildings from neglect and/or demolition and bring it back to life for the benefit of the Dumfries community.
Rosefield Mills, much-loved redbrick and sandstone building, standing beside the River Nith opposite Dock Park, is an iconic Dumfries landmark, the last of the great Victorian mills that once lined the river, and a vital part of Dumfries’ heritage and identity. It came up for auction at the beginning of the year and since then the DHBT have been working to raise funds and gain support to bring this beautiful building back into the life of the town. The last element of the Stage 1 funding was approved on Monday, and the project has moved swiftly into action.
Over the next 3 months a series of community consultations lead by Julia Frost of social enterprise charity, PAS, will gather information about what the Dumfries needs and wants to see happen in the Mills. A thorough investigation of the condition and potential of the building itself will be carried out by Purcell Architects and a business plan to test it all will be developed by Michael Booth of Clare Consulting. The final proposal will be a distillation of the information the team gets from the community so DHBT is keen to invite everyone to take an active interest and get involved in the process.
Julia Frost, leading the community engagement, said, “This is a fantastic opportunity to discover what new facilities people would like to see. The regeneration of Rosefield Mills will make an enormous difference to the town and the River Nith.” Between now and April 2018 please look out for a series of events where the team will be asking you to contribute your thoughts, ideas and vision for the new Rosefield Mills.
Architect Niall Phillips of Purcell, thinks, “This building is a rare gem. Dumfries is so lucky. Its location, its exuberant style, its sheer size give this project a huge advantage. Great things can happen here.”
Michael Booth of Clare Consulting is, “…very privileged to be involved in such a significant community project which has the potential to build on the unique character and position of the town.”
The DHBT is delighted that the project is now up and running. Luke Moloney, chair of the DHBT said, “Everyone I speak to says how much they love Rosefield Mills, now we have a chance to save it.”
You can follow the progress of the project on facebook and on the Trust’s website, www.dumfriestrust.org in the newspapers. Please come to the community engagement events and tell us what you think should happen at Rosefield Mills.
Watch this space, Rosefield Mills needs you.