The chair of Argyll and Bute Council’s Bute and Cowal area committee has expressed his relief after the authority agreed in principle to sell the Castle Toward estate, opposite Rothesay Bay.
Entrepreneurs Keith Punler and Denice Purdie have been chosen as the preferred bidders for the property after making a bid of £1.5 million for the estate, and plan to use the site for leisure, hospitality, tourism, retail, manufacturing and housing, with a particular focus on creating a luxury hotel and spa for the wedding market.
Bute councillor Robert Macintyre said: “After many years of speculation and doubt, the council has at last got what looks like a welcome receipt for the Castle Toward estate.
“There is no doubt that if you add up everything the council has spent on the site from day one, we have not made much of a profit, but at least we will not incur any more large maintenance or insurance costs if this bid is accepted.”
The council attracted much criticism, in the local area and far beyond, after rebuffing a community group’s attempt to purchase the site earlier this year.