East Ayrshire, Scotland
Regional Regeneration Growth Strategy
East Ayrshire Council
Economic Growth Strategy
Town Centre Regeneration
Renewable Resource Economy
Heritage Tourism and Traditional Building Skills
The Studio LK team, whilst with the Prince’s Foundation, led an Enquiry by Design process, to develop a vision for the future growth of East Ayrshire region, with a focus on the four towns of Mauchline, Auchinleck, Cumnock and New Cumnock.
The “Four Towns” Enquiry by Design looked not only at the town centres and town structure for Mauchline, Auchinleck, Cumnock and New Cumnock, but also aimed to develop a unified economic strategy for the area.
Despite the prevailing image of a set of communities challenged by the loss of extractive and manufacturing industries, the presence of strong and vibrant communities with a rich heritage based upon mining and agriculture was prominent. The towns are also surrounded by pleasing rural landscape and ecology, equal to nearby areas with a strong appeal to visitors.
A fundamental part of the vision was the continued improvement of transport connections for East Ayrshire. Improved rail station facilities at New Cumnock and Auchinleck, a possible new station for Mauchline and more frequent service to both Glasgow and Kilmarnock were all seen as important steps.
A series of projects emerged in each town. They build upon existing assets, tackle problems and issues identified by each community, and are linked to a long term proposed masterplan for each town centre.
Three key themes emerged: heritage and heritage tourism, moving to a renewable resource economy (as coal mining declines in importance) and a focus on traditional building skills.