Major disruption at Ayr Station due to dangerous old hotel (from August 2018)

380101

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2015
Messages
783
All 4 platforms at Ayr station have now been shortened to approximately 96metres as of midnight tonight due to ongoing issues with the structural stability of the Ayr Station Hotel. Major concerns have been raised over the integrity of the roof structure and a gable end wall and there are fears it may collapse onto platforms 3 and 4.

The shortening of platforms 3 and 4 has resulted in there now being no access to Ayr Townhead carriage sidings and also means that there will be no services south of Ayr to Girvan and Stranraer.

A significantly reduced timetable will be put in place from tomorrow morning which will likely cause mayhem in the morning peak. No multi units will be able to work from Ayr so formations will be restricted to 4 car 380 maximum until further notice.

This couldnt have come at a worse time given that its the yearly Air Show this weekend.
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

Strathclyder

Established Member
Joined
12 Jun 2013
Messages
1,331
Location
Clydebank, West Dunbartonshire
Seen this coming a mile off, in all honesty. The hotel has been deteriorating for years with successive owners either unable or unwilling to do anything with it (the present owners have apparently gone bust, but am not sure how true that is; am sure someone will put me right one way or the other). Regardless, one hopes that South Ayrshire Council, Network Rail & ScotRail collectively seek damages for what will undoubtedly be an extended period of significant disruption that ultimately could have been avoided.

As raised above, the timing couldn't have been worse with the Airshow this weekend; one hopes that sufficient shuttle buses can be organised in time to help ease the strain on the significantly disrupted rail service & to assist the X77 Stagecoach express service to/from Glasgow. A non-stop service from Ayr to Glasgow and a all-stations stopper, perhaps...?

Lastly, does anyone know if there is any stock (156 or 380?) trapped south of Ayr as a result of this, given that access is now severely limited? Perhaps a stupid question, but am curious all the same.
 
Last edited:

380101

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2015
Messages
783
Seen this coming a mile off, in all honesty. The hotel has been deteriorating for years with successive owners either unable or unwilling to do anything with it (the present owners have apparently gone bust, but am not sure how true that is; am sure someone will put me right one way or the other). Regardless, one hopes that South Ayrshire Council, Network Rail & ScotRail collectively seek damages for what will undoubtedly be an extended period of significant disruption that ultimately could have been avoided.

As raised above, the timing couldn't have been worse with the Airshow this weekend; one hopes that sufficient shuttle buses can be organised in time to help ease the strain on the significantly disrupted rail service & to assist the X77 Stagecoach express service to/from Glasgow. A non-stop service from Ayr to Glasgow and a all-stations stopper, perhaps...?

Lastly, does anyone know if there is any stock (156 or 380?) trapped south of Ayr as a result of this, given that access is now severely limited? Perhaps a stupid question, but am curious all the same.
No stock trapped south of Ayr. Some services were cancelled last night to ensure they had nothing stuck.
 

380101

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2015
Messages
783
Who owns and is resposible for the maintenance of this hotel?
The Hotel is owned by a Malaysian businessman. Network Rail also own the station parts of the same building.

The Hotel owner is responsible for the maintenance but South Ayrshire council and Network Rail have had to step in to make things safe as the owner is an absentee landlord and has ignored several dangerous building notices.
 

alangla

Member
Joined
11 Apr 2018
Messages
858
Location
Glasgow
Is Falkland Yard electrified/usable? If it is then 7/8 cars to Prestwick Airport or Town or maybe Newton on Ayr for a bus to Ayr might be an option for the airshow
 

Highlandspring

Established Member
Joined
14 Oct 2017
Messages
2,393
The trouble with Falkland is that it is DB Cargo infrastructure and requires their groundstsff to accept trains in and out. That’s been arranged to allow 6R46 to run round for the rest of the week but money had to change hands for that. We only found out they were extending the exclusion zone at 1600 yesterday so I had an extremely busy evening working out where to stable everything and sorting out the emergency timetable for today. Made the day go quicker though I suppose.
 

route:oxford

Established Member
Joined
1 Nov 2008
Messages
4,949
Regardless, one hopes that South Ayrshire Council, Network Rail & ScotRail collectively seek damages for what will undoubtedly be an extended period of significant disruption that ultimately could have been avoided.
If the company is bust, there will be no money for damages.

The best outcome would be a joint bid from Network Rail and Ayr Council. Payment of 1p for the building and get it properly restored.

I suspect the actual outcome will be purchase for 1p and demolish.

Take a look at the roofline from 2015 on Google Street view

https://goo.gl/maps/QbEqkLiC3f62

Awful.
 

haggishunter

Member
Joined
25 Aug 2016
Messages
188
Interesting set of photos of the hotel: https://www.bcd-urbex.com/station-hotel-ayr-scotland/

For those not familiar with the site, this one indicates the difficulty of taking any action now the building has reached such a state. How could access be got to do the extent of repairs necessary and put in the support that would be required to do it? Demolition would clearly also have protracted implications for the station - is the station's train shed supported by the hotel structure?

 

Highlandspring

Established Member
Joined
14 Oct 2017
Messages
2,393
My understanding is that the hotel roof is in imminent danger of collapse and the gable end (closest to where the picture above is taken from) would not be far behind it. There has been an exclusion zone round the building because of the danger from falling masonry for weeks if not months now, with some restrictions on the station as a result, but yesterday’s assessment indicates the problem has become much more serious. The council apparently doesn’t have the money to demolish the building.
 

380101

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2015
Messages
783
My understanding is that the hotel roof is in imminent danger of collapse and the gable end (closest to where the picture above is taken from) would not be far behind it. There has been an exclusion zone round the building because of the danger from falling masonry for weeks if not months now, with some restrictions on the station as a result, but yesterday’s assessment indicates the problem has become much more serious. The council apparently doesn’t have the money to demolish the building.
I'm certain Network Rail and ScotRail will be happy to fund the demolition in order to be able to provide a modern, fit for purpose Railway station and proper traincrew facilities. As what is there at present for staff is absolutely not acceptable in the 21st century!
 

380101

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2015
Messages
783
Isn't it listed?
That doesn't matter if the building is so dangerous that it could collapse. The priority is keeping the public safe and if the only practical and economical way to do so is to demolish it, then thats what will happen.

10million to make it wind, watertight and safe or 3million to demolish. So its obvious whats going to happen.

Its an old, unsafe building with nobody stepping up to invest in it and its seriously hampering a major travel hub for the West of Scotland.
 

Elecman

Established Member
Joined
31 Dec 2013
Messages
2,034
Location
Lancashire
So who pays for demotion under an unsafe building notice if the landlord wont( because potentially bankrupt) , NR obviuously has to fund its share if the demolition has to include their part of the building.
 

al78

Established Member
Joined
7 Jan 2013
Messages
1,670
If a powerful winter windstorm causes a partial collapse damaging the station and/or causing injury, who is liable?
 

Clip

On Moderation
Joined
28 Jun 2010
Messages
10,616
If a powerful winter windstorm causes a partial collapse damaging the station and/or causing injury, who is liable?
Depending who owned what part of the building then it would be their insurers i would imagine
 

Crossover

Established Member
Joined
4 Jun 2009
Messages
8,126
Location
Yorkshire
Seen this coming a mile off, in all honesty. The hotel has been deteriorating for years with successive owners either unable or unwilling to do anything with it (the present owners have apparently gone bust, but am not sure how true that is; am sure someone will put me right one way or the other). Regardless, one hopes that South Ayrshire Council, Network Rail & ScotRail collectively seek damages for what will undoubtedly be an extended period of significant disruption that ultimately could have been avoided.
I have seen a similar issue with a property next to a group I volunteer with - luckily said property was only a couple of storeys high, but part of one of the walls had been getting worse for some time, til it eventually gave way, with part of the roof going too. With an absentee owner, I believe the council stepped in to make it safe (rebuilt the wall with breeze blocks) and I believe would have pursued the matter after the event. I don't know all the ins and outs but this is broadly as I understand it
 

gsnedders

Established Member
Joined
6 Sep 2015
Messages
1,414
So who pays for demotion under an unsafe building notice if the landlord wont( because potentially bankrupt) , NR obviuously has to fund its share if the demolition has to include their part of the building.
The council does, ultimately, if it's a matter of imminent safety (which the above makes it sound like). The council is likely to try to reclaim the cost of the work from the owner through the courts, though of course if they're bankrupt they won't get much (IIRC, there's precedent for the council gaining ownership of the now vacant land as partial payment of the debts).

If a powerful winter windstorm causes a partial collapse damaging the station and/or causing injury, who is liable?
The owner of the building, as they owe the public a duty of care. (Depending on whether it's a pre-existing and known issue, they may be indemnified by their insurers.)
 

DanTrain

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2017
Messages
753
Location
Sheffield
Isn't the main issue that the owner has done a disappearing act, so the chance of getting a penny back will be small?
Can the council not re-possess the building, fix it and sell it on given the owner is no-where to be found? Then they might make some money back for their troubles at least?

Edit: This may not be legally possible, I don't know?
 

Starmill

Veteran Member
Associate Staff
Events Co-ordinator
Joined
18 May 2012
Messages
15,050
Location
Manchester
There might be a way for them to do that, but if there is it would doubtless take many years. More pressingly, it would require millions of pounds of taxpayers' money to refurbish the hotel - and given that apparently nobody else wishes to spend this money on it, that suggests that there isn't much money to be made from it.
 

geoffk

Established Member
Joined
4 Aug 2010
Messages
1,509
I'm certain Network Rail and ScotRail will be happy to fund the demolition in order to be able to provide a modern, fit for purpose Railway station and proper traincrew facilities. As what is there at present for staff is absolutely not acceptable in the 21st century!
I've no connection with Ayr but, while understanding the disruption to train services, this is a building of great architectural merit and demolition would be a travesty. Scotland has already lost the Glasgow School of Art. Yes I know, where's the money going to come from to restore it?
 

DanTrain

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2017
Messages
753
Location
Sheffield
There might be a way for them to do that, but if there is it would doubtless take many years. More pressingly, it would require millions of pounds of taxpayers' money to refurbish the hotel - and given that apparently nobody else wishes to spend this money on it, that suggests that there isn't much money to be made from it.
That may well be the case, but one can at least hope they make something off it at the end of the day, even if it's in 2030!
 

Crossover

Established Member
Joined
4 Jun 2009
Messages
8,126
Location
Yorkshire
Can the council not re-possess the building, fix it and sell it on given the owner is no-where to be found? Then they might make some money back for their troubles at least?

Edit: This may not be legally possible, I don't know?
There might be a way for them to do that, but if there is it would doubtless take many years. More pressingly, it would require millions of pounds of taxpayers' money to refurbish the hotel - and given that apparently nobody else wishes to spend this money on it, that suggests that there isn't much money to be made from it.
Something similar has happened in Dewsbury - old listed building taken on by the authorities who started work on it. It was then due to become part of the local college, as well as having some retail space included (bearing in mind half the existing retail units in the town are empty now as well!). With Carrillion going bust, it was left in a state once again of not being weathertight - though it has now been boarded up. Essentially the council have been left with a white elephant and there may have been some merit to just demolishing the lot of it, to be honest!
 

Top