Abandoned farmhouse to be bulldozed for homes

The C-listed building was converted to a farmhouse in 1952 but has lain derelict for years.
The C-listed building was converted to a farmhouse in 1952 but has lain derelict for years.
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A LISTED former farmhouse on Scotland’s official buildings-at-risk register is to be demolished and turned into homes.

The Cammo Home Farm Steading, on the Cammo Estate, is to be sold by the council to housing developer Cala Homes, which plans to demolish the vacant C-listed 1908 building and replace it with two new luxury family homes.

The £600,000 sale would spell the end of a historic building that was set to be restored in 2009 by a private buyer that wanted to convert it into a home, before that deal collapsed.

Users of the 85-acre Cammo Estate, which sits between Edinburgh Airport and Barnton and was bought by the council from the National Trust for Scotland in 1980, say that demolition is the only remaining option for the rapidly deteriorating building.

Nick Benge, environmental projects manager at Friends of Cammo community group, said: “Since it has been abandoned and not occupied it has fallen into significant disrepair so I do not see why it would make sense or be viable to restore it. It makes more sense to demolish it and replace it with two new buildings.

“There is no way you could restore it now – it wouldn’t be economically sensible.

“From the Friends of Cammo point of view, we would like to see the issue resolved because we can’t apply for local nature reserve status for the park until this is sorted out, so the general feeling is we’d hope to see it expedited and sorted out soon.

Originally built as a golf clubhouse for the now defunct Cramond Brig Golf Club, the C-listed Tudor-style building was converted to a farmhouse in 1952 but has lain derelict for years.

It was put on the at-risk register by the Scottish Civic Trust in 1999 and a number of previous proposals for the site, including flattening the building to make room for new houses, have failed.

But council officials say Cala has told them that the building is in such a dilapidated state that it “cannot be economically restored”.

The proceeds of the £600,000 sale – which is subject to Cala winning planning consent to demolish the building – would be ring-fenced for much-needed improvements to the Cammo Estate.

Alex Adamson, project manager of the Buildings at Risk Register, said: “In its day it was an attractive building and over a number of years the council has been trying to encourage reuse of the property. Unfortunately no new plan has come to fruition and the building has continued to deteriorate.

“The nature of the register is to encourage people to consider new uses or adapt properties to make new uses possible but without recent contact with the property it is difficult for us to comment.”

Historic Scotland will carefully consider the condition of the property and whether or not it would be appropriate to permit demolition.

A spokesman said: “From time to time some historic buildings do have to be lost but for every one on the register that has to be demolished three are brought back into use.

“Sometimes there is no suitable new use and unfortunately some do have to be lost, but we do not have the information to say if that is the case here.”

A city council spokeswoman said: “Surveys have confirmed that demolition is the only option for this building. We are now awaiting permission from Historic Scotland to go ahead.”