Land, Sea & Islands Centre, Arisaig – Design options


After our last post (Update from the New Row – 14th May) we’ve spent the last fortnight putting together design ideas for the refurbishment and extension to Arisaig’s Land, Sea & Islands Centre building. These are on public display in the building itself for the next two weeks so if you’re in Arisaig go and have a look and tell us what you think!

As well as illustrating what is possible the display also includes a description, sketches and diagrams to show how the current building isn’t providing the facilities the village has said they need.

There’s no substitute for seeing the display in person as it makes it much easier to compare the ideas we’ve put forward, but if you can’t make it along please click on the link below to view a PDF copy of the boards (which is around 7Mb.):

140523 Initial Options LR

If you have any comments please write them down (if you’re viewing in person) or email them to arisaigct[at] (replacing [at] with @).


The more we know what you think the better we’ll be able to develop the designs, so please have a look and have your say!


Update from the New Row


After setting up this WordPress blog back in 2011 I was advised to update it regularly so that existing and potential clients can see how busy we are. Ahhh, the irony…

We’ve been so busy that we simply haven’t had time to add updates on what we’ve been working on! Safe to say that things here on the New Row are ticking along nicely: current projects are progressing well and we’ve had a wee flurry of enquiries and new projects.

Perhaps the most exciting recent news is that we’ve been appointed by Arisaig Community Trust (ACT) to prepare designs and submit planning and warrant applications for the refurbishment of their ‘Land, Sea & Islands Centre’ – a heritage and tourist information facility in the middle of the village.

This is a wonderful project that will involve preparing design options for the village (and visitors to the village) to comment on before we refine the ideas into something firm and submit planning and building warrant applications. The driver for this is the recent news that ACT have been awarded a spectacular £162,000 to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions in the village through the implementation of three projects (click here) – the refurbishment and extension of the centre being the main component. ACT’s WordPress blog will have more details shortly…

As well as winning this project we’ve also been appointed by Caledonia Log Homes in the Borders to provide design and energy efficiency advice for a project in the northern Highlands, and we’re off to Southampton this week to discuss a new private house project.

Alas very few projects around Dunfermline but we’re not really complaining about lack of work…!

Dunfermline business improvement district (BID)



Like a lot of towns and cities across Scotland Dunfermline has its own Business Improvement District (BID), a group tasked with representing the interests of businesses within its boundaries.

Dunfermline Delivers (the body representing the town’s businesses) is in the process of putting together a proposal to support existing businesses and bring new ones to town, with the intention of submitting this to Fife Council and the Scottish Government by the end of February 2014 – see for more details.

As a young, small business it’s going to be interesting to try to develop the opportunities for our kind (and size) of business to be represented better on the high street. You don’t have to be a direct service for everyday consumers to be of value to a high street, after all. And, as Ernst Schumacher writes eloquently in his book Small is Beautiful, it’s much wiser to have a large number of small and medium-sized components than it is to have a small number of large ones.

Project completion (sort of) photos – Urquhart Farm Cottages

Had a nice hour and bit earlier today at one of my first projects, on the edge of Dunfermline, taking a few photos. Worrying how many turned our blurry when I got back to check them at the office…maybe should lay off the coffee before trying to focus too hard this sort of thing. (The last shot is of the adjacent farm sheds: precedent for the use of corrugated fibre cement used on the public side to the extension.)



New Year’s Resolutions


Happy New Year everyone! (Never very sure when that becomes a bit passé…) Hope you’re all on the 2014 diets and enjoying a week of hard exercise before realising that, actually, it’s freezing out there and, OMG, what on earth am I doing in lycra?

It’s off to a flying start here…managed to get a last dash application in to Climate Challenge Fund, fielded a very exciting sounding query for a new house in the Borders and even had an approach about a new house in Cambridgeshire – all before even settling down to check the backlog of festive emails.

Shouldn’t get too carried away though, January’s typically a lean month for us all so better get the head down and do some paid work. All the best for the next twelve months.