Monday 26 February 2024
 4.4°C   SW Gentle Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Housing / Could Hayfield House site be a future housing development?

The Hayfield House site in Lerwick. Photo: Jim Mullay

THE LONG-term idea of turning the Hayfield House site in Lerwick into a potential housing development has been floated by council officers.

The site includes the large, B-listed Hayfield House, which is currently used by Shetland Islands Council as its headquarters for children’s services.

But a proposed property asset management strategy for 2023 to 2028 highlights that feasibility work could start on options for alternative accommodation for children’s services – with the site kept for potential housing development.

However, assets, commissioning and procurement manager Robert Sinclair stressed the idea was in its very earliest stage.

The strategy said that Hayfield House – which was built in the 1800s and was previously a hotel – will require “significant investment” to remain fit for purpose, particularly when it comes to energy performance.

“The building has considerable constraints in terms of how it could be adapted in line with future working practices,” the report adds.

“However, the site holds significant development potential and market value, particularly in relation to future potential housing developments.”

Given the number of other housing developments planned in Lerwick Shetland Central councillor Moraig Lyall questioned if any future scheme at Hayfield could take place even in the next 20 years.

Sinclair said in response councillors have made it clear they would like to see the local authority’s property assets being “fit for purpose”.

He added that Hayfield is “very much a consideration for the future” and said there always needs to be forward planning.

The site is already surrounded by housing as well as a playpark, and it also includes newer buildings next to Hayfield House.

The now vacant site at the former Eric Gray Centre has also been earmarked for housing – but in this instance, potentially for ‘homes for life’ given how close support staff at the nearby Edward Thomason and Taing House would be.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

 

The strategy also suggests that council owned land in the Staney Hill area could be used to address demand for commercial property and land suitable for industrial use.

“Development of this land has so far been inhibited by the ground conditions, however officers are currently exploring innovative ways of overcoming those obstacles,” it adds.

“It is recommended that this work continues as a matter of urgency.

“There are obviously potential benefits to the local economy as a result of this work. Potential benefits to the council include revenue income and acquisition of land with further development potential.”

The meeting also heard there was no firm interest in anyone leasing the vacant Train Shetland building in Lerwick, despite an expectation there may have been “pent up demand” from the renewables sector.

But the large size of the building may have put people off, a meeting of the SIC’s policy and resources committee heard on Monday.

However, there may be an opportunity for the building to be involved in testing the creative hub pilot which is “ultimately planned” for the former Anderson Educational Institute at the Knab.

The council is also considering its options with the museum store at Staney Hill, which the local authority leases.

‘Aladdin’s cave’ of museum artefacts runs out of space

Another focus of the strategy is enhanced provision and accessibility in schools.

It also mentions a proposed masterplan for part of the Lerwick Lanes, which has attracted mixed views.

The proposed property asset management strategy for 2023 to 2028 will go in front of the full council next week for final approval.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.

 

Newsletters

Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.