Forestry Office Transformed Into Dream Home

by Vickie Henry

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

Old 2When plans were put in place to knock down an old Forestry Commission office, a retired couple chose to spare the building from its fate, seizing the opportunity to transform it into a stunning dream home – which is now up for sale.

Retired telephone engineer and chartered accountant, Alan and Sheila Rhind, were looking for a project in their renowned local area of Dornoch and struck gold when they came across the unoccupied offices.

Immediately recognising the building’s potential, the couple took on the task of renovating the building, transforming it into a stunning home that’s now on the market with Inverness based estate agents, Bell Ingram website, for a guide price of £265,000.

With the project taking 18 months to complete, Alan and Sheila started from scratch, a process which included everything from ensuring the building’s solid structural integrity, to lifting the floors and even fitting an entirely new roof.


Now two years since it was first purchased the property is almost unrecognisable and having subsequently been named ‘West Cottage’, it has completed its transformation into a dream five bedroom property ideal for large families or potential business owners.Outdoors - after

Sheila said: “We have renovated a few properties in the past so when we were looking for a retirement project, this one seemed ideal because of the building’s great potential.

“The renovation was quite extensive and took around 18 months to complete with the major tasks including fitting a new roof and pulling up the floors to completely level out the property.

“The whole project was great fun and the house is looking great, but it’s simply too big for Alan and I which is why we have chosen to put West Cottage on the market.”

Located on Embo Street – one and a half miles from Dornoch – the property comes complete with five bedrooms (three en-suite), a large open plan kitchen, living and dining area, as well as an office which could easily be turned into a play room for younger children.


Joanne Stennett, of Bell Ingram in Inverness, is now helping the couple bring the new and improved version to market after having sold the property to Alan and Sheila in 2013.

Joanne said: “The difference in the property from when Alan and Sheila first purchased it is truly remarkable.

“When we put the building up for sale two years ago, we would have never imagined the incredible and extensive transformation that it has undergone to get it into perfect condition for a family home or a small B&B business.

“Alan and Sheila have really gone to a huge amount of effort to make this property the best that it can be. It has been insulated to the highest possible standard, which is great news for buyers as it is a real money saver for electricity bills.

“It has also been kitted out to a very high standard, with modern furnishings and appliances and it’s clear that the ample space has been used to its advantage, with three of the rooms offering their own en-suite, which again, is a great feature for those who would like to turn West Cottage into a guest house.”

West Cottage - Renovated - Living roomThe property is situated close to the town of Dornoch which comes complete with all the necessary day to day amenities for buyers, as well as the extremely highly regarded Dornoch Academy.

Golf enthusiasts are likely to be in their element with several courses situated nearby, including the world famous championship course, Royal Dornoch, which has previously been voted the 6th best golf course in the world.

Outdoor and sports enthusiasts will not be disappointed with a vast array of walks available in the surrounding countryside, along with great wildlife and brilliant fishing spots. The town of Dornoch also has a squash court, tennis court and a bowls lawn.

Dornoch is located 43 miles from the city of Inverness, which has many transport links throughout the UK and beyond.

Viewings are strictly by appointment only and can be arranged through Bell Ingram’s Inverness office on 01463 717799.

Established 112 years ago, Bell Ingram has 130 professional staff across 11 UK offices, including chartered surveyors, estate and forestry managers, architects, building surveyors, Tourism and green energy specialists.

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    Junior account executive at Scottish PR agency Holyrood PR

    Private: Vickie Henry

    Vickie Henry is a part of the expert PR team at the award-winning Holyrood PR, public relations agency in Edinburgh, Scotland.
    The PR agency works with businesses across Scotland.
    As well as providing media relations, crisis communications, Holyrood PR also offers PR photography, affordable video for businesses, social media services and strategic content delivery for businesses.

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