Surprise Find Leads To Doors Open Day Success

by Alicia Simpson

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Bell Ingram Doors Open DayA leading land and estate agent is set to participate in a second local Doors Open Day event after its initial involvement proved so successful – and yielded a surprise war-time discovery about its building.

Durn – the headquarters of Bell Ingram – was one of five new buildings that opened for the first time at the event this year, which saw a total of 40 places of interest across Perth and Kinross become accessible to the public for free over the weekend.

Bell Ingram’s main office is an elegant late 19th century villa set on the eastern bank of the Tay. It has a rich history, having previously been used as a family home for the famous Pullars from Perth and, at one time, housed the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.

The building saw more than 150 visitors take advantage of Doors Open Day, some of which came from as far as 50 miles away to appreciate the architecture, history and stories on offer.

Victoria McCusker, of Bell Ingram in Perth, said that opening Durn’s doors to the public for the first time led to some exciting discoveries.

She said: “We knew that our headquarters had once been home to the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, but one visitor brought in some old black and white photos that showed there used to be a flight simulator in our basement, which was a huge surprise to us.

“The pictures showed various images of airmen posing with the simulator on training exercises – so it was fascinating to think of the role the building had in the war effort and to compare this to how our basement is used now as an office space.

“It was fantastic to have so many people come to visit us to find out what we do here and take in the views of the River Tay and North Inch – views we all take for granted daily.

“It was definitely a huge success, and we look forward to getting involved again and opening our doors to even more visitors next year.”

 

 

The buildings that took part in Perth’s Doors Open Day ranged from spectacular castles to civic buildings that are in use every day. Particular rare opportunities on offer were a visit Sunnybrae Cottage – an A-listed building in the care of Historic Environment Scotland, and free entry to Cultybraggan Camp, the only preserved POW camp in Scotland.

Established 117 years ago, Bell Ingram has 130 professional staff across 11 UK offices including: farm, estate and forestry managers; chartered surveyors, estate agents, architects, planners, and building surveyors; and tourism, GIS mapping, and renewable energy specialists.

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