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Carbisdale Castle in Sutherland goes on the market again

By Mike Merritt

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Carbisdale Castle is situated above the Kyle of Sutherland.
Carbisdale Castle is situated above the Kyle of Sutherland.

A landmark Sutherland castle is back on the market at a cut price with offers over £1.2 million now being asked.

Carbisdale Castle near Bonar Bridge was up for sale a year ago at £1.5 million, but a deal to buy the building fell through.

It was sold to a London-based investment company six years ago after the asking price was reduced to £900,000.

Then in 2019 plans for a luxury spa and swimming pool were lodged with Highland Council.

Owners, the FCFM Group had said it intended to restore the 40-bedroom castle “to its former glory as a world class private residence”.

Carbisdale Castle had operated as a youth hostel for decades before lying vacant for several years.

But now it is back on the market with agents Strutt and Parker.

Last year, it attracted international interest from private buyers, hoteliers and charitable organisations. A potential purchaser was found, but the deal was not completed.

It is now being advertised again as a “world-class residential or commercial development opportunity”.

Strutt and Parker say Carbisdale is “one of Highland Scotland’s most iconic castles”.

Robert McCulloch, the agency's head of estates and farm agency, Scotland, said: “It’s frustrating for the sellers and frustrating for the people who were very keen to buy it.

“But the finance arrangements they had in place were not strong enough to commit to the purchase and to the renovation costs required. So, with reluctance, they have had to withdraw.

“It is now back on the market, as happens from time to time with property sales.

“It is priced to attract interest and we hope to find someone who can conclude a sale this time.

“It attracted interest last year and I’ve no doubt it will again because of the iconic nature of the castle and its location.”

Mr McCulloch said Carbisdale’s current owners are keen to find a buyer who has the ideas and resources to complete the purchase and develop the building.

He said: “It needs someone who has a plan and the vision and the ability to see it through.

“Whether that is an organisation or an individual, and whether it is for commercial use or private use, all options are open.

“Our clients are responsible people, so they want to find someone with the best interests of the building and of the community at heart.”

Carbisdale was the last castle to be built in Scotland and was constructed between 1906 and 1917 for Mary Caroline, Dowager Duchess of Sutherland.

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