A FORMER sugar factory site is set to be transformed into homes under plans by former Rangers directors the Easdale brothers. 

A plot of land which once formed part of the former Tate & Lyle sugar refinery in Greenock is being proposed as a new private housing development by Sandy and James Easdale.

The 5.2-acre elevated site on Drumfrochar Road was sold by property agents Bowman Rebecchi in October 2021 after the long-term vacant site closed in 1997.

Development plans have since been submitted by Dalglen Investments who jointly purchased the site as part of their £800 million countrywide property portfolio.

Dalglen’s property investment operations are behind several housing projects throughout Scotland, including the former IBM site in Greenock, the former Tullis Russell paper factory in Glenrothes, and a waterside housing development at Dumbarton, creating over 3,000 new homes within the next decade.

HeraldScotland: The site beforeThe site before

This latest proposed £15 million project in Greenock will comprise 46 new homes, with a new double entry point from Lynedoch Street created from the development which will be split across two levels.

It is anticipated that 40 jobs - including at least 15 apprenticeships - will be created through the construction phase which could last up to two years, with the site identified as a priority place as part of Inverclyde Council’s Local Development Plan.

A mixture of three-bed detached, and semi-detached properties are proposed, with the site stretching along the east of Drumfrochar Road, adjacent to M&J Timber and Wellington Park Bowling Club.

HeraldScotland: The site afterThe site after

Rectangular in shape, with short tails at the top east and west sections, the development site occupies an elevated position, with open aspects of the River Clyde and Greenock town centre.

Sandy Easdale said: “We have submitted this new proposal with the intent to create increased housing capacity and to continue to support the future economic prosperity of the Broomhill and Drumfrochar area.

“Other private housing developments close to the Drumfrochar site previously have proven to be extremely popular and have provided great family homes for locals and long-term ownership."

HeraldScotland: One of the street viewsOne of the street views

He also said: “We see no reason why this wouldn’t be the case with our site, and we expect this to be a highly popular development.”

The application has been prepared and submitted by the planning and design consultancy firm, Rebecchi Architectural.

James Easdale said: "The ongoing development and economic improvement of this part of Greenock is something we are deeply passionate about, and further supports our ongoing investment into nearby areas at Baker Street, Ingliston Street, and Orchard Street."

HeraldScotland: Another street viewAnother street view

He added: “We believe this is a fantastic opportunity to bring this historic site back to life while also creating much-needed homes for locals while creating further repopulation opportunities.”

Sandy and James Easdale, 54 and 50, were new entries in this year’s Sunday Times Rich List, with their fortune, estimated at £1.4billion, made through transport and property.

Both continue to invest heavily into Inverclyde, with the proposed development further complimenting Inverclyde Council’s wider regeneration of the Drumfrochar area, which includes the £3 million B7054 road realignment and a £1.8 million enterprise hub.

HeraldScotland: How the homes might lookHow the homes might look

Bowman Rebecchi has supported both the previous and current owners of the site, with its unique model supporting the sales, acquisition, architectural, and planning processes.

The proposed development is set to be reviewed by Inverclyde Council planners.

The Easdales, through their conglomerate Arranglen and its subsidiary companies, have a wide range of business interests spanning transport, manufacturing, commercial property and land investment.

HeraldScotland: James and Sandy EasdaleJames and Sandy Easdale

The Easdale family also owns McGill's Group, claimed to be the largest independent UK bus operator.