A three-year dream for a community buy out of Gavin’s Mill was realised this week.
On July 1, Gavin’s Mill Community Project (GMCP) took ownership of the mill building, after finally raising enough funds to pay the previous owner.
On the same day, the Fair Trade shop and cafe, located in the corner of Tesco Milngavie car park, reopened after lockdown with physical distancing in place.
Unfortunately, the long-awaited purchase of Gavin’s Mill for the community could not be celebrated in the way the project trustees would have wished, although there will be suitable revelry as soon conditions allow.
The project trustees gave their thanks to all the many people who have made the buy out possible, including a large team of volunteers, staff and those who have given donations and supported fund-raising activities.
Special thanks went to the late Audrey Anderson, a former volunteer at Gavin’s Mill and its predecessor the Coach House, who left a very generous legacy without which the purchase could have been in jeopardy.
Trustee Dr Sue Milne said: “As the new custodians of Gavin’s Mill, we are enormously grateful to all our supporters for making the purchase possible.
“We are very excited to be moving on with this lovely old building into the next phase of its long life in Milngavie.”
GMCP was set up in early 2017 with the hope of one day buying the mill, an iconic B-listed building, for the community.
The project leased the mill as a shop and cafe from the previous owners, while also transforming the building, which dates back to the 17th century, into today’s bright and welcoming centre.
Over the years, Gavin’s Mill’s commitment to Fair Trade has remained strong with a vastly extended range of local fresh produce, bread and pastries available to order from the Freedom Bakery, which supports the rehabilitation of offenders, and a Zero Waste range of cleaning and personal care products.
With purchase documentation now signed, the GMPC can begin the next phase of the project to realise the full potential of Gavin’s Mill as a community resource.
Dr Milne said: “There’s a lot still to do. Firstly, we have to take care of the building itself, making it safe from flooding, ensuring safe access for everyone and refurbishing where TLC is needed. Then we can move on to the big vision for the future.
“Gavin’s Mill has huge potential and with the help of all our supporters, old and new, we can create a vibrant and welcoming community resource at the heart of Milngavie.”