Port Edgar Marina boosted by prestigious retail signing - Shapes Furniture to swap city base for redeveloped waterfront
A major antique, art and furniture dealer is to relocate from its city home to Port Edgar Marina in South Queensferry, on the outskirts of Edinburgh, heralding a major boost to the waterside development’s transformation.
Shapes Furniture, which attracts buyers from around the world, is preparing to move from its base in Sighthill in Edinburgh, at the end of this year. It will bring to an end more than 40 years of trading in the capital.
The business will take up a prime location in the shadow of the famous three bridges across the Firth of Forth. The Port Edgar Marina site will become its base for all its furniture, art and antique viewings and sales.
The retailer’s arrival marks a key point in the development of Port Edgar Marina into a visitor destination, which will combine its stunning setting and reputation as a major water sports hub, with new attractions for visitors and shoppers.
News that Shapes Furniture has opted to move to the South Queensferry site follows recent confirmation that award-winning Buzzworks Holdings – which manages nine bar and dining venues across Ayrshire – is to run a new restaurant at the marina.
Russell Aitken, managing director at Port Edgar Marina, said: “Shapes Furniture is well known for its appreciation of quality, classic style and craftsmanship combined with a deep love for history. That makes it a perfect fit for a location in the shadow of the three stunning Forth crossings, which itself can reflect on centuries of history.
“We are looking forward to an exciting new era at Port Edgar Marina, and are delighted that such a prestigious and well-known business is joining us on our journey.”
Port Edgar is located between the Forth Road Bridge and the new Queensferry Crossing, close to the heart of picturesque South Queensferry.
Its name is believed to derive from King Edgar Aetheling, who apparently landed there in 1068. His sister, Princess Margaret, married Malcolm III.
A pier was erected at Port Edgar in 1819, and King George IV landed there in 1822 during a visit to the Earl of Hopetoun. The harbour provided a base for the Royal Navy during both World Wars.
Operators Port Edgar Holdings took over its running from City of Edinburgh Council’s Leisure division in April 2014. Redevelopment work has already involved refurbishing buildings and demolishing others to create better parking facilities, and dredging work to make the harbour available to larger vessels.
The marina provides berths for around 300 boats and is home to a yacht club, a rowing club, several cruise boat operators and Scotland’s largest water sports centre.
Mr Aitken added: “Down the years Port Edgar has enabled generations of sailors to enjoy fantastic views across the Firth of Forth. We are preparing to share that with a new generation of visitors, in an exciting new development that will see Port Edgar Marina become a new Scottish tourist attraction.”
Shapes Furniture was launched in Edinburgh in 1974 and has evolved into a major force in the UK furniture, antique and auction market. It has a reputation for holding a particularly interesting stock of high quality and hard to find furniture, reputed to be the largest and best of its kind in the UK.
As well as selling a wide range of quality furniture, its auction house holds regular high profile sales. One notable highlight was the sale of Jack Vettriano’s “Dance Me to the End of Love”, which sold for £346,000.
It plans to hold a relocation sale in December, before launching from its new home at Port Edgar Marina in April 2018.
Ali Black of Shapes Furniture said: “Port Edgar Marina is in a beautiful location, overshadowed by the marvels of engineering that are the three Forth bridges.
“We’re looking forward to moving to such an iconic setting, in a waterside development that will attract visitors from around the world.”
3 May 2017
Port Edgar Marina reaches milestone with restaurant operator appointment: Buzzworks to open its first restaurant in the East of Scotland
The redevelopment of Port Edgar Marina will take a major step forward today when Buzzworks is appointed to run a new restaurant at the marina in South Queensferry, near Edinburgh.
Buzzworks Holdings – which manages nine prestigious venues including Elliots, Scotts in Troon and Largs, Lido venues in Prestwick and Troon, The Treehouse in Ayr, The Longhouse in Kilmarnock, The Mill House in Stewarton and their newest venue The Corner House in Kilwinning – now has over 400 employees and a turnover of more than £15 million in the last financial year.
The family-run business founded by Kenny, Colin and Alison Blair, is excited to be expanding Buzzworks and launching its first restaurant in the East of the country. It is expected to open at the marina before the end of 2017 after an extensive fit out programme and will create around 60 new jobs.
The creation of the restaurant marks a milestone for operators Port Edgar Holdings, who took over the running of Port Edgar Marina from City of Edinburgh Council in April 2014. The Council’s Edinburgh Leisure division had been running the marina since 1998.
Since taking over the facility, Port Edgar Holdings has been redeveloping the site, including refurbishing ancillary buildings, demolishing derelict structures to create more parking spaces, and dredging the harbour so it can take larger vessels and make the marina less dependent on the tide.
The restaurant will be located above the marina’s newly refurbished retail space, Bosuns Locker. The shop stocks a wide selection of outdoor clothing and footwear including a Coast and Country collection from brands including Musto, Dubarry, Schoffel and Joules.
Russell Aitken, managing director at Port Edgar Marina, said: “Port Edgar has a rich and varied history and we’re making sure that it has an exciting future ahead of it. We’re delighted that Buzzworks has chosen to locate its next restaurant at the marina, where diners will be able to enjoy quality food with stunning views of the Forth’s three bridges.
“Over the past year, we’ve secured the future of the marina as a sailing destination by dredging the harbour, bringing in a mobile crane, and improving the security, lighting and access to the slipway for boat handling.
“We’re putting Port Edgar on the map as a tourist destination by opening up the marina to a much wider audience. Visitors can now enjoy the spectacular views across the Firth of Forth that myself and other sailors have done for so many years.”
Kenny Blair, Buzzworks Holdings MD, said: “This is another ambitious step forward in our continued growth strategy as we branch out from the west of Scotland. The venue will not only bring a new dining experience to the area, but an opportunity for the local community to work with a company ranked 40th within The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For.
“Buzzworks prides itself on the delicious food, serious cocktails and superb service we provide to customers, so it’s an exciting time for the business as we extend our portfolio to the east coast and take Scotts to South Queensferry. We can’t wait to begin fitting out the property.”
Lying between the Forth Road Bridge and the new Queensferry Crossing, Port Edgar has berths for around 300 boats and is home to a yacht club, a rowing club, several cruise boat operators and is home to Scotland’s largest water sports centre.
Fergus Ewing, MSP and Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, said: “I had the pleasure of visiting Port Edgar Marina where I was very impressed with the imaginative re-use of the infrastructure in the development of the site, including the positive the impact the dredging has in being able to attract larger vessels to the marina.
“This is yet another positive addition to the marine tourism portfolio in Scotland, helping the economic development of communities around the entire coastline of Scotland.”
Port Edgar traces its roots back to 1810 when a pier was erected on the site, with King George IV landing at the harbour in 1822 during a visit to the Earl of Hopetoun.
Port Edgar served as a naval base during both World Wars and was taken over when the Royal Navy left in 1978 by Lothian Regional Council, before passing into the hands of City of Edinburgh Council during local government reorganisation in 1996.
The marina’s name is believed to derive from King Edgar Aetheling, who fled from the Normans and is thought to have landed on the site in 1068 to seek refuge at the court of King Malcolm III. Edgar’s sister, Princess Margaret, later married Malcolm III.