Rosefield Mills

Dear Friends and Supporters of DHBT,


Dumfries Historic Buildings Trust is keen to promote and encourage the sensitive restoration of these very special buildings along the River Nith. Given the derelict state of the buildings, through decades of disuse and neglect, and their sheer scale, however, this will be an extremely challenging project of some magnitude and complexity. A positive outcome will depend on strong community support, as well as considerable resources, vision and determination.

If no other sympathetic developer steps forward, DHBT is keen to lead a project to restore these significant buildings and to bring the site back to use in a way that will render it a positive and exciting mixed-use asset for the town of Dumfries.

Options for the buildings’ re-use would need to be explored fully and rigorously; but it is clear to us that there is an opportunity at Rosefield Mills to develop a project that brings a variety of exciting and creative uses to these buildings, and in particular to make much more of the Venetian ‘palazzo’ frontage on our River Nith. There is scope, too, for creating enjoyable public space that engages with the river frontage on this site.

We appeal to the public for their support, and for those who can to pledge funds or finance – donations or loans – to enable the trust to acquire these buildings if no other suitable developer is found. If you, or anyone you know, would like to help us, please contact the trust by email:

DHBT is a ‘developer of last resort’ for the restoration and re-use of historic buildings that would otherwise be lost or destroyed.

Notes on DHBT:
The trust is a “Building Preservation Trust” (BPT), with charitable status. As such, it is in a position to raise and co-ordinate various forms of finance such as grants from central and local government; low-interest loans from the Architectural Heritage Fund; and donations, gifts in kind, and concessionary loans from companies, charitable trusts and the general public.  The primary aim of the trust is to rescue and preserve historic buildings in and around Dumfries. It is intended that in the longer term, the trust will develop and operate a ‘revolving fund’ for the restoration or conservation of historic buildings across Dumfries and Galloway, to enable their continued and sustainable use.
BPTs are voluntary organisations, set up by like-minded individuals who are willing to devote time and effort, mostly without pay or other financial reward, to a good cause. They exist principally in order to save high risk, low return historic buildings in which nobody else is prepared to invest.
As its primary objective is the sympathetic conservation and restoration of historic buildings, the trust would be unlikely to cut corners in the interests of quick profit, but would return buildings to something of their original state of beauty and order, with the appropriate craftsmanship and quality of detailing, considerably enhancing amenity (in planning terms) and returning something magical, and of great and real value to Dumfries and other towns, and the surrounding countryside.