RGU to support next stage for Greyhope Bay 

Professor Gokay Deveci and Dr Fiona McIntyre (RGU)

ROBERT Gordon University is co-hosting a series of public consultation this week, to expand the Greyhope Bay centre at the Torry Battery in Aberdeen.

A team from the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment, led by Professor Gokay Deveci, is supporting the feasibility study and has created exciting visual concepts to expand the facilities, capacity and programmes of the off grid, eco facility as part of Phase 2 of Greyhope Bay.

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In February, Aberdeen City Council secured an award of £79,506 from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (Community and Place) to help Greyhope Bay establish a feasibility study. strategy and concept design for Phase Two of the project.

Over the past year, local people have put forward ideas to expand Greyhope Bay, with much of the feedback gathered at the centre’s monthly Skipper meetings, which take pace on the last Tuesday of each month.

Professor Gokay Deveci and his colleague, Daria Belkouri, from RGU’s Scott Sutherland School of Architecture & Built Environment have developed these ideas into visuals concepts, and this week, present the ideas at a public consultation meeting on Tuesday 28 November and online on Wednesday 29 November.

It’s hoped the public consultation events will foster engagement from the Greyhope Bay community, and provide a forum to question, share concerns and suggestions to expand the centre at the Torry Battery.

Under the new plans being proposed, both the indoor and outdoor facilities could be expanded to accommodate market stalls, outdoor music, living history events and extra café space. 

A new viewpoint and roof terrace with a star gazing platform could be created. A new kid’s area, sculpture garden, performance space or outdoor amphitheatre could be established alongside a multi-purpose classroom or workshop space. The carpark could also be extended as part of an exciting collage to develop the Greyhope Bay centre. 

Professor Gokay Deveci has been involved in the development of the Greyhope Bay Centre since its inception over ten years ago and has worked closely with Greyhope Bay’s Managing Director, Dr Fiona McIntyre. 

He is now leading discussions with Aberdeen City Council and Historic Scotland to ensure the project meets planning requirements and is actively involved in the public consultation to expand this iconic visitor and community facility. 

Professor Gokay Deveci said: “We are really excited to be leading the feasibility study for Phase 2 of Greyhope Bay’s expansion. Since opening, 18 months ago, Greyhope bay has attracted significant visitor numbers, and has been hugely popular with locals and visitors to Aberdeen. We want to engage the public so that they can help us expand this fantastic community space and are keen to gather as diverse a range of views as possible to help us do this.

“As a University, RGU is committed to supporting the economic, social and cultural development of the region and our support for the Greyhope Bay Centre aligns with our social ethos to stimulate projects that foster community cohesion and social wellbeing. I’m really delighted to be part of the Greyhope Bay expansion and look forward to engaging the public as we move onto the next stage and develop this world class marine experience centre and visitor attraction.” 

Dr Fiona McIntyre, said; “Since opening the Greyhope Bay Centre in April 2022 the huge positive response and high demand has been exciting and has also demonstrated a huge potential for growth as we continue to identify opportunities and needs of the community, and the historic monument within which we reside.

“As we launch Phase 2 of the Greyhope Bay Centre, I’m looking forward to engaging with our wide community of supporters and to working with Professor Gokay and others from the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture at RGU, as we move forward to develop a bright future for the project.”

Local resident, Dorothy Elder, said: ”I’ve been involved with Greyhope Bay Project for approximately five years. I was born and brought up in Torry and I became involved with the project after my husband died. He was also brought up in Torry and was a Trawler Skipper and latterly a Supply Ship Captain. 

“The project has given me a purpose in life and a focus for my time. The Greyhope Bay Project is such an asset for Torry and the wider community of Aberdeen and beyond including visitors coming from all over the world’.’ 

Opening in April 2022, Greyhope Bay has had a hugely positive impact, becoming a key Torry community hub for events such as coffee mornings, litter picks and artist workshops. In its first year, the centre welcomed over 40,000 visitors; hosted 40 creative workshops with over total 2,000 attendees; hosted 20 community groups; and created jobs in order to manage and run the space. 

The centre has also raised £15,000 for community groups including local artists and schools and generated considerable social and economic value for Torry and wider city.

Greyhope Bay was commended in the public category at the Aberdeen Society of Architects Design Awards; has been nominated in the Regeneration Category at the Scottish Design Awards 2023; won to further transform the historic site for the local community’s benefit via the National Lottery’s People’s Projects; and was chosen as one of the best 10 destinations in the UK to visit by the Guardian Newspaper.

Anyone interested in getting involved in the future development of Greyhope Bay and the public consultation, can sign up to the Phase 2 newsletter to get monthly updates, including a report on the monthly Skipper meetings. 

Further consultation meetings are planned for next year with a second version of the designs being presented at the February at the monthly meeting. It’s hoped a full design co-created by the Greyhope Bay community, will be presented in April to co-incide with the 2ndanniversary of the opening of the Greyhope Bay Centre. 

To find out more visit, Greyhope Bay or on Facebook.

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