The Braemar Royal Highland Charity (BRHC) wanted to create a sustainable, year-round facility for the annual Braemar Gathering, which would be sensitive to Braemar’s local character, and the spectacular Cairngorms setting.
Centred around conserving and enhancing cultural heritage, the facility would provide new headquarters for the BRHC, cater traditional Scottish food and drink to visitors, and engage with worldwide Games organisers to establish itself as a showcase for all aspects of the cherished Highland Games.
Gordon Mitchell Contractors Ltd were appointed to the project due to our long-standing relationship with the area, as well as The Prince’s Foundation. Providing extensive knowledge and expertise on several past projects has allowed us to develop into a trusted brand within the local community.
The 5,095 ft2 centre combines an exhibition hall, archive, gallery, café and gift shop, as well as housing the official BRHC office. Elegantly furnished, with touches of the Duke of Rothesay tartan, the café has a beautiful outlook on to the grounds of the Princess Royal and Duke of Fife Memorial Park.
This is complemented greatly by the magnificent exhibition and archive which explores the living traditions of the Highland Games, focusing on the Braemar Gathering and its long-standing Royal connections.
Many features within the design, material selection and colourway promoted the Highland heritage, which was an essential aim of the project. The mizzle-green timber cladding, white trim on the architraves and the russet-red corrugated metal roofing were key players in this. The addition of a granite stone base and chimney, all locally sourced within Aberdeenshire, helped to tie the BRHC to the buildings of Braemar.
Internally, a host of notable features also referenced Highland tradition. An impressive display of Douglas Fir hand crafted roof members line the café and hall, along with a stunning painted ceiling within the Gallery to accompany the artefacts.
Sustainability was an important aspect of this build: the structure was constructed of predominantly sustainably sourced timber in the form of a structural post and beam/framed system with timber trusses. All timber material used within the construction was selected from FSC/PEFC source with respect to CNPA LDP 2015 Policy 3: Sustainable Design.
It was an honour to have been so heavily involved in the building of the Royal Highland Games Centre. This niche build allowed us to exercise our passion for craftmanship, display our attention to detail and build upon our company ethos. We are proud to have our name connected to such a staple in the highland community that will be seen and used for generations to come.