Janice Forsyth

“Rothesay Pavilion is an internationally recognised building of architectural and cultural significance.

As stewards of the building following its planned renaissance, we’re excited for the rejuvenated building to become a social hub and economic multiplier for the community, as well as a catalyst for the creative and digital industries in keeping with its heritage and a magnet for tourists, particularly architectural industrial design enthusiasts and fans of popular music, dance and entertainment.

I have no doubt that architectural fans will come from across the world to see it and be inspired by all its modernist magnificence!”

Janice Forsyth, Award winning journalist, broadcaster and Chair of Rothesay Pavilion Charity.


Image credits: Photos are from the Rothesay Pavilion Heritage Officer’s growing community resource. Renderings are by project architect, Elder & Cannon.

Since its opening in 1938 the Pavilon has always held a special place in the hearts of generations of visitors, holidaymakers and residents alike as a place of stylish entertainment and variety.

However, years of continuous and sustained use, coupled with the pounding  elements of the enviable seafront location, took their toll on this iconic landmark. As a result, Rothesay Pavilion was placed on the ‘buildings at risk’ register in 2010.

Shortly thereafter, the building’s owners – Argyll and Bute Council – launched a plan to rescue and revitalise the Pavilion, simultaneously pump priming efforts  to enhance and actively promote the island’s unique heritage and multiple tourist attractions to a worldwide audience.

So began a multi million pound investment programme with support from the Scottish Government and national funding bodies to transform the 1938 building into a flexible, multi purpose entertainment, business and events venue, creative industries incubator and community hub.

Always intended to boost business and deliver multiple benefits, including vital pathways to next generation learning and career opportunities for young people and families, unfortunately the unprecedented and unforeseen consequences of a worldwide pandemic put the main contractor into administration and a halt on the restoration.

 The impact of the EU Exit, war in Ukraine and extraordinary price inflation have now put the costs of completing the Pavilion  way beyond the resources of any one local authority or charity.

An additional £15M is needed to transform this magnificent, Bauhaus inspired, 20th Century landmark building into a modern day interconnected 21st century engine for  community wealth and island economic regeneration.

Further investment support is being pursued to complete this stunning restoration. We are asking our colleagues, friends and you to help to spread the word about  far and wide to help  preserve this unique piece of Scotland’s rich history and heritage, and make sure that Rothesay Pavilion is brought back to life for future generations to come.

  • 49% 49%
  • The fundraising target… 49% 49%

(Read our case for support here)

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We’ve asked our friends and fellow artists to help spread the word to help us reach our target. Please join them and ask your friends around the world to spread the word. #hifivebute


“Rothesay Pavilion is an A listed building of national and international architectural importance.”


With its glorious views overlooking Rothesay’s stunning coastline, pleasure gardens and promenade, the Pavilion’s soaring presence and comprehensive footprint comprising ballroom, conference and entertainment hall represent a tangible expression of Bute’s vibrant social and economic past. The building’s bold design heralded its brave ambitions and bright future as one of Scotland’s premier 19th century holiday resorts. In sharp contrast to the island’s more prominent Gothic and Victorian architecture, the Pavilion’s modern, futuristic style influenced contemporary artists, architects and designers, who were at that time experimenting with the fusion of fine art and industrial design. Their radical ideas and social democratic practice had developed following the post-World War One turmoil of social and industrial change, inspired by the ideal that art and design can create positive social impact on an industrial scale.