Aberdeenshire Council

Aden Country Park is a much loved area of stunning natural beauty with a wide diversity of features, habitats and woodlands covering over 90 hectares of Aberdeenshire countryside. Not just a peaceful leisure space for rest and relaxation, Aden Country Park is also a vital community hub and resource, home and host to natural, architectural, cultural and archaeological heritage, as well as a range of attractions, facilities and events. A successful first round application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund aimed to enhance, promote, and conserve Aden’s rich cultural, architectural, archaeological and natural heritage, creating a sustainable, high-quality visitor destination for present and future generations to enjoy.

 Jura Consultants was engaged to support the development phase and resulting second round application to the HLF. The commission included the completion of a Business Plan, Activity Plan and funder specific advice related to the application process and Heritage Fund assessment site visit. Working closely with the client team, stakeholders and landscape architect Jura Consultants aided the development proposals for the £2 million project. The Business Plan developed the understanding of existing and future visitor numbers, implemented an extensive consultation process, reviewed governance and operating structures and supported the internal investment case in relation to future management and sustainability. The Activity Plan created a detailed and costed programme of learning and participation activities that will enhance the visitor experience, sustainably increase the visitor numbers and expand upon the range of audiences engaging with the heritage of the park through opportunities for volunteering, community participation, audience development, interpretation, training and learning. Aberdeenshire Council received a second round award of £1.25 million in September 2018.


Economic Assessment of Café, Retail and Conference Facility Options

The National Library of Scotland is the country’s largest library and world centre for the study of Scotland and the Scots. The Library celebrates its centenary in 2025. The organisation has ambitious plans to transform its public spaces and position itself as one of Europe’s leading National Libraries by this time. Jura Consultants’ role was to conduct a high level financial appraisal for development opportunities in relation to catering, retail and conference/ meetings/ events facilities. Our study focus was the Library’s main site at George IV Bridge in Edinburgh, but also exploring opportunities at its current administrative space on the Royal Mile. We considered a range of options for each of these three functions varying in terms of location across the two buildings, facility size and type of offer/ experience. Options were shaped by our assessment of the Library’s current performance and challenges faced at present and by our appraisal of the market potential for each function. This included competitor and comparator analysis. Options were assessed individually in terms of their income generating potential but also in terms of their wider impact/ adjacencies. It was critical that this holistic perspective was adopted, acknowledging that each individual investment is part of a wider masterplan for the site and cannot be determined in isolation. This included consideration of functions/ services beyond the direct scope of this study, specifically the Library’s public engagement accommodation. This methodology enabled the study team to identify the optimum development package for café, retail and conference/ meetings events with key implications and considerations for the wider masterplan highlighted. The results of the study will inform the next stage of project development, specifically the brief for an architect-led feasibility study.





Jura Consultants were commissioned to undertake a desk-based visitor market appraisal, and a desk based accommodation appraisal to inform strategic decisions regarding Armadale’s Castle’s future as a visitor attraction, and additional income generation opportunities. The visitor market appraisal included volume of visitor markets (local, day visitor and tourist), and the patterns of behaviour for each where available. It also included an analysis of competitor and comparator attractions. The market appraisal was used to establish the potential visitor market for the Estate, and to identify critical investment in the visitor experience to achieve the visitor number potential. The forecast also identified the impact of seasonality on the pattern of visitation through the year, and the potential impact on income from admission.

An appraisal of the accommodation market on Skye was also undertaken, with an audit taken of the current provision, and market insights including seasonality used to assess the potential of the proposed new and enhanced accommodation offer at Armadale Estate. Outline income projections were then created for potential development at the site.



Historic Scotland

Historic Scotland is Scotland’s lead agency for the historic environment. Created through the redevelopment of a landmark disused historic building in Stirling, the Engine Shed will be a world-leading centre for technical building conservation. The purpose of the Engine Shed is to raise standards for traditional buildings, broaden awareness of the importance of traditional materials and skills and develop those skills to ensure a sustainable future for Scotland’s historic environment. It will be a unique national and international hub for technical conservation providing training and engagement opportunities on-site and also working in collaboration with and signposting the work of partners across the conservation sector. The Engine Shed will target a range of audiences from the general public to professionals within the sector in its attempts to raise awareness and standards across the industry.

Jura Consultants was commissioned to assist Historic Scotland in the development of an Activity Plan and Business Plan for a Round 2 submission to the Heritage Lottery Fund. A key element of this commission was working with Historic Scotland to deliver an extensive programme of consultation with internal and external stakeholder groups and the general public conducted through a combination of presentations, focus groups, workshops and surveys. This process not only informed audiences about the project but also enabled Historic Scotland and the project team to engage in a dialogue with the target audiences ensuring their views, needs and requirements were reflected in the ultimate scope, nature and activities of the Engine Shed. In November 2014 Historic Scotland was awarded £3.8 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund towards the £8.9 million project. The Engine Shed officially opened to the public in June 2017.



University of Edinburgh

St Cecilia’s Hall Museum of Instruments is home to the world famous collections of early keyboard and plucked strings, part of Edinburgh University Collection of Historic Musical Instruments (EUCHMI). It is the oldest purpose-built concert hall in Scotland, and the second oldest in the Britain. At the heart of this Georgian building is its concert room, surrounded by three galleries which house one of the world's most important collections of musical heritage, with many of its instruments still playable in a concert setting.

The University of Edinburgh aimed to redevelop the museum to establish a bespoke home for the University’s Collection of musical instruments. As part of a funding application to the Heritage Lottery Fund, Jura Consultants was commissioned by the University of Edinburgh to assist with both the Round 1 and Round 2 HLF applications. Our involvement included Activity Plan and Business Plan development informed by an in-depth programme of audience research and analysis. The latter included a series of focus group research with current users of St Cecilia’s Hall, a survey with the general public including non-visitors, interviews with exhibition visitors and interviews with key staff and stakeholders. Having attained a Round 1 HLF pass and development grant of £76,500 in December 2012, the project secured a grant award of £823,500 March 2014.



Sir Walter Scott Courthouse

In 2014, Jura Consultants were commissioned by Scottish Borders Council to prepare a Business Plan and Outline Activity Plan for the Sir Walter Scott’s Court House Redevelopment Project in Selkirk in the Scottish Borders. The Court House lies within the heart of the town and was built on the initiative of Sir Walter Scott, the famous writer and Sheriff for the area. As part of this work, Jura Consultants supported the client in developing the project further from an initial options appraisal and feasibility study prepared by LDN Architects.  Jura Consultants, working with LDN Architects, developed initial proposals that addressed the key ambitions of the council with regard transforming the Court House into a successful visitor destination within the region and in conjunction with nearby Abbotsford, Sir Walter Scott’s residence, while also establishing the property as a community focal point. Jura Consultants subsequently facilitated public consultation on these proposals. Two open days were held at the Court House, where members of the public could review current proposals, make comments and provide further suggestions. Jura Consultants and members of the client team were available to answer questions. While the aim of the open day was to capture qualitative insights, demographic data was also collected in such a way that enabled analysis of comments on the basis of contributors’ characteristics such as age, residency and whether they had children. The client team used materials provided by Jura Consultants for further public consultation, which was analysed by Jura Consultants. Jura Consultants also developed, managed and analysed visitor surveys as Abbotsford, to test proposals for the visitor experience at the Court House, and how this may link in with the offer at Abbotsford. Following analysis of the consultation results, Jura Consultants prepared a Business Plan and an Activity Plan that brought the council’s library service, contact centre and museum service together within the Court House to offer community services that are integrated with a strong visitor and heritage offer.



Sutton’s Hospital in the Charterhouse

The Charterhouse is an ancient charity founded in 1611 located in the beautiful setting of a former Carthusian monastery within the City of London. The charity today provides accommodation and care for retired, single elderly gentlemen known as Brothers. The Revealing the Charterhouse Project is designed to provide greatly increased public access, enjoyment and understanding to/of the Charterhouse site, a remarkable assembly of historic buildings dating from the 14th century, and to/of the collections owned by the Charterhouse and relevant collections owned by the Museum of London. The new presentation will tell the story of the site since the middle ages, right up to the present. A museum exhibition will be established on site curated by the Museum of London. Additionally, more of the building will be opened to visitors through new guided tours and a learning programme.

Jura Consultants was commissioned to work with the project steering group and a range of partners and consultants to develop both the Round 1 and Round 2 bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund. This included a detailed visitor market appraisal, an on-street survey targeting potential users, review of interpretation and activity plans, development of the business case, and coordination of the Round 1 and Round 2 applications . The Revealing the Charterhouse project received a grant award £1.5 million in March 2013.



Scottish Borders Council

The Great Tapestry of Scotland is currently Scotland’s largest community-arts project. Devised by internationally renowned author Alexander McCall-Smith in 2010, the Tapestry was sewn by over 1,000 stitchers aged from 4 to 94 working in local groups across the country. The completed artwork was launched at the Scottish Parliament in September 2013, attracting over 30,000 visitors. In 2013, Jura Consultants completed a Feasibility Study for Scottish Borders Council examining the possibility of providing a permanent home for the Tapestry. We were subsequently appointed, in conjunction with a multi-disciplinary design team, to provide a detailed business case for a new visitor centre to be located in the Scottish Borders. The project required full market appraisals of various possible sites, examined the potential for income generation, and considered the potential governance, management and staffing structure. We also provided a thorough financial appraisal, assessed the potential economic impact, and conducted a risk assessment.

The business case informed the decision by the Scottish Government and Scottish Borders Council to commit funding of £2.5 million and £3.5 million respectively to the development of the project in December 2014.



South Ayrshire Council

Jura Consultants was part of a multi-disciplinary consultancy team delivering a Scottish government-funded charrette exploring the development potential for Maybole, South Ayrshire. Concentrating on the tourism development potential for Maybole, Jura Consultants held a workshop session with local business representatives, councillors and members of the local community as well as drop in surgeries throughout the four day consultation and development process. Here we explored the key issues facing Maybole’s tourism sector, the potential for tourism development and how these could complement other development priorities participants identified for the town and discussed with other specialists in our team. This concerned areas such as transport, health, housing and recreation and acknowledged the opportunities and constraints each development area posed on the other. The output of the intense consultation programme was the development of an overall development strategy for Maybole within which the recommended tourism strategy was firmly embedded. This was presented to the local community on the final day of the charrette providing the opportunity for immediate feedback and discussion.



Bath Abbey

In 2014, Bath Abbey received a first round pass from Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the Bath Abbey Footprint project.  This £19.3m project restores the collapsing floor of the Abbey, creates an interpretive exhibition and new multi-use spaces that support the Abbey’s activities, and provides for the first time public toilets within the Abbey.  The project also improves the visitor circulation and the visitor experience overall. Jura Consultants was appointed to write the detailed Business Plan for the Second Round application to HLF, following HLF’s guidelines and meeting its requirements.  We worked as part of a multi-disciplinary team, supporting the client in further testing aspirations and determining the details of the project during its Development Phase. We provided a full financial assessment of the impact of the Abbey’s partial closure during project delivery on income and produced revenue budgets for the six years after project completion.



National Galleries of Scotland       

The National Galleries of Scotland embarked on a £15.3 million project to redevelop and redisplay the Scottish Collection gallery within the Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh. Jura Consultants were commissioned to support both the First and Second Round applications to the Heritage Lottery Fund.  A key part of the first commission was to undertake extensive audience research to understand the profile, motivations and needs of both existing audiences and current non-visitors.  This research used a multi-method approach, including face-to-face and online quantitative surveys with visitors and non-visitors, as well as focus groups with existing visitors.  The research informed project development, and here particularly approaches to content and visitor experience, including activity programming. Working in close collaboration with key senior members of staff, Jura Consultants assisted in the preparation of an outline activity plan for the project. Jura Consultants also provided advice on business planning and the application process. Upon receiving  a First Round pass from Heritage Lottery Fund for funding of £4.94 million, Jura Consultants was re-commissioned during the Development Phase of the project to provide evaluation analysis for activities, further research with non-visitors, and formative evaluation of exhibition designs. In addition, Jura Consultants wrote an Evaluation Plan for the project and provided on-going project development support and HLF advice. In June 2016, the project received a Second Round pass from Heritage Lottery Fund for funding of £4.94 million.



Greyhope Bay Ltd

Greyhope Bay is located immediately south of Aberdeen Harbour and is a prime position from which to view some of the city’s most iconic visitors – the dolphins. Greyhope Bay Limited has been created to explore the feasibility of creating a world class destination at Greyhope Bay to deliver marine science education to a diverse range of audiences. A wide variety of other facilities and activities will be considered to support the creation of a vibrant and dynamic space contributing to the economic and social development of Aberdeen City and Shire. Jura Consultants were commissioned to assist with the development of the concept and to prepare an outline business case to support the further development of the project.



Courtauld Institute of Art

The Courtauld Institute of Art is a world class teaching institution allied to one of the most outstanding art collections in Britain. It has recently secured a £9.4million Round 1 pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for Phase One of Courtauld Connects, a £32million transformational programme which will focus on improving public access to and engagement with the Courtauld Institute’s art collection and built heritage, its conservation work and teaching, both in Somerset House and nationally.

Jura Consultants are currently worked with The Courtauld Institute of Art to develop and produce a compelling Business Plan in support of the successful Round 2 HLF application, which will contribute to securing the capital investment to deliver the project. The Business Plan will present a viable and sustainable future for the organisation following the transformational capital development project as well as considering the financial and wider resource implications of further development. The Business Plan will also fully explore and plan for the requirements of delivering the project, including the financial implications of the ‘transition phase’, i.e. impact on income generation and cost centres during construction works and the period when HLF revenue funding is being utilised. This work was completed alongside the production of an Activity Plan, which Jura Consultants were also commissioned for, whichinformed the user market potentials.



City of Edinburgh Council

Since the early 1900s Saughton Park has been a hugely popular tourist destination and local amenity within the City of Edinburgh. Created in the grounds of Saughtonhall House, the 1908 Scottish National Exhibition initially financed new park entrances, a footpath network, sporting facilities, a bandstand, and a winter garden and botanical garden. At that time in a nine month period 3.5 million paying customers were entertained and educated by an array of exhibitions, attractions, recreations and amusements. However, over the course of the last century the park deteriorated in quality and as such now falls short of a number of defining characteristics and design features. Jura Consultants supported the City of Edinburgh Council in their second round application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for £3.8million towards the £5.4 million project, developing a Visitor Services Business Plan for the park and supporting the consultation work that contributed to the Activity Plan. This study also involved close working with the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society (the Caley) to develop plans and establish how the Caley will be permanently based at the park. HLF Funding was awarded in early 2016, for a comprehensive restoration project that will also provide a range of new visitor facilities that will return the park to its former glory. Work is due to take place on site for a year from Summer 2017.    



Abbotsford Trust

Abbotsford is a Grade A listed building designed and built by Sir Walter Scott (1771 -1832) on the banks of the River Tweed in the Scottish Borders. In May 2004 the last of Sir Walter Scott’s direct descendants to occupy the House died and it is now in the hands of the Abbotsford Trust.

Jura Consultants supported the Abbotsford Trust in the development of a project which has transformed the site into a world class heritage attraction. The project involved the delivery of a new visitor reception building (incorporating café, retail and introductory exhibition), enhanced interpretation, conservation works to the collections and historic buildings, landscape improvements, and high quality self-catering guest accommodation in the part of the house.

With support from the Scottish Government, Scottish Borders Council, Historic Scotland and Scottish Enterprise the project attracted some £9million of funding. Jura Consultants commenced work with the Trust in 2007 supporting the development of the HLF Application materials. Since then Jura Consultants project managed the development of both the Round 1 and Round 2 HLF applications. We also prepared a detailed Business Plan and developed the Activity Plan for the project.


National Museums of Scotland

Jura Consultants has worked closely with National Museums Scotland (NMS) supporting the coordination and development of capital projects across its portfolio. The National Museum of Scotland is now one of the most visited attraction outside London and Jura Consultants worked with NMS to develop a 15 year £80million Masterplan and each phase of delivery.

The Royal Museum Project was the largest phase in the Masterplan transforming the interior architecture of the Museum and enabling the rediscovery and display of NMS’s outstanding Natural World and World Cultures collections. Completed in 2011 the project enabled the display of 100% more objects, created 16 new galleries, enlarged the temporary exhibition space, increased public spaces and increased facilities for learning by 300%. Jura Consultants provided strategic advice and assistance with the development of the Masterplan and prepared an audience development plan to support applications to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The project secured a grant of £14.8million towards the £44.5million project.

The following phase focused on NMS’s internationally significant Science & Technology and Art & Design collections developing ten further gallery spaces. The project aimed to sustain and build upon the success of the RMP. Jura Consultants assisted NMS with both rounds of the HLF application process. Our role included bid coordination, activity planning and business plan support. A collaborative approach was adopted working closely with key client representatives and also a market research company for in-depth audience consultation. With significant audience development objectives, devising an innovative and engaging yet sustainable programme of activity was key. Following an award £4.85million in June 2014 the completed galleries opened in July 2016.

Most recently, Jura Consultants assisted NMS prepare a Round 1 HLF application for the creation of two further galleries focusing on its world-class collections relating to ancient Egypt, China, Japan and Korea. We provided ongoing advice as well as assistance with the preparation of the application form and supporting documents. Revealing Cultures will complete the Masterplan, attaining a Round 1 HLF pass in spring 2016.

Whilst working on the various phases of the Masterplan, we also assisted NMS to secure HLF funding support for the restoration and enhancement of two Category B listed hangars at the National Museum of Flight, phase two in a transformational development plan for the site. Our role included project coordination, business planning and activity planning. The redeveloped National Museum of Flight opened in 2016 delivering a significantly enhanced, innovative, world-class visitor experience enabling a greater understanding and appreciation of the aviation collections, the hangars and the entire historic airfield site.

Simultaneous to our involvement with the National Museum of Scotland and National Museum of Flight, we also assisted NMS devise a strategic investment programme the overall estate. This programme considered the needs of the buildings and collections combined with funding opportunities for each project, acknowledging funding received to date and ‘funder fit’ of subsequent developments, setting out a road map for capital development across the next ten years



Royal Zoological Society of Scotland

Jura Consultants adopted the lead role in a multi-disciplinary team exploring the future development options for the Highland Wildlife Park (HWP) and aiding them in applying for Heritage Lottery Funding. The HWP is owned by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) who in 2006 took the decision to diversify HWP’s previously native wildlife collections to include international species suited to cold climate and tundra habitats befitting the HWP’s Cairngorms National Park setting. This diversification, and successful breeding programmes borne from this, has led to an exponential increase in visit numbers establishing the HWP as one of Scotland’s top 20 paid visitor attractions. During this period however there has been little investment in the site facilities and infrastructure causing significant operational difficulties and constraining future growth. The HWP and Edinburgh Zoo, also owned by RZSS, are key for the delivery of public engagement activity and for the generation of revenue that sustains the charity’s vital national and international conservation work. Renewal of the HWP is required in order for it to achieve its potential and thus continue to support RZSS in the delivery of its charitable objectives.

Working closely with RZSS and HWP staff, our study team including LDN Architects, Optimised Environments, Campbell & Co, Gardiner & Theobald, Irons Foulner and Andrew Carrie Traffic & Transportation has developed a Masterplan which sets out a deliverable series of interventions capable of unlocking the HWP’s significant potential as an international exemplar of wildlife conservation and top 10 Scottish visitor attraction. At the heart of the Masterplan is the aim to foster a deeper connection between people and nature inspiring a change in attitudes and behaviour towards wildlife and landscape stewardship. The resultant Masterplan evolved through the course of the study responding to our research and analysis findings, which included a series of meetings and workshops with RZSS and HWP staff and in-depth comparator analysis including a field trip visit to Nordens Ark, a Swedish wildlife park renowned for its conservation credentials. The Masterplan balances the project’s conservation aspirations, the need for a sustainable ongoing business model and a deliverable programme of development. A phased approach to delivery has been identified and Jura Consultants aided the park in a Round One application to the Heritage Lottery fund including the creation of an Activity and Business Plan. The RZSS Board has approved the initial phase and is keen to explore subsequent phases in further detail



Aberdeen Art Gallery

Aberdeen Art Galley is the premier cultural destination in north east Scotland and its collections are of international significance, standing and quality. However, the buildings within which this collection was housed were inadequate and failed to provide 21st century standards of visitor care. Jura Consultants worked with Aberdeen Art Gallery to develop proposals for the £30 million redevelopment of the gallery complex. Encompassing the Art Gallery building, War Memorial Hall and Cowdray Hall this transformational project will enhance the physical, interpretive and emotional connections between the spheres of art, heritage and music inspiring a new depth of engagement with and appreciation of Aberdeen Art Gallery’s highly significant collection and heritage.

Our role included preparation of an Activity Plan, a Business Plan, and support to develop Round 1 and Round 2 applications to the Heritage Lottery Fund. A programme of extensive consultation with existing visitors and non-visitors was carried out to support the Activity Plan which resulted in the creation of an innovative activity programme designed to inspire existing and new visitors through arts and music engagement. Audience segmentation analysis was an important aspect of the activity planning process identifying key target audiences from which an engagement strategy was borne.

We also facilitated a number of workshops with gallery staff over the course of the Round 1 and Round 2 application development. Feedback from the consultation process was used to develop and refine the scope of the project so that it meets the aspirations of the gallery and its visitors, while fitting with the requirements of HLF and other funding bodies. We worked closely with the design team for the project to ensure that the capital project responds to the issues identified in the research. The project achieved a Round 1 pass from HLF in April 2013 and successfully secured a grant award of £10 million passing the Round 2 stage in October 2014.  The transformed Aberdeen Art Gallery re-opens in 2018



English Heritage

Kenwood House is an 18th century villa designed by Robert Adam, set within the parkland of Hampstead Heath. The property is managed by English Heritage and houses a collection of masterpieces by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Gainsbourgh and Turner.

Jura Consultants prepared a business plan for the project, to support their Round 2 submission for £3.9million to the Heritage Lottery Fund. The project received a successful Round 2 award in March 2012. The project sought to make significant repairs to the property, particularly to its roof, as well as improve the visitor experience and broaden the appeal of Kenwood House to a wider audience. 



Auckland Castle Trust

The Auckland Castle Trust (ACT) aspires to stimulate social and economic regeneration within the town of Bishop Auckland and beyond through heritage-led regeneration. The £17 million restoration and development of Auckland Castle is the centrepiece in a suite of projects planned by ACT and catalyst for this regeneration.The Auckland Castle Redevelopment will transform this internationally significant 800-year old Bishop’s Palace from an unknown private dwelling into a thriving major heritage attraction supported by an extensive activity programme. The ambitious restoration, re-interpretation and development of the Castle and Chapel will explore the story of the Prince Bishops (with the Trust’s collection of Zurbaran paintings as the focal point) and will explore the history of faith and religion in Britain across 11 new galleries.


Jura Consultants assisted ACT develop its Business Plan and Activity Plan in support of its Round 2 Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) application. Working in collaboration with Yellow Book Ltd, we also completed an Evaluation Framework providing ACT with a mechanism to monitor the nature and extent of socio-economic impact delivered by the project. This included completing a baseline analysis informed by qualitative and quantitative research methods comprising statistical analysis, audience consultation and economic impact assessment. This evidence in turn influenced the development of the Round 2 submission, the Activity Plan in particular. ACT secured a grant of £9 million from HLF in May 2015 – one of the largest grants ever awarded to the region.