20 YEARS OF KINKELL BYRE
Wow, can you believe it has been 20 years since we began doing events here at Kinkell? 20 years of amazing couples, corporate events, activity days, incredible suppliers & outstanding staff members. We truly would not be where we are today without each and every one of you. We are entirely grateful for this experience! We decided to ask Sandy, the owner and creator of Kinkell Byre, a few questions about where it all began!
How old were you when you moved to Kinkell?
I was 18 months old when my parents first moved to Kinkell Farm, I moved to London in 1971, married Frippy in 1975 and then moved back up to Scotland in 1978 living near Glasgow. We moved to Kinkell in 1992!
What made you want to turn it into an events venue?
I wanted to do something that made good use of the buildings. The St Andrews Bay, now Fairmont Hotel opening next door offered us an opportunity to get into the corporate events market. At the same time the Kate Kennedy club was showing an interest in holding their Charity May Ball at Kinkell, all of which gave us the impetus to carry out the basic work needed to turn the farm buildings into an events venue – 20 years ago today!
What was the first event you ever did at Kinkell?
We did a few small corporate and private events before we started converting the byre. This included a 21st birthday party when there were still cows in the byre! The first official event we did after converting the byre was the Fife Hunt Ball on 27th April 2003. Since then Fife Hunt Ball has often been held at Kinkell.
Tell us a little bit about the transformation
We did a lot of the conversion ourselves like; painting the floor, pointing the walls, putting in the dance floor and then putting in the toilet block. Our aim was to keep it as authentic as possible but retaining all the rustc features.
Did you have any obstacles and what were they?
When we first opened in 2003 we initially had no permanent toilets and we very quickly realised that no toilets meant no weddings!! We used to use a trailer for our corporate events in the early days! We then created our toilet block in 2005 and it made all the difference!
What would you say has been your best achievement?
This is a really difficult one, but one that comes to mind would be when we were chosen by Visit Scotland to host a Showcase Scotland dinner. They had dinners for groups of DMC’s (Destination Management Consultants) and took them to loads of different places. For this event in particular, they stayed at the Fairmont & Old Course.
This was very early on and it introduced us to a lot of DMC’s who we still work with today!
Did you believe you would be where you are today, 20 years on?
“Laughed” Never in my wildest dreams!