A landscape transformed
Dargavel Dental Care is at the heart of a new and thriving community in the west of Scotland
Around 15 miles west of Glasgow, an extraordinary transformation of the Scottish landscape is under way. Where there was once a Royal Ordnance Factory, spread over 2,400 acres, there is now a growing community. Dargavel Village is an award-winning, multi-million pound development being built on the former munitions site and is one of the UK’s largest, privately funded brownfield regeneration projects.
When complete in 2034, it will be home to 4,000 new houses, a business park, new primary school, community centre, retail and commercial units, leisure facilities and a community woodland park.
Since the factory ceased operations in 2008, the site’s owners BAE Systems, has been working closely with Renfrewshire Council, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, and Scottish Natural Heritage to transform the site. Dargavel Village gets its name from Dargavel House, a Grade B listed ‘Tower House’ building situated within the grounds of the complex and dating back to 1514.
After three years of land remediation, construction began on the site in January 2013. Now, more than six years into the transformation, more than 1,000 households are enjoying the benefits of the development.
BAE’s vision for Dargavel Village is to create an aspirational place for people to live and work and, in 2018, it won the the ‘Place’ category of the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning and a winner of the ‘Excellence in Planning for Homes – Large Schemes’ category at the prestigious Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2019.
Last year saw the completion of further supporting infrastructure and the opening of the first phase of the retail park in the village centre. It is here that Dr Philip Byrne, owner of Erskine Dental Care, has opened his latest practice, Dargavel Dental Care.
“It’s a tremendous opportunity to be part of a thriving community,” said Philip, who qualified from Glasgow University in 2002 and completed a Diploma in Implant Dentistry from Newcastle University in 2017. At Erskine, Philip is responsible for implant and CT scan referrals and mentors referral practices in implant restoration. Dr Arlene McGuire, owner of Linwood Dental Care, who qualified from Glasgow University in 2010, also provides facial aesthetics for all three practices. Arlene is currently studying for an MSc in professional non-surgical aesthetic medicine at Newcastle University, having passed her first year with distinction.
“We are so lucky to be part of this massive project which is transforming the area and we really want to be at the heart of the community”Laura Paterson
Dargavel has two fully equipped surgeries, providing mainly NHS care; though there is a variety of private options available should patients choose. The practice comprises Dr Katie Crawford, who has a special interest in restorative dentistry and is active in charitable work (visiting Malawi and completing a dental project in Sydney), Dr Pamela Dickson, who completed her MJDF examinations in London last year, Dr Matthew Doswell, who is completing sedation training in London, and Dr Ryan Jenkins, currently studying towards his Post Graduate Clinical Diploma in Orthodontics.
“Philip and Arlene are amazing employers sending staff on various courses,” said Laura Paterson, practice manager at Dargavel, “including, Scottish Enterprise leadership and management, dental sedation, dental radiography, implant training, trainee dental nursing, and SVQ business administration at SCQF Level 6. As manager, I want all my staff to be fulfilled in their job roles; able to progress their skills and have new opportunities throughout their career.”
Work to fit out the location at Dargavel began last summer, and the practice has been open since October. The team has benefitted from fantastic support and services provided by pckwikfix, the Glasgow-based IT consultancy, SDI, the specialist dental materials supplier, Acteon, the dental equipment and products group, Belmont, the dental chair maker, and Dental Sky, the dental supply company.
“It’s been a massive undertaking opening a new practice with no patients. However, with some marketing, social media, and word of mouth we are already seeing a bright future,” said Laura. “We are aiming for family centred NHS care, providing high quality dentistry that our patients can rely on at all times. We want to help each of our valued patients look after and make the most of their smile through general and cosmetic dental treatments in a safe, clean and comfortable environment. “We want to be the local NHS dentist that the residents know and look forward to coming back to see. It’s a beautiful village with the nicest patients. We are so lucky to be part of this massive project which is transforming the area and we really want to be at the heart of the community.”