Gowanbank is situated in the Irvine Valley, near the village of Darvel in Ayrshire. Gowanbank House is a remarkable gift given to SU Scotland in 2017. With 45 beds in 10 en-suite bedrooms, it is ideal for schools, youth groups and churches to use for their weekend away or residential. For more information, do check out the Gowanbank website.

Pre-COVID, Gowanbank hosted a number of youth groups, our own SU groups, church weekends, training events, SU Holidays and some schools for their study / music residentials. We were about to welcome 20 P7’s for their Classroom Outdoor residential programme when COVID stopped them in their tracks. Despite the disappointment of having to postpone their event, Gowanbank have been creative in doing ministry over lockdown by hosting some missionary families, when regulations allowed, and offering activity days to local youth groups, Ayrshire SU & local churches, where possible.

Gowanbank is ideal for engaging new schools and groups from the west of Scotland. As we look forward to recovery, we need your support in reaching out to the children and young people of Scotland. Please would you consider joining our team support programme by giving on a regular basis or making a one-off donation to support the work at Gowanbank? Thank you to those who have already signed up to give to the work of Gowanbank. Thank you for partnering with us.

You can make a gift on this page or read more below.

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A place of belonging and community...

The vision of Gowanbank is to become a place of belonging and community where people feel ‘at home’. We aim to serve a wide range of children and young people through a number of programmes that build relationships and support the ministry of SU Scotland, as well as creating an environment where people can learn about and reflect on what God has done for them. Situated within ten miles of Kilmarnock, Gowanbank is ideal for engaging new schools and groups from the west of Scotland, and it offers a homely environment for young leader training and family-focused breaks.


Built in 1890, Gowanbank has a rich local heritage...

Darvel (and the Irvine Valley) was once the epicentre of a world-famous textile industry which at its height served Buckingham Palace, Downing Street and the Prince of Monaco. The innovator behind this industrial boom was Alexander Morton, the original owner of Gowanbank.

Morton was a true rags-to-riches success. Growing up in a single parent, working class household, Alexander worked hard, sharing his wealth and success with other mill owners, his family, his employees and the community. He gifted the clock for the church tower, hosted regular garden parties for the community at Gowanbank, and apparently, was the world expert on the pansy!

When you visit Gowanbank make sure you have a look at the monument of Morton just outside the grounds. I am sure he would be delighted with our plans for his family home, so generously given to SU Scotland.

SU Ayrshire

Gowanbank is home to the SU Ayrshire team..

Gowanbank is also home to the SU Ayrshire staff team with their office being based there. We work closely with SU Ayrshire in supporting their work through offering Day camps and activity days for the children in Ayrshire, especially over COVID with travel restrictions in place.

Gowanbank have also been supported by the work of the Ayrshire Action Group and Laura has been working between the two during her Gap Year. SU Ayrshire & Gowanbank have also been blessed by the support of many volunteers who have joined the fortnightly prayer meetings on Zoom over lockdown. We would love if you could support the work of Carol Baird and the work of SU Ayrshire.

Check out our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the official Gowanbank website.

Please give generously so this new ministry can continue to flourish.

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