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Gift Shop/takeaway With Owners Accommodation In Helmsdale For Sale

Helmsdale, Highland, UK
Asking Price:
Available on request
Net Profit:
Available on request

• Charming takeaway (burger van) and craft / gift shop situated by the harbour in the historic fishing village of Helmsdale.

• Prominent trading location in a splendid coastal setting within a popular tourist destination.

• Simple takeaway operation (burger van), with sales areas found in conservatory and first floor (The Secret Loft).

• Newly developed owner’s accommodation on the ground floor comprising a master bedroom with en-suite, lounge, kitchen plus further development of a second bedroom / en-suite to be completed in the near future.

• Ample on-road parking and external seating area to the front aspects.

Property Information



Living Accommodation:

The vendor has recently developed part of the ground floor to provide private accommodation for owners. This space currently comprises a lounge, kitchen and bedroom, there are plans in place to also include an additional en-suite bedroom. If desired, there is further development potential to convert the first floor into private accommodation. Should this be of interest to new owners, the ground floor unit could be converted back to use as a sales area.

The spaces within the ground floor accommodation are configured as follows;
Lounge - 4.4m x 5.4m into recess
Kitchen - 3.5m x 5.2m into recess
Master Bedroom - 3.7m x 4.6m
En-suite - 1.6m x 3.3m
Conservatory - 4.4m x 3.3m
Second bedroom (under development) - 2.8m x 4.5m


Helmsdale is a Sutherland coastal village steeped in history and with a strong maritime tradition. The village boasts a good level of local amenities for both visitors and residents. The area has an association with Viking history and attracts a great many tourists. The village is renowned for its gold panning at Kildonan and The Garrison has the permits for anyone wishing to have a day out gold panning and also sells / hires out equipment. The Timespan visitor attraction depicts the regions diverse history. The village has approximately 750 inhabitants and is one of the main centres of population in Sutherland. It also has an excellent links golf course and is in easy reach of the famous course at Royal Dornoch which lies to the south. The region is also renowned for its whisky production, with distilleries in Brora, Wick and Tain.

Slightly further afield the Falls of Shin and Dunrobin Castle provide an interesting day out. Touring and genealogy are other favourite pastimes, together with the prospect to visit nearby Scottish castles and other historic sites. These attractions combined with the varied natural scenic beauty of the surrounding area make it highly popular with a wide range of visitors and tourists. For the outdoor enthusiast the Highlands of Scotland are famous for spectacular scenery and rugged mountains, a reputation which is comfortably upheld by Helmsdale. The wonderful un-spoilt scenery of the famous coastline and surrounding hills combine to make this a most attractive area.

For walkers the beautiful Sutherland terrain offers varied degrees of challenge from the more leisurely hillwalking to more stretching mountaineering. A wide range of birdlife attracts the ornithologist and the area has a huge appeal to the naturalist. The local rivers appeal to large numbers of sports fishermen looking to net trout or salmon. Additionally, in the vicinity there are many self-catering accommodation providers, hotels and guest houses whose patrons in-turn generate trade for all the services supported by The Garrison.

Premises Details:

The Garrison is a quirky lifestyle business set within a semi-detached harbour front property, dating from the mid-1800s. Set in an easy-to-locate trading position within the village of Helmsdale, the takeaway and shop benefit from a stunning coastal outlook. The spacious first floor is divided into two halves, the first area being the shop (The Secret Loft) 42.10m² and the second half is utilised as a large workshop area (39.37 m²).

The building has undergone recent development to include an accommodation unit on the ground floor. Currently comprising a modern kitchen, lounge and bedroom, the vendor is also adding a further en-suite bedroom. This space could be used for resident operators or as letting accommodation. Should new owners wish to convert the first floor into accommodation, the ground floor could be utilised as additional sales area. This was the original function of the ground floor prior to its development into owners’ quarters.

Currently operating year-round, the business generates income mainly from the sale of beverages and snacks but is becoming a more established destination venue for those looking for crafts, gifts, or that quirky item from the upcycled or second-hand section. The current owner operates 5 days a week from 10am – 2pm through personal choice. There is a demand from local residents and the influx of tourists during the main season (Apr – Oct) meaning there is scope to trade to a higher level. Within the main season there may also be demand for opening 7 days a week, plus an evening meal service or an increase in the range of catering options available. The business is located on the North Coast 500 which is drawing an increasing number of visitors to the Highlands.

The property
The building is a 2-storey property of stone construction under a front to back slope roof dating from the mid-1800s. From a prominent roadside location adjacent to the harbour, the business has a prominent and well-signed frontage with street level access. Customers enter the conservatory sales area through French doors, there is a further door to the far end that leads into the private owners accommodation, which currently comprises a kitchen, lounge and bedroom with plans to extend the space to include a further en-suite bedroom. The first floor area is used as a sales space (The Secret Loft) and also large workshop; the approximate area is 111m2. Access to this is via external concrete steps to the side of the main building. There is scope to convert the first floor into private accommodation should new owners desire. A new roof was installed on the property in 2019.

The Garrison is a substantial property with a large footprint. The subjects extend towards the full frontage of the whole building and there are tables and chairs for customer use to the front. The subjects are bounded by a stone wall to the front elevation. Customer parking is by public spaces immediately opposite the burger van; there is private parking to the rear.

The property benefits from mains electricity, water and drainage. The business is fully fire compliant, meets all environmental health requirements and has Wi-Fi.

Business Operation

Reasons for selling:

The building was purchased by the vendor in 2016 and it is due to a change of family circumstances that brings this desirable business to the market.

Other Information

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Contact Information

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