From the archive: RBS land grab

The Scotsman, 13 April 2001

A PRIME development site in Edinburgh which is being sought by the Royal Bank of Scotland as its new world headquarters could be shared with Queen Margaret College. The principal of the college wrote to the bank’s chief executive, Fred Goodwin, urging that the organisations work together so the needs of both can be accommodated. The college’s £30 million bid for the site at Gogarburn was on the table when the bank, buoyed by recent profits of £4.4 billion, weighed in with a £50m bid. Lothian Primary Care NHS Trust, the owner of the land, abruptly broke off negotiations with the college and Miller Ventures, which had planned a new campus on the west Edinburgh site. The college was expected to take legal action against the bank. However, it clearly sees a conciliatory approach as the best way forward, although privately officials are furious they have been “gazumped”.