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17 March 2016

Funding boost for five historic sites across Scotland

We've announced £650,000 in funding to help restore five historic properties across the country.

Photos showing the past and present states of Kirkcudbright Town Hall.

Over £650,000 awarded to help restore A-Listed Edwardian Mansion, 16th century harbour and old Custom House.

Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has today (17th March) announced over £650,000 worth of funding to help repair historic buildings across the country.

The funding has been awarded to five projects, including Glasgow’s iconic Pollok House, home to a range of outstanding artwork, Cromwell Harbour in Dunbar, and the Old Custom House and viaduct in Dumbarton.

Martin Fairley, Head of Grants at Historic Environment Scotland, Scotland’s new public body for the heritage sector (1) said,

“This scheme is designed to support and highlight Scotland’s diverse historic environment and the contribution it makes to communities up and down the country. We are pleased to be supporting a wide range of projects, and working together with councils, community groups and volunteers amongst others to champion Scotland’s historic buildings – be that through helping to bring them back into use in the case of Kirkcudbright Town Hall or helping to enhance existing tourist attractions like Pollok House in Glasgow.”

The money is awarded as part of the organisation’s Building Repair Grants scheme, which supports repair work to buildings of architectural or historic interest. Priority was given to applicants who demonstrated that investment in their project would result in community benefit. This round of funding, the second since Historic Environment Scotland came into being in October 2015, is divided between projects in Dumbarton, Glasgow, Fife, East Lothian and Dumfries and Galloway.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, said,

“Scotland is home to a range of fascinating historic buildings, and it is vital that we work together to preserve them for future generation, which is why I have committed to maintain the level of funding of funding available through Historic Environment Scotland’s grant schemes.

“This round of investments is as diverse as ever, and includes a custom house on Scotland’s oldest canal, a grand country house in the heart of Glasgow, and an East Lothian harbour with links to Oliver Cromwell. I look forward to seeing how these grants will reinvigorate some wonderful buildings and bring benefits to communities all over Scotland.”

Among the recipients announced today is Glasgow’s iconic Pollok House £260,010 has been awarded to support repair work to the roof of the A-Listed Edwardian Country House, which is managed by the National Trust for Scotland. Pollok House is home to an important collection of Spanish paintings, and the repair work will help to ensure that their future is secure.

The Old Custom House in Dumbarton is also on the list. HES have awarded £273,600 to the Scottish Waterways Trust, which will be used for the external conservation of the Old Custom House - one of the most distinctive buildings on the Forth and Clyde Canal – and the railway viaduct at Bowling Basin. This project forms part of a much wider regeneration scheme in the area, aiming to bring heritage assets back into use.

Meanwhile £50,000 will go to the Dunbar Harbour Trust for structural work at the Cromwell Harbour. Dating back to the late 16th century, this picturesque harbour has links to Oliver Cromwell who funded repairs to the area in the 17th century. Over 250 years later, funding from HES will go towards restructuring the East Pier walls, allowing visitors and locals alike to enjoy the harbour for years to come.

Full list of grant recipients

Side by side old and new photos of Old Custom House, Bowling Basin, in Dumbarton

Old Custom House, Bowling Basin, Dumbarton - £273,600

Bowling is the Western entrance to the Forth and Clyde Canal. Completed in 1790 and stretching 38.75 miles, it is the oldest and longest canal in Scotland. The Custom House is one of the most distinctive surviving buildings on the canal, and dates to the early 19th century. Using HES funding, the Scottish Waterways Trust will carry out repairs to the site, including mending and repainting the iron viaduct.

Side by side old and new photos of Kirkcudbright Town Hall, Dumfries and Galloway

Kirkcudbright Town Hall, Dumfries and Galloway - £36,036

The B-Listed Kirkcudbright Town Hall was built in the late 19th century from Dumfriesshire sandstone. It is an imposing civic building in the area, and the focal point of a major redevelopment by Dumfries and Galloway Council. HES funding will be used to make fabric repairs to the building, which will contribute to the wider project of re-using the building as an art gallery and community space.

Side by side old and new photos of Pollok House, Glasgow

Pollok House, Glasgow - £260,010

This A-listed Edwardian Country House is owned by Glasgow City Council and managed by the National Trust for Scotland. HES funding will be used for repair work to the roof and some of the interiors of the house, helping to ensure that the building is watertight and art collections housed there remain in good condition.

Side by side old and new photos of Cromwell Harbour, Dunbar

Cromwell Harbour, Dunbar - £47,840

Cromwell Harbour dates back to the late 16th century, when it was built as a safe haven for fishing at Dunbar. It is named for its association with Oliver Cromwell, who funded repairs to the harbour in the 17th century and used it to supply his armies before the second battle of Dunbar. One of several small vernacular harbours that sits on the east coast from Berwick to the East Neuk of Fife, the harbour flourished in the height of the herring fisheries during the 17th – 19th centuries. HES funding will be used by the Dunbar Harbour Trust to carry out repairs to the structure of the harbour, allowing its continued use as a working and leisure anchorage.

Side by side old and new photos of Priory Doo’cot, Crail

Priory Doo’cot, Crail - £38,400

Part of the Fife Coastal Trail, the A-Listed Priory Doo’cot is a 16th century beehive shaped design. It houses square nesting boxes, which are rare because many have been lost as doo’cots fell out of use. The Crail Preservation Society plan to use HES funding to help carry out repairs that will improve access to the building.

About Historic Environment Scotland (HES)

  • As of the 1st October 2015, Historic Scotland and RCAHMS came together to form a new lead public body charged with caring for, protecting and promoting the historic environment. The new body Historic Environment Scotland (HES) will lead on delivering Scotland’s first strategy for the historic environment, Our Place in Time.
  • Historic Scotland is a sub brand of HES.
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Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016

2016 is the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design (IAD). Through a series of exciting events and activity, the year will showcase Scotland's position as an "innovation nation", its outstanding built heritage, and its thriving, internationally acclaimed creative industries sector. This is a Scottish Government initiative being led by VisitScotland and supported by a variety of partners.

Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016

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For further information

Ali George
Historic Environment Scotland Media Office
Direct Line: 0131 668 8714
Mobile: 07853 018 790