Ambitious vision for Lanark’s historic centre

Architect's plan for Delves Park
Architect's plan for Delves Park

A funicular rail link between New Lanark and Lanark, an amphitheatre in Delves Park, a one-way system around the Castlegate, Market End and Broomgate, and the car park in the Castlegate transformed into a public square .

These are the main elements of a new Vision for Lanark unveiled in the Tolbooth on Friday and Saturday by Lanark Community Development Trust.

Ambitious plans drawn up by architect and urban design specialist Jamie MacFarlane show the Castlegate car park replaced by a town square, ideal for markets, and new parking places created in Delves Park, along with new play facilities.

But the Delves Park 
plans are much grander than that!

The natural slope of the park would be landscaped to produce an amphitheatre where people could watch live entertainment in a new bandstand.

And behind the bandstand is the terminus for the funicular rail to New Lanark. I think there is a great resource in Delves Park,” said Jamie.

“It is a temendous space in the centre of Lanark.

“Between Wellgate and Castlegate, it forms a central portion of the town.”

Delves would be the green “lungs” of the town if there were not already fields beyond it!

And with the terminus for the funicular railway in the park, Lanark would benefit from the visitors to New Lanark.

The Wellgate is also on the list for improvements, as is the square outside the Tolbooth.

One note of caution - the money is not exactly available for this year.

“There are many different projects I have identified, and the Community Trust might want to take forward,” said Jamie.

“It is just a series of ideas. You have to have big ideas to generate a response.”

The exhibition – with live music in the street outside and tea upstairs - attracted a lot of visitors.

“I find the plans very exciting,” said Sylvia Russell, who chairs the Trust.

Butd she sounded a note of caution, adding that the plans would cost “megabucks”, although some parts could be done easier than others.

“At the moment they are a vision for Lanark and we need the support of the general public if we are to take this any further,” she said.