‘Community hub’ plan for Lanark’s Castlebank

Architect's impression of how the Castlebank Project will look
Architect's impression of how the Castlebank Project will look

Ambitious plans for the old sawmill complex at Castlebank were unveiled to the public on Thursday, at a ‘drop-in‘ consultation in Lanark Tolbooth.

The architect’s drawings show the two building currently on the site linked by a canopy, to create outdoor space, and a completely new building below them.

And together they could form a community hub for use by a number of groups.

The smaller building has already been converted into a toilet block for those working in the new horticultural centre that Lanark Community Development Trust has created on the former derelict tennis courts.

That phase went ahead with grants from Climate Change Fund and Leader Plus, after the lottery turned down a bid in 2013 for funding for the the whole project.

Now it will take around £500,000 for the renovation of the derelict larger sawmill building and the new building, and the consultation on Thursday was part of the groundwork for the Lottery bid.

The public are being asked if they would use the new buildings, and survey forms have been left in the doctors’ surgery, and in Lanark Library and the public have until this weekend still to put their views.

The survey is available on-line at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Castlebank

“We have had a very good response to the survey, and it is not too late to comment,” said Sylvia Russell who chairs the Development Trust.

The consultationis being run for the Trust by Community Enterprise, and when the results of that are collated the application will be submitted to the Lottery fund in November.

“It will be spring before we hear if we have been successful,” she added.

The plans are to have a kitchen, changing area, office and reception in the larger building, with a gallery with a few tables and chairs, and there could be displays of photos or artwork. The new building would be a classroom with three garage-style storage bays underneath.