Fears have been voiced that one of Lanark’s most internationally-renowned historic buildlings might be destroyed by a new roadbuilding project.
Now calls are being made for action to ensure the Scottish Power works don’t lead to the final destruction of the already crumbling Bonnington Pavilion, overlooking one of Scotland’s greatest beauty spots, the Clyde’s Corra Linn falls.
Specifically built in 1709 by the landowning Carmichael family to allow visitors a view of the magnificent vista, it is reputed to be the oldest surviving Scottish structure of its type.
The area’s conservation pressure group Save Our Landscapes has taken time out from its long-running battle to prevent Cemex extending its Hyndford Quarry into the nearby Bonnington parkland to challenge Scottish Power’s scheme to conStruct a new road to its hydro electric power station’s surge tank adjacent to the historic old buildling.
The chair of Save Our Landscapes, Professor Mark Stephens, said that Scottish Power had submitted its plan to South Lanarkshire Council earlier this month and the council is listening to comments and objections until April 27.
He went on: “We have been concerned about the neglect of the Pavilion for some time and have reported this to the government’s Historic Environment Scotland agency, which describes it as being of ‘outstanding national importrance’. There are two trees growing from the building and these are clearly damaging its structure and there is recent evidence of more masonary falls.”
He said he was alarmed when he could not find any consultation with independent heritage bodies by Scottish Power before submitting its plans.
He added that various plans to restore the Pavilion had come and gone over the years without any action being taken.
A Scottish Power spokeswoman said: “Our proposal is to install a small single track road leading to a surge tank which supports the operation of the Lanark Hydros.
The track will allow for proper maintenance of the tank, supporting the generation of electricity for the local community with the added benefit of enhancing public access to the area. We do not believe this will impact on Bonnington Pavilion in any way.”