Lottery grant will save 19th-century masterpiece

Glasgow building to get pounds 400,000 for restoration, writes Marianne Macdonald
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The Independent Online
One of Glasgow's finest buildings has been saved from decline by a pounds 400,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Pollokshields Burgh Hall and Lodge, considered to be a masterpiece of Scottish renaissance-style architecture,will be given a new lease of life as a result of the award, which will fund urgent repairs and extensive restoration.

The grant is part of the Heritage Lottery Fund's third round of awards, to be announced tomorrow. It is understood that 19 projects are to benefit from a total of pounds 11m.

Pollokshields Burgh Hall and Lodge was built between 1889 and 1891 from Ballochmyle red freestone. It features stained glass windows and stands in a parkland setting. But the Grade A listed buildings suffered from vandalism and was neglected until the Pollokshields Burgh Hall Trust bought the estate in 1986.

It now functions as a community centre for activities as diverse as chess, amateur operatics, keep-fit classes and wedding receptions.

Jack Steele, the chairman of the charitable trust which manages the hall, welcomed the grant. "The realisation of our pounds 900,000 restoration and redevelopment project will be of great benefit to the Pollockshields community," he said.

The trust also hopes to redevelop the buildings to include a heritage museum, children's nursery and cafe.

The lottery money will secure other promises of funding, which include a pounds 50,000 Heritage Conservation Grant from the city council and a further pounds 300,000 from Historic Scotland.

Lord Rothschild, who chairs the National Heritage Memorial Fund which manages the Heritage Lottery Fund, said: "Pollockshields Burgh Hall and Lodge has provided a focus for community life in this part of Glasgow for many years and we see them as being an integral part of many people's lives."