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May 25, 2010

New life planned for ancient monument

Broughty Castle sits imposingly at the mouth of the River Tay.  Built in 1496 on a rocky promontory, it has faced many sieges and battles. Cared for by Historic Scotland and operated by Dundee City Council, the local community trust in Broughty Ferry are frustrated that the potential of the Castle is not being fully exploited for local benefit and have come up with some ambitious plans to develop the historic site and some of the surrounding area

Graeme Bletcher

Broughty Ferry Development Trust is set to meet officials from Historic Scotland to discuss ambitious plans for a multi-purpose facility near Castle Green. The group will table proposals for the development of Broughty Castle as a tourist attraction, including a new-build centre to attract visitors — potentially housing a restaurant, cycle hire, shops and a marine research and education base.

Dundee City Council will also be represented at the meeting, on May 17, as the landlord for the site.

Trust chairman Andrew Nicoll said the project has been “moving forward” since the first public meeting was held at the Castle Green public hall earlier this year.

He added, “We have a meeting set up with Historic Scotland and Dundee City Council to discuss the use of the castle.

“We have been in touch with Historic Scotland to let them know about our plans, but this will be the first official meeting.

“A large section of the castle is unused and you can’t get into it.

“We want to see it opened up.

“The idea is to see a better use of the castle and a more joined-up approach to providing facilities there.”

The development is in the early planning stages and members of the trust are still investigating funding options, feasibility and potential sites.

Other items on the group’s agenda have also moved forward, with renovations for local tourist attraction Barometer Cottage set to be taken on by a private architect and the Fisherman’s Graveyard in line for new story boards and signage.

Mr Nicoll said, “The Fisherman’s Graveyard is a forgotten jewel in Broughty Ferry’s crown and a lot of people don’t even realise it is there.”