Johnston School

Kirkcudbright Development Trust have been awarded £140,000 from The Holywood Trust to help with the redevelopment of the Johnston School.  This award follows hot on the heels of our Big Lottery Award bringing our total for the project to nearly £1,000,000.

Work continues to apply for further funding from other organisations in order that the School can be developed to its fullest potential.

Johnston School Dark Skies Visitor Centre – £59,000 grant from Galloway Glens Project

Galloway Forest Park is one of the darkest places in the UK and has been awarded a Dark Sky Park designation, one of only four in the western world. Part of the development of the Johnston School will be a Dark Sky Visitor Centre open to the public promoting the park and all things astronomical. The Trust will work in partnership with the Dark Skies organisation to create a unique, educational and diverse venue which will encompass the magic of the Dark Skies yet deliver an educational outlet.

Discussions have taken place with The Glasgow Science Centre and they are very keen to work with us to develop the Visitor Centre. The planetarium at the Glasgow Science Centre is a memorable experience and we hope to incorporate some of the outstanding material into the Kirkcudbright Dark Skies experience. It is hoped we will be able to offer practical astronomy courses for schools, the community and visitors alike. The Barhill Woods offers an idealplace to hold outdoor courses and with shelter from the lights of the town, the Dark Skies can be superb.

Work is progressing with designers and architects. Now a large part of the funding has been secured planning permissions can be sought and Listed Building applications made. The Trust has been awarded £59,000 by the Galloway Glens Project towards the development of the Dark Skies Visitor Centre. This will hopefully encourage other funders to support the project.

Big Lottery Fund Award

The Trust have been awarded £850,000 from the Big Lottery Fund towards the redevelopment of the Johnston School building.  Thanks to everyone in the town who supported the project, it really has made a difference.

It will take some time to get the appropriate planning permissions for any renovations that we undertake, so it will be a year or two yet before we reopen.  A lot of work has already been done by our architects and we will be able to make some real progress over the next few months with the help of this award.

We will require additional funds to do everything that we want at the building and plans are in place to raise these.  We can, nevertheless, celebrate the award.  This project is now going to succeed and it will deliver real benefit to people in the town.

Thanks again for your support.

Dark Skies Visitor Centre

Galloway Forest Park is one of the darkest places in the UK and has been awarded a Dark Sky Park designation, one of only four in the western world. Part of the development of the Johnston School will be a Dark Sky Visitor Centre open to the public promoting the park and all things astronomical. This project has been short-listed for support from Galloway Glens.

If you want to know more about our plans for the Johnston School don’t hesitate to get in touch with Andrew on 01671 820654 or email andrew.ward@kirkcudbrightdevelopmenttrust.org.

Johnston School project receives lottery funding

A development grant of £30k has been awarded to Kirkcudbright Development Trust to fund the architectural work required to produce a detailed costing and plan for the creation of the new centre.

The work by architects ARPL will build on the preliminary study that has already been done.

This is a significant move forward for the project.

Johnston School Decision

As many people will know the Trust is working hard to secure ownership of the Johnston School. Our plans for the school were submitted to the council in July.  We are pleased to report that Dumfries and Galloway council have now formally decided to hand the School over to Kirkcudbright Development Trust, conditional on the Trust receiving  appropriate funding from grant bodies.

We are confident that the case we have presented to them works and that the school will make a major worthwhile contribution to the lives of people in Kirkcudbright.

The Trust is working to raise finance and great progress has been made with three major funders to the extent that we will know by March 2017 whether we have the money we need to re-vamp the school, creating a superb community asset.  The school will make a major worthwhile contribution to the lives of people in Kirkcudbright.

The plan for the school is to create a facility which supports a wide range of groups. Groups already showing an interest include Summer Festivities, pre-School Play Group, Youth Drop In Centre, and Police Scotland. If your group is interested in either a casual let or permanent space in the school, please get in touch.

Youth Workers

We have received funding for youth workers in Kirkcudbright for the next three years. The funding we have covers 3 part time staff for 4 hours each per week. This project will start immediately and may yet be expanded (additional hours/activities/staff) if we secure additional funds. We will be running the project from temporary premises (yet to be identified) . It will then move into the school once it is up and running. If you can suggest premises which can be used to get the centre started, please contact us.

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