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New future for former school building

Today, Sunday 3rd June 2012, Cumbernauld House Trust are delighted to announce they will be working to bring a much-needed, sustainable community facility to Cumbernauld.

Working in conjunction with Cumbernauld Village Action for the Community (CVAC), the Trust are developing plans to convert the former Cumbernauld Village Primary School building into a multi-purpose community and heritage hub, ten years after the school bell rang for the final time.

(L to R) Robert McAllen, Adam Smith, and, Chair of CVAC, Philip Morgan-Klein, at the School on Thursday 31st May 2012

Initial plans are for the facility to house multi-purpose event space, a shared service centre for local groups and charities, and a heritage centre to celebrate the history of both old Cumbernauld and the new town.

The group also hopes to use the building as a visitors centre, providing a positive introduction to Cumbernauld, capitalising on the nearby, and now completed, M80. There are also early plans to create a pedestrian heritage trail from the former school, through the Lang Riggs, into the Glen, and up to Cumbernauld House Park, while operating as a central community hub to bring together the old and new areas of Cumbernauld Village, with ongoing development adjacent to Guy’s Meadow.

Adam Smith, spokesman for Cumbernauld House Trust, said “Our proposals are not set in stone and the people of Cumbernauld will be able to have their say on what services they want to be provided by the new facility. We will be having a consultation event on Thursday 14th June at 7pm in the Village Community Centre and we would encourage as many people as possible to come along and let us know how they want the former school building to be developed.”

The Trust has recently been successful in obtaining almost £15,000 of funding, with £10,000 granted by the Big Lottery Fund and £4,100 by Historic Scotland. This funding is being spent on two feasibility studies which will give the group the best possible opportunity of obtaining further grant funding and which will ensure the final uses of the building will be sustainable.

The feasibility studies are being completed by Jura Consultants and Malcolm Fraser Architects, both of which bring a wealth of experience and professionalism to the project, with Malcolm Fraser Architects having won numerous awards in recent years for their work on similar developments.

While the property remains under the ownership of North Lanarkshire Council, The Trust has secured the building with a written agreement to release it to them following completion of the development, with North Lanarkshire Council keen to see the building put to a positive use.

Robert McAllen, Chair of Cumbernauld House Trust, said “Once finished, this facility will be a real asset to Cumbernauld and, while it will take a lot of hard work and effort to complete, we’re confident we can pull it off with the help of the local community”.

Philip Morgan-Klein, Chair of Cumbernauld Village Action for the Community, said “It’s been hard for people in the Village to see the school deteriorate over the last 10 years, but CVAC and Cumbernauld House Trust have put together a plan which we hope will turn this building around. We are hopeful that we can turn this building from an eyesore into something that Cumbernauld Village, and Cumbernauld as a whole, can be proud of”.

Anyone who wishes to donate to the redevelopment of the former school can do so by clicking the “Donate!” button on the right. Please also like our new Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CumbernauldPrimarySchool.

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