Rescue package for Murray Chapel, Lanark

THE final bill for saving a Lanark landmark which hundreds of local families have a strong emotional tie with will be £225,000.

This was revealed at a special meeting held this week to discuss the future of the Murray Chapel at Lanark Cemetery.

Generations of families have bade their final farewells to loved ones in the chapel before burial but it has lain vacant for four years.

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South Lanarkshire Council, the building's owner, was criticised for what appeared to be inaction to repair the 1912 building, originally closed due to a leaking roof.

However, this week's meeting on the building's future revealed that the SLC has been working behind the scenes to put together a funding package to repair the building and put it back into public use.

Seven months ago, council official Mel Millar was set a specific 'fund-hunting' mission for the building.

And he told Monday night's special meeting on the issue — called by the Royal Burgh of Lanark Community Council — that he had managed, so far, to collect over one third of the 225,000 the chapel's refurbishment will cost.

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He said that the bulk of this had come from a Historic Scotland grant, the payment of which was dependent on other sources being found to pay the full costs.

"Now, ideally, what we need is some kind of local, charitable body to head up bids for further grants,'' he said.

For more information on this story, pick up a copy of this week's Lanark Gazette which is in the shops now.