Renfrewshire Council ‘utterly committed’ to Paisley Museum revamp despite funding setback

Mark MacMillan
Mark MacMillan

Plans to turn Paisley Museum into an international attraction are to go ahead despite losing out on a £15 million bid for lottery funding.

Renfrewshire Council has committed £15 million towards the projected £56.7m cost of the redevelopment which is the flagship project in a culture led regeneration scheme aimed at transforming the town over the next decade.

An application for a further £15m of Lottery money has been turned down but council leader Mark Macmillan says the scheme will still go ahead.

Council leader Mark Macmillan said: “We had hoped to be announcing positive news regarding the main museum.

“While we are disappointed not to be successful in this funding round, we remain utterly committed to delivering this project in full and as planned.

“This is a long-term project and there is plenty time yet to realise our ambitions – often applications of this kind are not funded at the first attempt but are successful when reapplying.

“The council is making a massive financial commitment to the project, and there remains many other routes through which external funding will be available.

“What is heartening was the positive feedback given by HLF, who stressed this was an extremely competitive round of funding.

“That backs up what we already knew – that this is a great project, which will put Paisley on the map as a tourist destination, showcase our internationally-significant collections, and reconnect the town to the world-famous Pattern bearing its name.”

He added: “Our regeneration plans already have great momentum, with Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 gathering pace, and a publicly-accessible museum store and relocated lending library set for the High Street, and that work will continue.

“Our next steps are to continue speaking to various funding partners and to resubmit our application to HLF in a later round of funding.”

Councillors will this week be asked to approve a £1.9m contract to Hillington-based Project Management and Construction to fit out the museum store on High Street due to open to the public next year.

The company has agreed to deliver a number of jobs, work placements and other community benefits to local people.

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