The Cambo Institute on the edge of the East Neuk is on its way to receiving a major transformation thanks to an award from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
The Institute has been successful in securing a preliminary £84,000 to develop restoration plans for historic buildings on Cambo Estate.
It can now move to the second stage where it will develop detailed proposals to secure a further £854,000 towards the total project cost of £2.2 million to develop and restore the historic 18th century stables and coach house, which are currently dilapidated and redundant, and the estate gardens.
These refurbished buildings will then provide improved facilities for the growing number of school and community activities, volunteers and visitors enjoying the estate and its historic landscape.
Established in 1998, the Institute now provides a host of learning and volunteering opportunities in heritage, the environment, arts, culture and horticulture.
There’s work experience and training for garden students, weekly sessions in ‘Green Gym’, forest education and regular art and environmental workshops for schools throughout the year.
The Victorian gardens, and snowdrop woods, now have a worldwide reputation and the demand for horticulture placements and volunteering has outgrown the existing facilities.
The buildings, dating from 1756 and unused since before the Second World War, will be given a new lease of life to provide a hub for Cambo Institute and it’s ever increasing training and educational activities.
Sir Peter Erskine, chairman of Cambo Institute, said: “It is wonderful to be able to look forward to a sustainable and sympathetic conversion of these important historic buildings – a fantastic opportunity to combine preserving glorious buildings for the future with the provision of a multitude of opportunities for future generations.”
Colin McLean, head of HLF in Scotland, added: “We are passionate about getting as many people as possible involved in their local history and heritage.
“This exciting project encapsulates that aim as the restoration of the historic 18th century outbuildings will create a focal point for visitors and volunteers to learn more about this beautiful estate. It will also create opportunities for people to train in a whole range of traditional horticultural and other heritage skills that are both fun and educational.
“There is still work to be done on the proposals but we will be offering full support in taking the application further”