A GROUP hoping to save the historic Grant Lodge has issued a rallying call to the public, after Moray Council withdrew its financial support for an extensive renovation.
Plans for a £4.2 million revamp of the derelict building, which included a £1.3 million contribution from the local authority, looked to have secured the future of the property in Elgin’s Cooper Park.
However, councillors have voted against spending the money, again leaving the future of Grant Lodge in limbo.
The surprise U-turn shocked Sarah Nicholson, a member of the Friends of Grant Lodge group, who admitted to being both angered and puzzled by the decision.
“We are extremely disappointed and quite angry really, because we were led to believe the building had a future at last," she said.
Mrs Nicholson said the Friends group will host a meeting on Tuesday, March 19, to decide what to do now.
“To say we are disappointed is slightly understating it. It’s very galling and so frustrating.
“Now the ball has come back into our court. I just hope there’s enough people of like minds that we can get something going."
Grant Lodge, built in the late 18th century, was bought by Sir George Cooper in the late 19th century and was presented to Elgin for use as a library in 1903. It was used as the town’s library until November, 1996, and between then and July, 2003, it served as the local heritage centre.
Grant Lodge was gutted by fire in 2003, and has since lain empty.