Tayside and Central Scotland

Angus hill to become Neverland children's park

Peter Pan statue in Kirriemuir; pic courtesy of Undiscovered Scotland
Image caption The park will mark the 150th anniversary of JM Barrie's birth in Kirriemuir in 1860.

An Angus beauty spot is to be transformed into the fairytale dream world of Neverland.

Angus Council has revealed that work on a playpark in the town - the birth place of Peter Pan author J M Barrie - will start within two weeks.

The park on Kirrie Hill in Kirriemuir is one of several projects planned to mark the 150th anniversary of Barrie's birth in 1860.

Other plans include new picnic areas and an outdoor classroom.

'Boost tourism'

Kirriemuir councillor, Iain Gaul, said: "It has been a long time since any work was done and I am looking forward to it starting later this month.

"Kirriemuir is a beautiful little town and the Neverland-themed play area will add to the camera obscura attraction and should boost tourism in the area, one of the key reasons for the 2010 Barrie celebrations.

"I am looking forward to the project and will enjoy seeing children and families use it to the full once it is completed."

James Matthew Barrie was born in Kirriemuir as the ninth child of weaver, David Barrie and his wife Margaret Ogilvy.

Barrie was sent to the Glasgow Academy when he was eight. He returned to Kirriemuir at the age of 10 to continue his education at the Forfar Academy.

He left his birth place for good three years later to live with his brother Alexander in Dumfries. After his studies in Edinburgh and a job as a journalist for the Nothingham Journal, Barrie moved to London in 1885.

The author was given the freedom of Kirriemuir in 1930.

He later presented the town with the cricket pavilion and camera obscura on Kirrie Hill.

Barrie died in London on 9 June 1937, but was buried at Kirriemuir cemetery.

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