South Scotland

Bid to curb Kirkcudbright art gallery overspend

Art gallery Image copyright Colin Hattersley
Image caption The project is heading towards an overspend of nearly £250,000

Efforts are ongoing to reduce a projected overspend on the delivery of an art gallery of "national significance" in southern Scotland.

The project in Kirkcudbright opened to the public this summer.

However, a report to councillors said that it was on course to run nearly £250,000 over its original budget of more than £3m.

Dumfries and Galloway Council officers are continuing their efforts to cut the overspend.

The new facility completed a vision for the town which first surfaced nearly 20 years ago.

It provides a permanent home for work created by the many artists who have, at one time, lived in the town.

A council report showed that visitor numbers have exceeded 20,000 since it opened its doors in June - well on course to pass an annual business plan target of 40,000.

However, a number of areas have seen project costs rise including:

  • unforeseen repairs to the existing buildings
  • additional security measures and specification upgrades
  • changes to environmental systems and related electrical works
  • changes to satisfy Scottish Fire and Rescue Service regulations
  • client changes/additions
  • time-related charges by contractor

The report said additional work was necessary to ensure the gallery reflected "the current highest standards of safety and security for the collections and exhibitions" and for customer safety.

It said work was ongoing to try to reduce costs in relation to a number of the areas.

A full report on the position is expected to be delivered to the council in November.

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