NHS Grampian has unveiled £200,000 plans designed to give a Moray medical centre a clean bill of health.
The board has approached Moray Council for permission to modernise its centre in Cullen by bringing it up to “current clinical standards”.
Last night, locals expressed excitement about the prospect of not having to travel lengthy distances for certain treatments.
The “much improved facility” is expected to safeguard local services in the coastal village for years to come.
An NHS Grampian spokeswoman detailed the extent of the costly programme.
She said: “The proposed refurbishment works will include a complete renovation of the interior to bring the building fabric up to current clinical standards, a modern disabled toilet and a new staff room.
“There is also an allowance to fit replacement windows and upgrade the heating system and we estimate the work will cost around £200,000.”
The expansion project is anticipated to last around six months, during which time local services will be delivered via the Seafield Medical Centre in Buckie.
The NHS Grampian spokeswoman added: “We appreciate this will cause some disruption, but the end result will be a much improved facility for patients in and around Cullen.”
Carol Wood, secretary of the Cullen and Deskford Community Council, said the group had unanimously decided to back the expansion project.
Ms Wood added: “We have an older community here, as well as lots of families with young children and this would make a big difference for them.
“To be able to undergo certain procedures in Cullen, without having to travel to Aberdeen or Elgin, would make life so much easier for those groups.”
Ms Wood also praised medical staff at the Reidhaven Street practice for their “excellent” work in caring for villagers.
She added: “We are fortunate in Cullen to have the medical team that we do, and it will be fantastic for them to be able to work in a more modern building.
“The entire village seems to be behind this project.”
Aberdeen-based architectural firm Mackie Ramsay Taylor has been recruited to work on the near 2,000sq ft site.
The proposal currently rests with Moray Council’s planning department, and is subject to approval from a number of authorities before it can proceed.