A north-east tourist attraction has smashed the fundraising target set to ensure it survives lockdown.
The museum houses the collections of the Garioch Heritage Society, whose members have been tirelessly researching the area’s history and gathering together fascinating artefacts since 1987.
And it has been well supported by the local community in its hour of need, with an array of fundraisers helping the society hit and surpass their goal.
Colin Wood, chairman of the society, said: “We wish to thank all those who have supported us and donated towards the costs of maintaining the Garioch Heritage Centre while we have been closed to the public.
“Your generous donations have helped us smash our fundraising target of £10,000.
“Once the final cheques have been banked and Gift Aid has been reclaimed, the funds will cover our costs and help us to prepare the centre to safely reopen to the public.”
In June, Colony Park Junior Football Club took part in a 24-hour run challenge in memory of club legend and honorary president of Garioch Heritage Society, Jack Hendry, raising funds and awareness of the Garioch Heritage Centre in the process.
Then on June 28, Inverurie Events hosted a virtual Garioch Gay Gordons, with the music courtesy of Neil Mellis on the accordion and Scott Mellis on guitar.
The public were invited to join the pair from their living rooms and gardens to dance and enjoy the music, streamed live from the Garioch Heritage Centre.
It is hoped the effort may even secure those involved a Guinness World Record.
Mr Wood added: “We very much appreciate the support and all the donations we’ve received while we have had no income.
“The funds raised have seen us through this period of closure and we look forward to seeing visitors back into the centre very soon.
“Going forward, we will now be able to move away from short-term fundraising, and focus once more on the work of preserving the history of the Garioch.
“We will also be offering people the option to support us on a monthly basis, along with the chance to win big in our new Garioch Heritage 50/50 club.”
Each entry to the club will cost £5 per month and will give people the chance of winning a cash prize.
For more information on all the work of the society and centre, visit www.gariochheritage.co.uk.
The picture has not been so positive for Fraserburgh Heritage Society, which
announced at the weekend its centre will not open this season.
The new displays prepared for this year will now be carried forward for next year’s opening.
In a statement, the directors said “some of the main attractions at the centre – of which the society is very proud – are the hands on activities, along with the research library” and that the current situation “makes it necessary to exclude these meantime”.
“The health and safety of all staff, volunteers and potential visitors are of utmost importance and, having explored many options, the sad decision was reached unanimously,” they said.
“Memberships for this year will be carried into 2021 when, if the situation has improved, the centre will open on March 1 for an extended visitor season. The excellent new displays prepared by volunteers for this year will be carried forward for next year’s opening.
“We thank everyone for their support in the past, which it is hoped will continue into the future once this storm has been weathered.”
The building that houses the award-winning Fraserburgh Heritage Centre building was built around 1900 and was originally used as a store for herring barrels.
It was converted in 1998 into a modern visitor centre that aims to illustrate the history of Fraserburgh and its people and includes an array of unique exhibits.
The society that runs it is a charitable trust and it is operated by a team of dedicated local volunteers.