A north-east beauty spot could be in line for a range of improvements worth nearly £3million.
A five year development plan has been put together for the widely popular Aden Country Park, on the edge of Mintlaw.
Next week, councillors will be asked to set the ball rolling on the ambitious £2.6million restoration project with an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The scheme will involve a major make-over for the park, which has won the Green Flag environmental award for four years in a row.
Aberdeenshire Council bosses want to carry out restoration work to historic buildings, including the ruins of old Aden House. A renovation of the park museum is also planned, as well as new, relocated cafe facilities.
An old forester’s cottage could be revived and may be used to generate income for the park.
The proposals include regeneration for the children’s play area, while historic features including the old coach house and Victorian-era arboretum would also be improved.
There are also plans to put a recently discovered Bronze Age site on the visitor trail.
Last night, Aden development worker Neil Shirran stressed that the project was in very early stages and hinged on a successful application to the lottery fund.
“At this stage its something that might happen or it might not,” he said. “We’ll have our fingers cross though.”
The project will be rolled out in two stages: a development phase – which will see a project coordinator appointed to progress the plan – followed by the delivery phase.
In a report which will be brought before Buchan councillors on Tuesday, the local authority’s communities service director Ritchie Johnston said the first part of the plan will cost just under £200,000 with the actual improvements totalling around £2.4million.
The council and its partners would have to raise around £740,000 of the full amount, while the remainder would hopefully come from lottery funding.
Mr Johnston said: “The number of visitors to the park has increased considerably, due to the increase in marketing and promotion and the increased number of events held in the park.”
He named the recent Wild About Aden family fun days and the Adeneen Halloween festival as among the most popular, drawing thousands of visitors to the site.