A drive to raise £500,000 in six weeks to help seal the deal on a new multimillion pound cultural centre for Oban began at the weekend.
The Rockfield Centre launched its community shares initiative with a party on Saturday. And already £25,000 of investment has been pledged.
The former Rockfield Primary School building lay empty for seven years before it was bought by the community. The new centre will cater for arts and culture; education and enterprise; history and heritage and community wellbeing.
Community activities with these themes in mind have already begun in the playground huts. To date more than 24,000 people have attended events there.
The varied programme of events will be expanded to the main building when it opens.
Oban Communities Trust has raised in the region of £2million already and is waiting on another £900,000 in current applications. It wants to raise the last £500,000 from community shares to reach the target and start work refurbishing the main building in December.
MP for Argyll and Bute, Brendan O’Hara, attended the event and supported the launch.
Gordon McNab, chairman of Oban Communities Trust, said: “Community shares are a form of social investment all about supporting the social purpose of a community project.
“They cannot be transferred or sold but can be withdrawn in the future and should earn interest for investors.
“By inviting the community to invest we are continuing the huge and direct involvement that has been such an important part of the whole project.”