Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Heritage group in Moray set sights on opening exhibition in landmark that had faced uncertain future

The Cullen, Deskford and Portknockie Heritage Group wants to open a permanent heritage centre in the former Cullen Town Hall. Pictured: Jim Mackay, Alan Maloney, Brenda Wood, Pete Mason, Pat Bardhill. Picture by Jason Hedges
The Cullen, Deskford and Portknockie Heritage Group wants to open a permanent heritage centre in the former Cullen Town Hall. Pictured: Jim Mackay, Alan Maloney, Brenda Wood, Pete Mason, Pat Bardhill. Picture by Jason Hedges

History experts on the Moray coast are making preparations to open a permanent exhibition in a landmark that had faced an uncertain future.

Fears were raised that Cullen Town Hall could be lost to the community forever after the council announced it was shutting it last year.

However, the B-listed building, parts of which date from the 1820s, was saved from being boarded up after it was bought by Milne Property Developments.

The firm has already begun work renovating the chamber room of the former Cullen Town Council in the upper floor as part of an extension to the neighbouring Seafield Arms hotel.

Cullen Town Hall.

Now history aficionados are preparing to get to work to create a heritage exhibition dedicated to the local area in the Memorial Hall on the ground floor.

It is hoped the attraction will open later this year, which will be the 65th anniversary of the hall reopening following a 13-year closure after it was badly damaged by a projection box fire in 1942.

Archives of documents and photographs of past times dating from the late 19th Century are poised to go on display once renovation work has been completed in the building to shine a light on life in the area from decades ago.

Jim Mackay, vice-president of the Cullen, Deskford and Portknockie Heritage Group, said: “We have been looking for our own premises for quite some time, certainly the last couple of years.

“We have an annual exhibition every year in July and it’s very popular – we have visitors literally coming from all over the world from places like the Falkland Islands, Alaska and China.

“Part of Charlie Milne’s purchase of the hall was that a community group could use the ground floor, which we were delighted to take up.”

Alterations expected to be done by the heritage group include creating a dedicated space to store artefacts in controlled conditions so they are protected from the effects of changing temperature and humidity.

The second phase of the project will then involve putting together a display to fascinate locals and tourists.

Mr Mackay added: “The coastline here has such a varied history. There are castles, iron age ruins in Portknockie and the Deskford carnyx, which is held by the national museum.

“We have monthly talks which are very popular. There are usually more than 60 people, which is great for the size of community we are.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]