Work has started on a £2.1 million project to renovate the jewel in the crown of Buchan.
Aden Country Park will be given a total make-over in the five-year regeneration scheme partially funded by a £1.25 million award from the National Lottery.
Buildings will be restored and a new play area created on the site. Signage will be improved and a programme will be introduced to enhance the biodiversity of the park.
There are also plans for an interpretation centre within the revamped Coach House along with a smartphone app to provide information on the rich history of the park to all visitors.
The remainder of the money to fund the project will come from grants, cash from developer obligations and council investment.
Yesterday councillors, members of the Friends of Aden Park group, the project team and the Buchan Development Partnership met at the Mintlaw park to take part in a turf cutting ceremony.
Friends of Aden Park chairman Ian Bosberry was “absolutely ecstatic” to see the project starting.
He said: “It’s a culmination of three to four years of hard work and arguing to get to this point.
“Seeing work actually underway is great.
“Already there are more people visiting Aden than there are within Aberdeenshire so anything we can do to further increase numbers and interactions with the park the better.”
The installation of the new £300,000 play park will be the first phase of the project.
Buchan area committee chairman Norman Smith said: “It’s a great thing for the area that this project is going on.
“Aden Country Park has been growing over the years and this is the next step to bring it into the 21st Century.
“Hopefully this will encourage visitors to the park, which is the jewel in the crown of Buchan and mean the attraction has a positive future.”
Chairman of the Infrastructure Services Committee at Aberdeenshire Council Peter Argyle added: “This part is important to Buchan and to Aberdeenshire as a whole.
“The tourism aspect has a huge impact on the area and I’m delighted we’ve been able to secure this significant amount of funding which will create some tremendous improvements.”
More information on the work can be found on the Aberdeenshire Council website.