Buckie Drifter could return to port with new music school plans

A once popular Buckie maritime heritage centre could be given a new life if a local musician has his way.

The Buckie Drifter was first opened in 1994 with the support of Moray Council, telling the story of fishing communities on the Moray Firth through exhibits depicting the social and maritime history of the Moray coastline.

Hosting a substantial archive there were high hopes for the building when the Princess Royal visited in 2001 – however, just four years later the centre was closed due to falling visitor numbers and rising costs.

Now James Alexander – a founder of the Fochabers Fiddlers and Speyfest – is leading a drive towards turning the building into a music school.

Mr Alexander believes there would be a demand from young people from throughout the north east who wished to hone their musical talents. Now he will attend a meeting this week where interested parties can discuss a possible way ahead for the Buckie Drifter.

He said: “It is early days yet but we are investigating the possibility of taking over control of the building from Moray Council.

“I believe there is enough interest among the public to make this work – there is such a lot of musical talent in the area, that is not an opinion it is an undeniable fact.

“However, at the moment people who want to pursue a career in music has to travel south to Edinburgh or Glasgow to study and often that is the last we see of them.

“Having a music school in Buckie would allow young people to stay in the area – and perhaps tempt a few back who have left.”

The meeting to discuss the possibility is to be held at 7pm on Wednesday in the Buckie Town Hall – anyone with an interest is invited to attend.

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