Councillors clear £25k for essential repairs to Grant Lodge

ESSENTIAL REPAIRS TO a historic Elgin landmark will be undertaken at a cost of £25,000 with the leader of Moray Council saying that the authority was facing its responsibility as a ‘custodian’.

Long-term plans are being laid by the Friends of Grant Lodge group to take control of the building which once served as the main library for Elgin before being gutted by fire.

A report on Tuesday to the policy and resources committee told of the B-listed building was in urgent need of repairs that, without which, a “catastrophic failure in structural elements” would be the likely outcome.

Amongst the damage is a build-up of vegetation, leaking gutters and blocked downpipes which have in turn led to dry rot that is having an affect on the structure of the building. A recent specialist reported: “As a result of the dry rot the floor boards in the upper hall are extremely dangerous and should not be walked on under any circumstances, with other areas of the building identified as being ‘extremely unsafe’.”

In his capacity as chair of the committee, Council Leader George Alexander said that the local authority had to avoid further deterioration of the building fabric as a key to safeguarding the future of the iconic lodge, which was gifted to the then Town Council in the early 20th century.

Councillor Alexander said: “As custodians of Grant Lodge, we have an important role to play in maintaining it, with hopes that it can be brought back into use in the not-too-distant future.

Carrying out these vital and urgent repairs will mean the immediate threat to its future is spared.”
Work is expected to start shortly.