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Lotto cash will help tell the story of historic Northern Meeting Park in Inverness, and the community is urged to get involved

By Neil MacPhail

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The Northern Meeting Park's splendid grandstand.
The Northern Meeting Park's splendid grandstand.

The historic story of Inverness’s unique city centre green space the Northern Meeting Park will be told thanks to generous funding to pay for new interpretation measures.

High Life Highland, on behalf of Highland Council, is delighted at securing £120,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund allowing the development of new on-site and online interpretation to enhance its historical narrative.

The park, built in 1864, is a popular location for sports and cultural events, and is one of the largest green spaces in the central area of Inverness.

A separate project to refurbish the park’s grandstand and build a new community pavilion is already underway with assistance from the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund.

This new Lottery funding enables a two-stage project to begin. The first stage involves collaborating with the Highland Archive Centre and Inverness Museum and Art Gallery to host events, guided tours, and talks aimed at engaging the local community with the park’s history and encouraging them to share stories and memorabilia.

The second stage focuses on creating eight high-quality interpretation panels/plinths, incorporating community input and featuring tactile and sound elements, to reflect the park’s rich heritage.

Cllr Ian Brown, leader of Inverness City and Area, said, “We are immensely grateful to the National Lottery Heritage Fund for their generous £120,000 funding award. Their support is instrumental in realising our vision for an engaging interpretation project in the heart of our historic city centre park.

“This investment will bring new life into our heritage, ensuring its stories are accessible and appreciated by all.”

Caroline Clark, The National Lottery Heritage Fund Director for Scotland, said: “It is important to us that projects we fund, thanks to National Lottery players, support inclusion, access and participation in heritage. This project does that, putting community involvement at its centre.

“The community will be involved in researching and recording stories of the Northern Meeting Park and creating the new on-site interpretation sharing the story of its important and changing role as a social, cultural and sporting hub with locals and visitors.”

High Life Highland is an arm’s length external organisation wholly owned by Highland Council, and is the largest charity and third sector provider in the Highlands.

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