Saughton Park project reaches new stage

The public are invited to help come up with ideas for retaining the heritage of one of Edinburgh’s most historic parks.

Saughton Park
Saughton Park

On Wednesday an interactive session with Heritage Interpretation Consultant Rachel Hunter will allow people to contribute their ideas and thoughts on plans for Saughton Park, which is about to undergo a major restoration project. 

Participants will have the opportunity to shape the design plan for the proposed £5.3 million re-development of the park, which would see it restored to its former glory. 

The outcome of the event will help inform the project’s newly-appointed design team in their plans for the park. The team includes consultants Ironside Farrar Ltd, who were involved in the design of The Helix in Falkirk, the location for the world-famous Kelpies sculptures, alongside Sutherland Hussey Architects and Richard Shorter Architect. 

Saughton Park’s future will also be influenced by a Visitor Satisfaction Survey, closing at the end of September, which will inform the project team on who uses the park and how they use it. 

Environment Convener, Councillor Lesley Hinds, said: “It is very important that we involve the community in shaping the future of Saughton Park, as the project aims to provide a high-quality facility for the people of Edinburgh. 

“This space boasts an incredible wealth of history and deserves recognition, so we are delighted to have appointed such a well-experienced design team to help create a vision for its restoration.” 

Saughton Park was originally established as part of Saughton Hall in the 17th century, before being purchased by the Council and opened to the public between 1900 and 1905, and is considered one of Edinburgh’s six ‘premier parks’.

In 1908 it was redesigned for the Scottish National Exhibition, resulting in a range of new features, including sporting facilities, a bandstand and winter and botanical gardens.

A project to restore the park now aims to renovate these historic elements, and last year secured almost £400,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund to develop a design plan and to prepare a bid for funding to implement this. 

Rachel Hunter will lead a workshop session from 6pm on Wednesday 17th September in Saughton Park Winter Garden, where participants will be invited to contribute ideas on how to interpret the heritage of the park. 

Members of the public can also have an input by carrying out the Saughton Park Visitor Satisfaction Survey, which closes on 30th September. 

Find out more about the Saughton Park project on the Council website.

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