Surprise find at town hall site

Town Hall work underway
Town Hall work underway

Work is now fully underway to transform an iconic building into a centre for heritage, arts, culture and community use.

Contractors have now moved onto the Kirkintilloch Town Hall site, working towards an opening date in summer 2017.

And workers made a surprising find underneath the hall car park recently - a selection of Roman artefacts including a Roman nail and a piece of pre-glaze Roman ‘Samian ware’, both potentially dating back to around 160AD or earlier.

So far, work has taken place to excavate the car park site, and to create retaining walls and new parking.

Contractors have also stripped out soft furnishings, and redundant floors and walls within the town hall itself.

Development partners were able to visit the town hall last week and see for themselves the progress being made.

Council leader Rhondda Geekie said: “I was fascinated to hear about the Roman nail, pottery and other items discovered below the foundations of the car park. It’s a timely reminder of how much history surrounds and enriches East Dunbartonshire.

“I was also fortunate enough to be able to go inside the town hall - providing an opportunity to visualise how history and future will blend in a functional, flexible and sustainable way.

“These are exciting times for the town hall and Kirkintilloch. The exterior of the B-listed building will be retained and refreshed, but inside will be completely changed to accommodate a variety of uses.

“I can’t wait to see the new-look town hall - which was identified as a priority in the council’s Kirkintilloch Masterplan - when it opens next year.”

The overall project will cost approximately £5.5m - including £666,600 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

Lucy Casot, Head of HLF Scotland, said: “We are looking forward to seeing the restoration of this historic building.

“Residents will be able to take part in a host of community activities in a wonderful historic setting.

“Additionally, locals and visitors to the town will be able to learn more about the historic past of this part of East Dunbartonshire thanks to a new heritage discovery centre to be housed in the renovated building.”