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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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WATSON WELCOMES MINISTERIAL VISIT TO ROSEHEARTY

Monday, 12 October 2009

Local SNP councillor Bob Watson has welcomed the confirmation that the Minister for Culture Michael Russell MSP is to visit Peathill Kirk, Rosehearty, next week as a guest of the Pitsligo Castle Trust.

Mr Russell will perform the official unveiling of the new display panels detailing the aims of the Trust to consolidate Pitsligo Castle and to create the Peathill Jacobite and Heraldic Centre at a ceremony on Friday 23 October.

Councillor Watson has been a strong supporter of the work of the Trust and since becoming a member of the Pitsligo Castle/Peathill Kirk working group has secured support from Director of Education for Aberdeenshire Bruce Robertson for the project. As a result, Aberdeenshire Council Education Department is now a partner in the initiative, and local schools, e.g., Fraserburgh Academy, Turriff Academy, Rosehearty Primary etc., are coming on board as part of their local history 'curriculum for excellence' agenda. An Education Department working sub-group has also been formed to report back to Pitsligo Castle/Peathill Kirk working group in December, with their views on how they see the project develop and integrate with the education curriculum.

Commenting, Councillor Bob Watson said:

"In line with the Scottish Government's desire that bodies such as the National Trust and Historic Scotland should, as far as possible, indulge in 'joined up working', the National Trust for Scotland has also 'come on board' as an advisory non finance contributory partner.

"Seeing the potential of the Pitsligo Castle/Peathill Kirk project for the economic development of the Rosehearty area, I encouraged Pitsligo Castle/Peathill Kirk Trust to apply for funding from the Banff & Buchan Area Committee to go towards marketing the project. With my recommendation and support in committee, the project received £4750. That money has been used to pay for the production of display banners which will be used at events throughout Aberdeenshire and beyond to promote the project, an information leaflet, and the construction of a web site: www.pitsligo-castle.org.uk

"I am therefore absolutely delighted that the Minister for Culture Michael Russell will be visiting the Trust to see for himself this exciting project."

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford added:

"I was pleased to be able to visit Peathill Kirk at their recent Doors Open Day and see the excellent progress they are making for myself.

"The 'Friends' have done an exceptional amount of work in recent years to move this project forward and I know that Bob has been working hard as their local councillor to support them in their aims. I'm very pleased that Michael Russell is taking time out from his schedule to give his endorsement to the project and it is a great reflection on the 'Friends' and their efforts to date."

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