Work to transform a historic north-east court building into a hub for community organisations has taken a step forward.
The former Stonehaven Sheriff Court, which closed in 2014, was transferred to the Stonehaven Town Partnership (STP) for £1 last year.
Since then, a team from STP has been working hard to turn the old courtrooms and offices into a place for groups to call home.
Giving the Evening Express a glimpse at the building work, STP chairman Jim Stephen today spoke of his delight at how it’s all taking shape.
The refurbishment is taking place in two stages, on the ground floor and first floor.
Jim said: “We started work on the first floor in October and it has progressed really well.
“We have a fair amount of groups who are looking to occupy the building, including the Kincardine Development Partnership, Pillar, Dragon Fly Therapy a chiropractor and ourselves. The original idea was for this to become a hub for the third sector and we had a lot of interest for people to come together.”
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The Citizens Advice Bureau will occupy the ground floor of the site and work began there this week.
Inside the building, one of the former courtrooms has been stripped out and will be used by the Baptist church in the town as a meeting room.
STP, a charitable organisation that was established to promote and encourage voluntary activity within Stonehaven, has also decided to keep the largest space as a courtroom that will be made available to groups and businesses for meetings.
Organisations due to take up residence in the building have also now started working on kitting out their rooms.
Jim added: “We’ve probably invested around £100,000 in making this a reality. The ground floor is being done through LEADER funding.
“We’ve had some great workers throughout this and I want to thank Jim Douglas and John Robson who have been the project leads for this.
“I also want to thank David Fleming, who has since retired from STP, but this was his idea originally.
“All the work has been done by local workman and we are planning on hiring janitors to help the upkeep of the building.”