Wed 1 Mar 17
The countdown is on for the opening of Fife's impressive new cultural venue, Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries, set in the heart of the Heritage Quarter.
Thursday 18th May 2017 is the day that the new venue will open its doors to the public. With the countdown officially on and only 11 weeks to go... or 79 more sleeps...it's a case of all hands on deck.
The opening weekend coincides with the national Festival of Museums, which runs from 19- 21 May.
Construction work on Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries (DCL&G) finished late last year. Fife Cultural Trust staff, who will manage and operate the facility on behalf of Fife Council, are now hard at work moving thousands of books, museum objects, precious archives and artworks into the building.
The new museum joins two B-listed buildings, the existing Carnegie library and a former bank branch, and has created a purpose-built modern extension overlooking the grounds of Dunfermline Abbey. It will be home to a museum over two floors, three temporary exhibition galleries, a café, a shop, a new children's library and the Reading Room - a local history, study and archives space.
Cllr Helen Law, Chair of the City of Dunfermline Area Committee said: "Come opening day, years of work planning, securing funding, carrying out an archaeological dig and constructing this breathtaking new facility in a tight spot in the heart of the town's Heritage Quarter will have paid off.
"I'm extremely pleased that the wait is almost over for residents of Dunfermline, Fife and further afield. Those of us who have been lucky enough to have a sneak peek inside the building have been extremely impressed – from staff to local businesses to the many volunteers who have dedicated their time and energy to this venture. Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries really will be a game changer for the town centre, aiming to contribute a visitor spend of at least £500,000 each year to the local economy."
Fife Cultural Trust Chief Executive, Heather Stuart, said "We are immensely proud of what we have all created together. This building truly is state of the art and a fitting celebration of the past, present and future of Dunfermline, one of Scotland's ancient capitals.
"A lot of hard work and detailed planning has gone into blending the new with the old, ensuring that the legacy left by Andrew Carnegie lives on. Thanks to the dedication and commitment shown by the project team, staff and over 450 volunteers, we have created a vibrant visitor attraction that will be enjoyed for many generations to come. DCL&G will be open daily from the 18 May 2017 and admission is free."
Architect Richard Murphy added: "We are absolutely thrilled that the Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries is finally complete. It's been a ten year project for us since winning the architectural competition in 2007 and that timescale has given us a wonderful opportunity to design in great detail for this highly particular brief and demanding site. Building an extension to the world's first Andrew Carnegie library is a great privilege and we hope that our own contribution from the 21st century will, in the fullness of time, take its place in Dunfermline's continuing and unfolding history alongside our many historic neighbours."
A formal opening of the new Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries is due to take place later in the year.
You can keep up to date with the latest news by liking the 'Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries' Facebook page or following @ONatDCLG on Twitter.