Scotland’s centre of excellence for archaeology in £3.2m win

The expanded Kilmartin Museum in Argyll will bring the prehistoric treasures of Kilmartin Glen (pictured) to a wider audience. PIC: Creative Commons/Flickr/Christian Hacker.
The expanded Kilmartin Museum in Argyll will bring the prehistoric treasures of Kilmartin Glen (pictured) to a wider audience. PIC: Creative Commons/Flickr/Christian Hacker.
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Scotland’s centre for excellence for archaeology is set to be created in the heart of a stunning prehistoric landscape after £3.2m was awarded to the project.

Kilmartin Museum in Argyll will be transformed into a “landmark venue” following the award from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

READ MORE: In Pictures: The mysterious rock art of Kilmartin Glen

The museum sits close to Kilmartin Glen, an area rich in Neolithic rock art with large stones decorated in cup , spiral and ring marks which are believed to be around 5,000 years old. Cairns and standing stones also pepper the countryside.

Construction work is due to begin on the cultural and natural tourism centre in January with the attraction due to open by the summer of 2020.

READ MORE: The last township to survive the Highland Clearances

Dr Sharon Webb of Kilmartin Museum said: “The project will enable us to properly care for the artefacts in our collections, and tell their stories interwoven with the sites and monuments in which they were found, as well as provide massive improvements to the visitor experience and the Museum’s education service.”

Visitors are expected increase to 44,000 that year, whilst the redeveloped museum will have an economic impact on Argyll as a whole of £5.8 million in its first year.

The museum is also set to become a major seat of learning for archaeology students of all ages.