A MULTI-million pound revamp of Dalkeith country park to create a new adventure playground, cafés, restaurants and shops, is set to be unveiled later this month.
HRH The Duke of Gloucester visited the new Restoration Yard shopping area to unveil a plaque at the park last week, ahead of the opening on July 25.
The project has also seen walking and cycling routes in the park upgraded, along with a new natural trail. The new adventure playground has been named Fort Douglas.
The revamp has created 40 jobs and is estimated will attract 300,000 annual visitors.
The shopping complex has been created in the former stableyard buildings.
Lord Damian Scott has led the project on behalf of the Buccleuch family along with Duncan Mackison, Chief Operations Officer at Buccleuch.
He said: “It was an honour to welcome The Duke of Gloucester to Dalkeith Country Park. The plaque unveiling marks the restoration of these beautiful eighteenth century stableyard buildings and sets the scene for an exciting new era of operations within the park.
“The stunning natural surroundings of Dalkeith Country Park are readily accessible on the edge of Edinburgh and provide a wonderful backdrop for this new offering.
“Our vision was to create a first-class destination for visitors while sensitively restoring the Category A listed buildings which are steeped in history.
“We are extremely hopeful that the combination of a gorgeous new store, café and wellbeing space within The Restoration Yard, alongside the dramatic riverside adventure park Fort Douglas, will draw visitors from far and near for many years to come.”
The revamp has come as a row continues over charges being introduced for entry to the country park.
Joggers, cyclists and walkers are being charged £1 at the gates after the Duke of Buccleuch, Richard Scott, the UK’s largest private landowner, implemented the charges following the introduction of an “annual pass” for dog walkers a number of years ago.
Councillors have accused the Duke of turning the park into a “money-making” enterprise for his family.
However, park bosses insist the plans to alter the fees were introduced after “extensive consultation with local residents, community councils and stakeholders”. The park’s main gates now also close to vehicles from 7pm through to 7am.
A £1 charge for one-off visitors is being maintained alongside an annual Friends of Dalkeith Country Park pass card for regular users starting at £10.