Plans for 'floating' Iron Age village on Loch Tay move forward

Plans for a £6 million ‘floating’ Iron Age village and museum in a Perthshire loch have come a step closer after state-owned land was handed over to the charity behind the project.

The scheme will see a major redevelopment of the Scottish Crannog Centre, a ‘living museum’ set in a reconstructed roundhouse on the shores of Loch Tay.

The ambitious new project will see multiple crannogs and an Iron Age village built at the beauty spot in Kenmore, where archaeological remains of the prehistoric dwellings have previously been uncovered.

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The state-of-the-art new tourist attraction is predicted to achieve “national significance”.

The Scottish Crannog Centre is based in a reconstructed roundhouse on the north shore of Loch Tay in Perthshire

Now the proposal has taken a major step forward with a successful application to Scotland’s Community Asset Transfer Scheme (CATS) that will see a 12-acre area opposite the existing building given over to the centre’s governing trust.

Scottish Crannog Centre managing director Mike Benson, said: “Finding a site in the same vicinity was crucial to our plans, setting ourselves upon a path to being a sustainable, special place that is respected, loved and admired - a national treasure with social justice at its heart that, more than anything, matters to the public we are here to serve.”

Judith Webb, chair of the evaluation panel for CATS, administered by Forestry and Land Scotland, said: “We had no hesitation in recommending the transfer of the site.

“This was an unusual, fascinating and robust application for what is clearly an outstanding scheme and exciting project.

The proposed £6m redevelopment will see multiple crannogs built at the site in Kenmore, where archaeologists have previously unearthed remains of such ancient dwellings

“It has every prospect of becoming an international centre of excellence and a five-star attraction that would deliver significant local economic benefits and be of national significance.

“This is great for the centre, great for the local area and great for Scotland.”

The site, known as Dalerb, currently hosts a picnic area and car park that are regularly used by the local community - facilities the trust has pledged to maintain.

The project is predicted to deliver a range of social benefits including 55 full-time jobs, a targeted apprenticeship scheme and volunteering opportunities.

The hand-over of four hectares of state-owned land will allow the popular tourist attraction to expand and achieve "national significance"

Research and education schemes will also be developed, as well as increased engagement with local community schools, businesses, artists and traditional craft workers.

It is anticipated that creation of the new centre could contribute £2.1 million to the Scottish economy, with just over a quarter of that invested locally.

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