MSP Joan McAlpine has re-affirmed her support for Gracefield Arts Centre in a survey aimed at determining future arts provision in Dumfries.
The SNP member completed the survey after a guided tour of the facility last week.
In the survey the MSP said she would particularly like to see better promotion of the facility, classes and exhibitions, more emphasis on Gracefield as a tourist offering and better display of the permanent collection of Scottish Art.
Commenting Ms McAlpine said:
“I have visted Gracefield regularly in my capacity as an MSP and also in a personal capacity.
“I believe Gracefield provides a combination of leading contemporary exhibition space, an extraordinary permanent collection, artists studios and public engagement.
“I was really impressed by the quality of the collection, and understand there is a need for additional storage space to allow Gracefield to develop and expand its offering.
“I cannot think of anywhere else in Scotland where all these are delivered so effectively from one site.
“I would be deeply disappointed to see this facility closed and relocated unless it were to a purpose-built facility which enhanced the current offering – but that is not being proposed.
“While the current site has challenges, I would not like to see it shut - closure of the arts centre could risks Dumfries having another magnificent 19 century building lying empty.
“I would favour council architects looking again at the site and finding a way of linking the two Gracefield buildings and enhancing the offering already there.”
Picture shows Joan with Arts Officer Dawn Henderby