Funding has been approved for repairs to the historic Thomson Tower within Neils Garden, Duddingston

The Thomson Tower lies within the garden. It was built in 1825 by William Playfair, Architect, to
house the Duddingston Curling Society. At present the lower chamber is a museum to curling, while
the upper chamber has become a successful venue for art exhibitions. Despite regular maintenance
of this historic building it has now become necessary to carry out a number of very expensive repairs
to the building to continue to protect its structural integrity.

Thanks to a £14,500 grant from FCC Communities Foundation, the work can now be carried out.

The money, will be used to carry out repairs to the exterior harling and the protection thereafter to
exterior and interior walls of the building by a specialist restoration firm.

Barbara Anderson, Chair of the Garden Trust believes that without these repairs the Tower would
eventually fall into disrepair and have to close its doors to the public on Health and Safety grounds.
She said, “The Tower is in a unique, but tricky location. Although the setting is wonderful and the
outlook very beautiful over the loch, its proximity to the Loch does mean that it is prone to damp. The
Trust has worked hard to finance the ongoing regular maintenance of the Tower, but as a charity
would find it very difficult to fund these extensive repairs if it was not for this FCC Grant. It’s fantastic
that FCC Communities Foundation has awarded us this money and we’re really looking forward to
work getting started. The Tower is used by all sorts of local organisations and will now be able to
continue to play an important part in the life of the Garden with all its activities.

FCC Communities Foundation is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community projects
through Scottish Landfill Communities Fund.

Penny Horne, spokesperson for FCC Communities Foundation, says: “We’re delighted to be
supporting The Thomson Tower, Dr Neils Garden project and pleased our funding will help to improve
this quaint little gem of a building for the benefit of the local community. FCC Communities Foundation
is always happy to consider grant applications for projects that make a difference to local communities
and we’re really looking forward to seeing this one take shape soon.”

We expect the work to take place over the summer months and be completed by the beginning
of October 2023.

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