Concerns over future of 'neglected' Fossil Grove

THE future of a ­"neglected" city tourist attraction which dates back millions of years will be at the ­centre of a debate.

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Fossil Grove isn't ­attracting the same level of visitor numbers as it used to

Glasgow residents are ­being asked to share their views about Fossil Grove in Victoria Park as part of a consultation into its redevelopment.

It came as concerns were raised over the decline of the ancient site. Locals say there has been no effort made to promote it as an attraction and that a lack of investment and facilities mean people are put off from visiting.

The 11 fossil tree stumps are the remains of an ancient forest, which existed around 350million years ago.

They were discovered in 1887 when an old quarry was being landscaped during the creation of the park, in the west of Glasgow.

The site is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

Jill Ferguson, a former member of Friends of Victoria Park, said: "There should be tourist buses going to it every day. Its crazy that they don't."

She said the lack of toilet facilities, visitor centre, cafe and signage were problems.

Partick West councillor Kenny McLean, who is on the Fossil Grove board, said: "It has been neglected in recent years and there were worries that it wasn't being properly maintained.

"I am hopeful that we can find a solution that will suit the local community and the rest of the city."

The consultation will take place on Saturday, from 11am-2pm at function room two in the National Badminton Academy at Scotstoun Leisure Centre. It is being run jointly by Glasgow City Council and the city's Building Preservation Trust.

A spokeswoman from the trust said Fossil Grove was one of the city's "oldest and probably most unique tourist attraction".

She added: "Historically, it has been difficult to control atmospheric conditions within the building to adequately protect the fossils with heat loss, temperature fluctuations and water ingress the main issues."

Following a report on Fossil Grove in 2011, the trust is updating this to find a "preferred option" for the collection.

A council spokesman said: "The consultation on the future of the fossil grove will allow people who love the park to make their views known."

rachel.loxton@eveningtimes.co.uk

Local government

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