Cally Temple receives Heritage Lottery Funding

The Cally Temple project has won Heritage Lottery Fund support to conserve the historic eighteenth century Temple within Cally Woods at Gatehouse of Fleet and provide an education and information programme.


The Gatehouse Development Initiative has received £57,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for this exciting project, the Cally Temple conservation and historic environment awareness raising project at Gatehouse of Fleet. This project will allow the Gatehouse Development Initiative (GDI) in partnership with Forestry Commission Scotland to repair and consolidate the B-listed Neo-gothic Cally Temple, which is set within the Designed Landscape of Cally.  The conservation project will be accompanied by an educational and information programme to increase awareness and understanding of the Temple and the Designed Landscape of Cally
The Gatehouse Development Initiative will be seeking tenders from contractors to conserve the stone work of this important feature of the Designed Landscape of Cally, so that it will stand for years to come.  Volunteers will be carrying out research to produce interpretative panels and web site pages and will be trained to lead guided walks, becoming ambassadors for the Cally Woods.  There will also be six ‘Cally Voices’ creative writing workshops and four seasonal films, ensuring  that visitors to Cally will have a much better understanding of this important local heritage.
When it was first built in the 1780s the Temple was the home of William Todd, who looked after the Cattle which were driven each year to the growing towns of England.  When surveying the site Gatehouse volunteers found an Irish half penny of 1785 suggesting that the Temple may have been built by Irish labourers brought over from the owner’s property in Donegal.  The volunteers will be building on this research to help enhance the Cally woods for visitors and local alike.
Commenting on the award, David Steel said: “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and we are confident the project will be of benefit to the local community and increase pride in our rich local heritage.
Andrew Jarrott, Environment & Heritage Officer for Forestry Commission Scotland, Galloway said “It is marvellous that the time and effort invested by the local community has resulted in this award of a HLF grant.  This will help consolidate this important building allowing it to be enjoyed by all for many years to come.”
This project will rejuvenate a much-loved building, bringing it back to the heart of the community for everyone to use and enjoy. It demonstrates how a heritage building, while providing an important link to a community’s roots, can also be adapted for the needs today’’
Colin McLean, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, said: “This is a very exciting project driven by the local residents of Gatehouse of Fleet through the Gatehouse Development Initiative.  It demonstrates how our heritage can be a living part of a community bringing people together to learn from and enjoy their shared identity. We are delighted to be giving this very worthwhile venture our full support.”

Members of the project team meeting at the Temple: Liz Niven, writer; Michael Leybourne and Andrew Wrigtht, architects; Anna Johnson, National Scenic Area officer; Archie McNeillie, Forestry Commission Scotland; and Ron Forster, Gatehouse Development Initiative.