Princess Royal To Come to Kirkcudbright For Official Opening Of New Art Gallery

On Thursday, 12 July 2018, Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal will be given a tour of Kirkcudbright Galleries after which she will officially open the new gallery and unveil a plaque to commemorate the event.

It has been nearly 20 years in the making, but the wait is now over Kirkcudbright’s with the new gallery having opened its doors on the 9th June 2018. The work which was begun by Kirkcudbright 2000, a group of dedicated campaigners has finally come to fruition.

Councillor Elaine Murray, Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, said this week: “Kirkcudbright Galleries will be a regional gallery of national significance and has been a priority project for Dumfries and Galloway. We are excited to continue the good work started by Kirkcudbright 2000 and offer wonderful, permanent new gallery to the people of the region”.

Open all year round the Galleries will showcase the best of historic and contemporary art from galleries around the country and celebrate Kirkcudbright as The Artists’ Town.

Councillor Andy Ferguson, Chair of the Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee, said, “The Kirkcudbright Artists’ Town brand has been successfully used to promote Kirkcudbright nationally and now this stunning new Gallery will enhance the town’s reputation even further. It has been estimated that the Gallery will bring in around in 40,000 visitors per year to the town, which will in turn bring in up to one million pounds annually to the local economy. ”

Kirkcudbright’s reputation as a haven and supporter of artists stems from the town’s unique role in the history of Scottish art, beginning in the development from the 1880s of an artists’ community. Key artists such as EA Hornel, Jessie M King and Charles Oppenheimer took up residence in the town, and in turn they attracted many of the country’s leading artists to Kirkcudbright to visit and live. These artists produced an extensive body of work, some of which now resides in the Dumfries and Galloway Arts and Museum collection. This amazing body of work will now go on permanent display in Kirkcudbright Galleries.

“Kirkcudbright Galleries has been a great example of collaboration between people and institutions, both locally and nationally,” said Councillor John Martin, Deputy Chair of Communities Committee. He went on to add; “The Gallery project is part of the Kirkcudbright Charter, which was developed by the Kirkcudbright Community Trust and Dumfries and Galloway Council in 2012, and is designed to increase future use of community buildings in Kirkcudbright. Significant external funding was secured to match the council’s financial commitment and DGC would like to thank them all for their support.”

The Galleries was not only funded by national bodies such as the Heritage Lottery Fund, Creative Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland, LEADER and Museums and Galleries Scotland, but also by local supporters: The Kirkcudbright Common Good Fund, Holywood Trust and Kirkcudbright 2000.

Andrew Leitch, Capital Projects Officer, commented: “Creative Scotland is pleased to support the development of the Kirkcudbright Art Gallery. The brand new facility will create an important showcase of contemporary art and craft in Dumfries and Galloway, adding considerably to the area’s cultural offer for locals and visitors alike. The gallery will attract high profile national and international work to this artistically rich area of Scotland in a way which has not been possible until now. This new facility will also complement the Place Partnership in operation in the area helping to kickstart town centre regeneration and strengthen local communities through high quality creative engagement.”

Over the next few weeks, the Kirkcudbright Galleries Team will be posting more details on the events and world-class touring exhibitions to come, so watch this space. For more details also check out their facebook page.

Kirkcudbright Galleries is supported by Dumfries and Galloway Council, The National Lottery, Holywood Trust, Museums & Galleries Scotland, Kirkcudbright Common Good Fund, Kirkcudbright 2000 and The National Lottery through Creative Scotland’s Open Project Fund.


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