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Work begins on Edinburgh Printmakers' Castle Mill Works capital development

Published: 19 Jun 2017

L-R: Martin Sinclair Project Manager Gardiner Theobald, Suzy O Leary Page Park Architects, Iain Munro Deputy Chief Executive Creative Scotland, Alastair Snow Chair Edinburgh Printmakers, Sarah Price CEO Edinburgh Printmakers, David Fleet Project Manager Interserve. Photo: Tom Flanagan

Yesterday, Monday 19 June, Edinburgh Printmakers began work on their new home at Castle Mill Works Fountainbridge. The home of the former North British Rubber Factory is set to be transformed into a £12.3million creative hub in Fountainbridge hosting a new Centre of Excellence for Printmaking and Creative Industries Hub. A focal point for the local community, the development of Castle Mill Works will allow Edinburgh Printmakers to extend its work as a leading arts charity; bringing together artists and visitors to offer everyone a direct experience of Printmaking.

Inside Castle Mill Works visitors will be welcomed to a world-class cultural facility housing galleries, a learning studio, a state-of-the-art printmaking workshop, creative studios, a cafe and much more. Award-winning Scottish architects, Page/Park have been appointed to bring the Grade C listed Castle Mill Works into public use for the first time in its 160-year history. Complementing the architectural design and retaining links to the history of the building, a series of permanent artwork commissions will be sited throughout the building.

Over £10million has been successfully secured from funders including The National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, Scottish Government, Creative Scotland and Historic Environment Scotland as well as trusts and foundations including Garfield Weston Foundation and The Robertson Trust allowing construction to start on the building which is due to be completed in 2019. The City of Edinburgh Council have also pledged their full support by transferring the building for the project, recognising that this facility will make a positive contribution to the local and national economy.

Following a tender process Interserve has been awarded the contract to deliver Page/Park's vision for the site.

External render of Edinburgh Printmakers new home

Speaking at the breaking the ground ceremony, Edinburgh Printmakers CEO Sarah Price said: “We're delighted to be in a position to formally begin construction on Edinburgh Printmakers new Centre for Excellence. Coinciding with our 50th birthday this marks a new chapter in our journey to improve facilities for artists and makers in the City and for our ever expanding and diverse audience to enjoy printmaking at its best. I'm extremely grateful to my team at EP, our design team and the many supporters who have helped us along the way, from our major funders to the small donations, every penny raised has helped us to get us to this point. In redeveloping Castle Mill Works we are preserving an iconic piece of Edinburgh's industrial heritage and planning to look after it for generations to come. We are aiming for the main building to be open in Spring 2019 and will continue to fundraise over the coming 3 years to complete the full Creative Industries incubator project as planned. We will continue to build on the overwhelming support from the local community and donors to fully realise this transformative project.”

Iain Munro, Deputy CEO at Creative Scotland said: “This is a significant milestone for Edinburgh Printmakers, both in terms of starting the exciting new building works, and in marking the 50th anniversary of the organisation.

“The Castle Mill Works development will breathe new life into the former headquarters of the North British Rubber Company and transform it into a world-class visual arts centre and creative hub for artists and audiences alike, standing the organisation in good stead for the next 50 years.”

Interserve’s Divisional Director Martin Smith said: “We are delighted to be starting this prestigious project for Edinburgh Printmakers and to be working once again with Page\Park Architects. This new work comes just as we have successfully completed another exceptional historic building redevelopment with Page\Park in Edinburgh and affirms our position as one of the Capital’s premier restorers of iconic listed buildings. Our commitment to measured growth and sustainable development in Scotland, partnering with valued clients like Edinburgh Printmakers, is cemented in this contract.”

Lord Provost Frank Ross, said: “This is great news and I am delighted to see that work in now starting on site. We have been fully supportive in making the building available for the project as we recognise that this facility will make a positive contribution to the local and national cultural economy.

“From helping people to discover and connect with their own creativity to providing an employability service specifically for the creative industries, their plans will see this derelict listed building turn into Fountainbridge’s cultural centre.”

Lucy Casot, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, commented: “This is an exciting day for the community of Fountainbridge. The area is undergoing transformation, yet the residents remain justly proud of its heritage and identity. They have shown enormous drive and support for this building which is all that remains of the industry which once supported so many local families. With the help of National Lottery funding, its restoration into a thriving cultural centre, benefitting many hundreds of national and international artists is now underway. I look forward to seeing it develop.”

A public fundraising drive has been launched and by donating towards the campaign members of the public will have their name ‘immortalised’ in print within the new building. Supporters of the project can also can become Friends of Edinburgh Printmakers giving regular donations at a variety of levels in return for exclusive rewards and EP Circle Patrons giving large donations will have the opportunity to receive a limited edition print created specially by Edinburgh Printmakers Artist Patrons John Byrne, Callum Innes or Rachel Maclean.

ENDS

Notes to Editors

For further information, interview and image requests please contact Owen O'Leary, Oh Really Creative on 07815992658 or email owen@ohreally.co.uk

Edinburgh Printmakers is a leading visual arts organisation and registered charity established in 1967 as a specialist centre for fine art printmaking offering open access printmaking facilities, running year-round exhibitions and events and by offering learning opportunities for all.

The project has also been awarded funding by Heritage Lottery Fund, Creative Scotland, Historic Scotland, the Architectural Heritage Fund, Garfield Weston, Robertson Trust, PF Charitable Trust, Turtleton Charitable Trust, Dunard Fund, Binks Trust and other trusts and foundations as well as already attracting valuable individual and corporate donations.

Edinburgh Printmakers will continue to present a public programme of exhibitions, events and activities at its Union Street premises until summer 2018.

For more information visit: http://www.edinburghprintmakers.co.uk