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Rest And Be Thankful visitor centre backed by Jackie Stewart

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August 20 2015

Rest And Be Thankful visitor centre backed by Jackie Stewart
Plans to build a build a visitor centre on the old Military Road at the Rest and Be Thankful have been fueled by the backing of motorsport champion Sir Jackie Stewart, who used to race a number of hill climb events on the route staged by the Royal Scottish Automobile Club.

The treacherous pass was a popular event in the race calendar in the sixties owing to its 400ft gradient and hairpin bends but gradually lost its appeal in the seventies as the road surface deteriorated.

The scheme is the brainchild of Douglas Anderson who has unveiled plans drawn up by KennedyTwaddle Architectural Design to carve out a sympathetic exhibition space within the contours of the hillside, encouraging passing tourists to stop off on route to Glen Coe.

Anderson commented: “The building will be a multi-use facility which could be used by the local community for film, business and cultural events and there will also be retail and a restaurant area.”

Designer Gary Kennedy added: “We wanted it to be sympathetic to its context but we also wanted to frame the view and accentuate the natural amphitheatre of the valley. We feel it is subtly quiet but also visually exciting.”

The Rest and Be Thankful Heritage Project - Kennedytwaddle from Kennedy Twaddle on Vimeo.

Support is currently being sought for feasibility funding to progress the scheme.
Access will be possible from an stop off point from the new road at the top of the pass
Access will be possible from an stop off point from the new road at the top of the pass
The hillside centre would play host to a garage of historic vehicles
The hillside centre would play host to a garage of historic vehicles

7 Comments

james
#1 Posted by james on 20 Aug 2015 at 12:32 PM
Never mind nature, architects also abhor a vacuum.

I fail to see the point in this proposal.

The point about the great outdoors is surely that it is the great outdoors and not some sanitised ersatz visitor/ orientation/ wildlife/ geological/ 'educational'/ centre.

Whats so wrong with just getting out your car or getting off your bike and sucking it all up?

A fair point, surely?
Fraser
#2 Posted by Fraser on 20 Aug 2015 at 13:30 PM
I agree James. I've always found that the charm from the Rest comes from the fact there is so little development. You could just stumble across it. Not overly sure what benefit this will bring.
Fraser
#3 Posted by Fraser on 20 Aug 2015 at 13:31 PM
Although in saying this, the proposal itself I find to be rather elegant.
Clive
#4 Posted by Clive on 20 Aug 2015 at 14:27 PM
Jamse, you're spot on. You can't go anywhere these days without having to have a cup of tea and a muffin, or a soggy sausage roll and flat coke. I have to agree that it is a relatively elegant proposal, but would argue that you don't need a tea-shop selling pictures of Glencoe on a pencil, or a plastic pen with the Loch Ness Monster shedding its undies when you invert it, to enjoy the view.
CADMonkey
#5 Posted by CADMonkey on 20 Aug 2015 at 18:00 PM
Well I've been up this road several times and never bothered to stop and take in the view. If this got built I think I might and I wouldn't mind a cup of fresh tea at the same time. I like it. It might look a bit like a glass dam when viewed from below. Planners may not like the light pollution problem. It will be visible for miles at night.
I think it is interesting that, "Support is currently being sought for feasibility funding to progress the scheme." Presumably the architect has done his bit for free but they can't find a QS prepared to speculate on doing some costings?
SandyC
#6 Posted by SandyC on 21 Aug 2015 at 10:12 AM
Will never happen until Transport Scotland find a permanent fix for the landslides knocking out the only road to Cowal/Kintyre...politically unsustainable to have locals cut off and having to do a 90 mile detour while a £20m visitor centre sits gleaming on the hill!
M is for Mungo
#7 Posted by M is for Mungo on 21 Aug 2015 at 13:17 PM
It seems a bit 'building for building's sake'. I would like to understand the point of the steps to the road, i dont know what is down there but it must be interesting for all those folk.

Here's a better idea - use the money to stop the landslides and open the road up as a proper rally course for 2 weeks a year. Then build a visitor centre when you have the crowds to sustain it.

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