Posted Friday June 15, 2018 by Melissa Reilly

Hi everyone, my name’s Melissa Reilly and I’m delighted to have taken on the role of Development Manager with the Lanark Community Development Trust. I’ve lived in Lanark all my life and worked here for a number of years, so this is a fantastic opportunity for me to play a big part in making our town a better place to live, work, visit and enjoy. I’d like to keep everyone updated with the Trust’s activities, so I’ll be keeping a weekly Development Manager Diary to give you some insight into the work we are doing to improve our town, and hopefully inspire you to get involved!

Week one is almost over, and what can I say – it’s been a very busy and exciting first week in the role!

I’m based out at Border Biscuits for the next few weeks, so Monday was mainly getting IT set up and all the important basics, like where to get a cup of tea! On Tuesday morning I visited the Horticultural Centre at Castlebank Park. The team of volunteers have done an amazing job there in bringing the park back to its former glory, and working with the ‘Lanark in Bloom’ team to make our town look wonderful with flower planters and hangers. We also checked on the progress of the renovations on the formerly derelict sawmill building. Through funding sought out by the Trust, this building is being transformed into a multi-use community hub and at the end of the summer will be opening to provide the community with a fantastic new space for workshops, activities, classes, community hires and horticultural courses. The ‘Welcome to Lanark’ signs around town are also looking great after a fresh lick of paint and new artwork!


Tuesday afternoon then took me back to my old school, Lanark Grammar! We had a wonderful afternoon working with Higher & Nat 5 Art & Design students on a very exciting project! Later this month we will be transforming ‘Veitch’s Close’ in Lanark (beside Ladbrokes) with artwork inspired by William Wallace’s life in Lanark. The artwork will be commissioned by the fantastic Art Pistol who will be using the student’s ideas and visual concepts in the final design. Stay tuned for more photos as the project progresses and head to the close to see the completed masterpiece at the end of the month!


On Thursday I started a mini campaign on Facebook to help us get the page to 1,000 likes. We had an absolutely amazing response from the local community who helped us get over 350+ new likes in under 24 hours! We’ve now surpassed our target of 1,000 likes and can now apply for a pot of digital marketing funding, for which the 1,000 likes was a stipulation – so huge thanks to everyone who helped! You can like the page here to keep up to date with all of our activity. I’ve also set the Trust up with accounts on Twitter and Instagram.

Towards the end of the week I was working with our partners at New Lanark World Heritage Site and the Trust will now be taking part in their ‘Victorian Back in Time Day’ on Sunday 8th July. Visitors will be able to ‘step back in time’ and experience what life would have been like in the village during the Victorian era, and see important changes that would have been taking place such as the advent of photography!

On Wednesday evening I took a walk down to the Falls of Clyde Wildlife Reserve. It was great to see their new nature trail which was funded by the Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership.


There’s lots going on in Lanark this weekend. If you are stuck for dinner plans tonight ‘Chef Jef’s Fresh’ are hosting a pop up restaurant in Greyfriars Church, the ‘Making of the Great Tapestry of Scotland’ exhibition is open at New Lanark all weekend, Scottish Wildlife Trust are hosting a ‘Big Wild Weekend’ down at their Falls of Clyde Visitor Centre….and there’s a new art exhibition opening in The Tolbooth on Monday next week!

I’d really love to hear if you have any ideas on you have to improve the town, projects you would like the Development Trust to consider or if you would like to get involved in any way. Please feel free to email me with any suggestions or ideas at

Until next week!

Thanks, Melissa

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