Great Place scheme

Frae the Streets Project

Inverclyde’s Great Place Scheme – Stories Frae the Streets



Greenock Town Centre charrette took place in 2016 engaging widely with local residents, businesses, schools, community planning partners and key stakeholders. It identified culture and heritage as having a major role to play in the social and physical regeneration of Greenock town centre. It cites we should, ‘Build on the pride that Greenockians [have in the] significant built heritage and intriguing social and economic history,’ ‘capitalise on the…talented creative industries’ and ‘raise ambitions and perceptions in Greenock as a place to work, live, visit and narrow inequalities.’

In 2017, Inverclyde Council’s local history services consisting of the McLean Museum, Inverclyde Archives and Watt Local History Library moved to premises on Cathcart Street in Greenock Town Centre while the existing buildings undergo a two year refurbishment. The refurbished Watt complex will re-open in 2019 and with that another opportunity to tie into the bicentenary of James Watt death, work with our heritage partners and celebrate with new audiences the heritage of Greenock. 

The Inverclyde Cultural Partnership’s vision is of a strong, sustainable heritage infrastructure operating across the public and third sectors, improving well-being and opportunities for established communities and providing an inspiring offer to visitors.

Our mission is that heritage will:

  • Make people happier by encouraging communities to come together to share experiences, improve the look and feel of the local environment and provide opportunities for creativity and self-expression.
  • Make communities stronger by building a sense of pride and ownership of the past, preserving those histories and providing new opportunities to tell those stories.
  • Make Inverclyde more vibrant by preserving and visibly celebrating its rich heritage through events, architecture, archives and collections.

Our priorities are:

  • To develop a Heritage Strategy that places the principal heritage assets - the Watt Library and McLean Museum and Art Gallery ( Watt Institution)  at the centre both thematically and geographically and articulates fluidly with third sector heritage initiatives and organisations. This strategy will include ways of growing the heritage sector in Inverclyde through capitalising on underused tangible and intangible heritage assets and identifying partners to support the work.
  • To develop new ways of engaging with new audiences, improving access and expanding the definition of what heritage means, particularly for those communities not currently engaging regularly in heritage activities. 
  • To advocate for heritage as a driver for the social and physical regeneration of Inverclyde’s many places, encouraging planning and regeneration agencies to make the most of existing heritage assets and to listen to the heritage needs of the communities affected by change. This will encourage more visitors, staunch the flow of depopulation, nurture a greater sense of well-being and encourage inward investment.


Through the Great Place Scheme, the partnership will explore ways of engaging community planning partners, communities and visitors in mutual relationships, identifying the heritage that is important to them and working with them to celebrate and preserve it.

This will involve;

  • Researching the role of heritage by creating a Heritage Strategy for Inverclyde that explores how heritage organisations can work together more effectively, how heritage fits into the social outcomes of Local Outcome Improvement Planning and how the Inverclyde Heritage Hub/ Watt Complex will relate to proposed heritage centres in the outlying settlements. This will include feasibility studies of Greenock’s underused heritage buildings.

Where we are at:  Nov 2018 Jura Consultants working with icecream architecture consultancy have been appointed to carry out the consultancy and development of the strategy; Jan/ Feb 2019 Consultancy workshops for key stakeholders

Feb/ March 2019 Public consultation

  • Pilot a new approach to engage hard-to-reach communities in their heritage by recruiting a Heritage Outreach Worker to support the new Heritage Hub’s focus on social and local history, developing heritage volunteers and an archive of stories and histories from participants who would not normally access museums.

Where we are at:  Alison Nolan Heritage Outreach Officer

Working with Scottish Book Trust with a Digital Storyteller Residency.  Digital Storyteller  Paul Bristow  Contact Paul to find out more about  the Storyboat Project

  • Supported by Developing the Young Workforce, build capacity in heritage provision and support the local economy by participating in HLF’s Skills for the Future programme, recruiting 2 local young people over 3 years.

Where we are at:   Rebekkah Smillie is our Heritage Apprentice .  She was hired through Inverclyde Councils “Recruit Programme” and is currently working toward her SCQF Level 6/ MA Level 3 Business and Administration qualification with West College of Scotland.

  • Commission 3 artists’ residencies in Greenock Town Centre, exploring how artists can work with local communities to animate areas of Greenock Town Centre, celebrate ‘lost’ culture and input into proposed public realm improvements

Where we are at:  GPS Commissioned Surge to provide Performance and learning programme around the Galoshans play October 2018.  They delivered workshops that Kings Oak PS Family Hub and Clydeside Singers / Vibe were involved with – all took part in the final spectacular performance which was provided with the professional troupe.

With the Watt Institution at the centre of these proposals, the long-term accessibility of the new archive material is assured and new partnerships and methods of engagement are sustained.

For further details on any of our projects please contact

Alison Nolan

Heritage Outreach Officer

T: 01475 712328


Page last updated: 25 June 2019