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Jim Clark museum given go ahead

A funding package has been completed for the £1.6m project to create a museum celebrating two-time Formula One champion Jim Clark in the Borders.

Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has secured nearly £635,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and will contribute a similar sum itself.

The Jim Clark Trust (JCT) has also reached its target of £300,000.

It will see a small exhibition space in Duns redeveloped into a modern museum and should be completed by next year.

Sir Jackie Stewart, JCT honorary president, said: “I am thrilled that the dream has come true that sufficient funding is going to permit a great Scottish hero to be honoured by what will be an excellent testimony to his success as one of the world’s greatest racing drivers of all time.

“I am so proud to have been a friend of Jim’s.

“I learned so much from him and I miss him dearly.”

He said the initiative would “recognise one of Scotland’s greatest sporting heroes in the very grounds that he so much loved”.

Euan Jardine, SBC’s executive member for culture and sport, said it was “wonderful” the funding target had been reached.

“This project will create a visitor attraction which will bring in tourists and Formula One fans from across the world to Berwickshire in bigger numbers than ever before and will really be a fitting legacy to Jim Clark,” he said.

Lucy Casot, head of the HLF in Scotland, said the investment would create an attraction worthy of Clark’s “sporting greatness”.

“It’s certain to attract people from far and wide benefitting the Border’s tourist economy,” she said.

Doug Niven, JCT trustee and cousin of Jim Clark, thanked everyone who had supported the fundraising campaign.

“Those people should feel justifiably proud having contributed to today’s announcement,” he said.

“We look forward to a new museum celebrating the life and achievements of Jim and his legacy for Scottish motorsport to promote heritage, education and inspire future generations.”

Lynne Irons, director of managed services at Live Borders, which will run the museum, said it was “delighted” the funding target had been reached.

“The expanded museum will be a modern and vibrant celebration of Jim Clark’s life and career for visitors from all walks of life to celebrate his life and achievements,” she said.

It is hoped the development could be completed by 2018 – the 50th anniversary of Clark’s death at Hockenheim in Germany, aged just 32.

The driver was born in Kilmany in Fife, but raised in the Borders, and was crowned Formula One world champion in 1963 and 1965. He won a total of 25 grand prix races.

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