A tribute to Scottish motor racing hero Jim Clark is getting a £1.6million revamp this summer.
Works to redevelop and expand the Jim Clark Room in Duns will get underway, with Hawick firm James Swinton & Co Ltd winning the contract for the works.
The £1.6m project is being taken forward by Scottish Borders Council in partnership with Live Borders, the Jim Clark Trust and the Jim Clark Memorial Room Trust.
Jim was Formula One world champion in 1963 and 1965, who also competed in the Indianapolis 500, before being killed in a Formula Two racing accident in 1968 at Hockenheim in Germany, aged just 32.
He was born in Fife but raised at Edington Main Farm near Duns.
The existing Jim Clark Room closed at the end of May to prepare for the redevelopment works. Construction will begin next month, and the new museum is scheduled to re-open in late spring 2019.
Councillor Euan Jardine, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for Culture and Sport, said: ‘The new museum will be a fantastic facility which will do justice to Jim Clark and all he achieved in his tragically short life and will attract visitors from across the world.
‘I look forward to visiting it when it opens next year, and I’m delighted that already this project is having a positive impact on the local economy, with a Scottish Borders firm winning the contract to carry out the redevelopment.’
Funding for the project has come from the council, the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, Museums Galleries Scotland and the Jim Clark Trust, the latter including a grant from the Fallago Environment Fund and individual donations from around the world.
The new museum, which will continue to be operated by Live Borders, will provide expanded exhibition space showcasing memorabilia and the trophy collection, two of Jim Clark’s race cars, new image galleries, film footage, interactive displays, technology and an education zone.
Ewan Jackson, chief executive of charity Live Borders, said: ‘The excitement and interest there is around this project is fantastic and the Live Borders’ team is very much enjoying working in partnership to offer a visitor experience that will inspire and attract Jim Clark fans, motorsport enthusiasts and tourists alike.
‘Our newly-appointed learning and engagement officer has been busy behind-the-scenes with education and community high on the agenda, as mirrored across the Live Borders portfolio.’